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Anyone Remember Lofurno's?

Maybe this place has been gone too long for many people to remember, but Lofurno's was one of my favorites of all time, and I still miss it.

It was in an old clap-board building on 15th in the Interbay neighborhood, had *excellent* waiters--all aproned men 50+, an old-style piano bar, and private rooms upstairs. Dark, warm, and the perfect atmosphere balance between "Whoa, this place is different" and "I could happily die here." I still dream of their spaghetti carbonara and their gorgonzola salad dressing.

Anyone else remember and miss Lofurno's?

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  1. Sure...I remember this place from the mid 80's!! It was a wonderful "funky" kind of place with great food. I left Seattle in 86 to return about 6 years ago. Alas, Lofurno's was long gone. I do miss it....there certainly isn't anything like it around.

    :0(

    1. It's nice to know that people still remember us! My father owned the restaurant, and I worked there in the kitchen when I was young. Very fond memories indeed!!

      12 Replies
      1. re: llofurno

        Hi, llofurno:

        Cool. Thanks for responding.

        Do you have...er... any of the place's recipes? I will do nearly *anything* for the afore-mentioned carbonara and gorgonzola dressing recipes.

        Aloha, Kaleo

        1. re: kaleokahu

          Kaleo, Did my daughter send you any recipes ? i have a folder somewhere with most of them- Lisa should remember them though, as she was our last "Grandi Formaggio" in the kitchen. It's GREAT to be remembered - we had alot of fun being different. regards, phil lofurno

          1. re: UnionStreetIrregular

            Aloha, Phil:

            Thank you for your reply. No, I haven't received anything from your daughter, but I would be THRILLED to get any recipes. My email is kaleokahu@gmail.com

            I have had the phone book out at least 5 times, ready to dial you up, but I didn't want to bother you.

            Mahalo Nui Loa,
            Kaleo

            1. re: kaleokahu

              Hello Kaleo,

              Will you share?

              Thanks,
              Beth

                1. re: Bethwick

                  Dear Kaleo:

                  I was also an avid fan of Lofurno's and was devistated when a chrome plating business closed them down. I was a regular Friday nite guest and loved there standard salad and veal repolinie (sp) (raisins). Phil invited my wife and I to the final nite of dining and music upstairs. I'll never forget the mirrored ball. Could you forward any recipes that you might have to me. My email address in San Francisco is Peter.Dempsey@ExpressPros.com
                  Thank you in advance for any help you can provide.
                  Peter Dempsey

                  1. re: may11988

                    Hi, Peter:

                    I've forwarded your post to Phil.

                    I've been after Phil to do a cookbook, but he's a hard sell...

                    Aloha,
                    Kaleo

                    1. re: kaleokahu

                      Kaleo:

                      Thank you. I'll keep my fingers crossed.

                      Peter

              1. re: UnionStreetIrregular

                wow Phil, dunno if you remember me (i worked for you) but my father Joe Mccann sure loved ya. wow long time.

                1. re: ErikMc

                  Erik,

                  I can your dad in booth 5 looking down at the bar not wanting to miss ANYTHING.

                  phil

            2. re: llofurno

              Hi Lisa and Phil, Lofurnos is a memory of my first real job with Tony. I wish I could go back for one dinner and bring my wife and kids. Such a great memory. I am a simple guy and loved the spaghetti and meatballs. Joe manning

              1. re: Manningjr

                Joe, How nice to hear from you and to also remember those learning (me too) days. Remember, if it weren't for Spag-Balls, nobody would know anything about "Italian food".
                Regards to your parents (Dad especially) . Did you know that Joe Sr. worked in a restaurant also, in the the early 60s. bests, phil

            3. We had many very memorable meals at Lofurno's at Interbay. The waiters were outstanding. The music wonderful. And the Caesar salad to die for, mixed at your table, I have never had better. Do you think some day you might publish some of the recipes?

              3 Replies
              1. re: Gevino

                The food was SO good there, I'm amazed (and dismayed) no one in the family has written a book. Consider my feeble pen and weak eyes volunteered if they will share.

                1. re: kaleokahu

                  kaleokahu,

                  Did any of those old Lofurno's recipes ever come your way? Would love to get my hands on a few... I was a foodie coming out of the womb, and my dad used to take me there when I was in my teen's as a father/daughter date night. Loved that carbonara and the gorgonzola dressing, as well as their Ceasar!

                  Would love some of the secrets. I am with you, someone in the family should do a book - or I will help you with it!

                  1. re: gingershelley

                    Hi, gingershelley:

                    Yes, I have the Gorgonzola dressing recipe and some of the clues on the carbonara. If you and Erik shoot me your emails, I will give you the recipe (if Phil doesn't mind). kaleokahu@gmail.com

                    Aloha,
                    Kaleo

              2. We still talk about the smell as you walked in and those incredible tableside caesars!!! Loved going there to drown our sorrows after a Seahawk game. We've been hunting for tableside caesars OTHER THAN El Gaucho's in the Seattle area and can't find any. El Gaucho's makes you buy a minimum of 2 at $12.00 each. Pretty expensive for one salad. Bring back Lofurno's!!!

                6 Replies
                1. re: deletepoof

                  Lofurno's: the only restaurant, to this day, at which I ate pan fried liver and I liked it! The waiters were so old it seemed like: I was in my 20's they were in their "timeless" phase and very formal. Great music! ...enough worn red velvet to seem like a timeless bordello. Yeah - who was it that remembered the carbonara? the other restaurant of that time, when you really felt you were part of the family, was Adriatica. What was it about those places that makes them stay with our memories for tens of years afterward? I think it was the "old world" formality in a neighbourhood place. These were not food as entertainment places, they were the tried and true joints. I'll bet I ate at Lofurno's more than 30 times...and most people don't do that anymore do they? Many thanks to whomever started this thread. Really put on a smile on my face thinking about good times gone by.

                  1. re: exiledtotheeastside

                    Moved to Seattle in 1984, probably ate at Lofurno's only 2-4 times but I do remember the great service. And Adriatica was our local special occasion place. But for the big night out it was Lubuznik? on 1st Ave. I remember the juiciest veal chops, excellent service and an elegant, very quiet ambiance. That's the kind of restaurant I would run if I was in the business. I miss it!

                    1. re: Bethwick

                      My favorite restaurant (after the ORIGINAL Gaucho closed) was "Labuznik" . It was well run and also a little before its' time ; the 80s were tough restaurant days and many of us were worn out when the 90s boom hit. regards, phil lofurno

                      1. re: UnionStreetIrregular

                        Phil, thanks for your reply. Do you know what happened to the owner/chef at Lubuznik ? And didn't his beautiful wife also help wait tables?

                        1. re: Bethwick

                          My parents were regulars, at least as much as you could be coming up from the South End. We mentioned Lubuznik the last time that we were at Poppy and it turned out that our waiter was their kid. He said his parents are doing well, and did mention something else but I don't remember. Always wanted to go, but never go the chance (too young/picky).

                    2. re: exiledtotheeastside

                      Yesterday I drove by the house Adriatica was in, and was sad to see that it had been demolished in order to build a big building. Sad! My wife and I had our wedding rehearsal dinner there on the last weekend they were open.

                  2. Never got to Lofurno's but loved Italo's, on Rainier.

                    1. What a memorable place. My uncle was a Lofurno regular and took me there several times. It was old school and I loved it. I was sad when I learned it closed.

                      1. Amazing memories on this thread. So nice to see.

                        1. yea, i'd kill for that gorgonzola salad dressing. love that stuff. and i worked in the kitchen and never wrote it down. lol. never imagined it would close

                          1. Sunday night jazz was the absolute best I've ever heard in Seattle. Just a real, warm, fertile place for creating. Still miss it these years later. Smoke and all. :)

                            1. Ok Papa,
                              Write The book already!
                              Everyone wants the recipes and they can all contribute to the memories section.

                              Love you,
                              Karen Lofurno

                              3 Replies
                              1. re: lofurnoceasar

                                And we're even willing to help with the logistics!

                                1. re: alarash

                                  Hey, this is Karen Lofurno.I married Tony.
                                  Did you go to Lofurno's often? My son Austin is starting culinary school in Oct. Passing on the tradition!
                                  He is a fantastic cook!

                                  1. re: lofurnoceasar

                                    Hi Karen,

                                    I've never been to Lofurno's, as I was just a kid in the Seattle area, not old enough to drive. This thread has me hooked on what it must have been like, and I'm interested that so many people from back then are still enthusiastic about the place. Good luck to Austin with his new school in October! I hope he opens up his own Lofurno's for my generation some day.

                                    alarash