The perfect mix of comfort and indulgent cuisine
photographs by Arrosto
Walking into Arrosto Restaurant in Port Chester, feels like you've just entered grandma’s bustling Italian kitchen only with a trendy and sophisticated twist. Open for seven months now, Fairfield County foodies have long been raving about this A-list urban chic restaurant. As a result, I was not the least bit surprised to find the bar packed on a Saturday night with a lively crowd of impeccably dressed men and women patiently waiting to be seated. Upon first entering, it is evident that great detail and attention was put into intelligently designing the space to ring true to the restaurants motto of “Be Social. Eat Well.” From the high top double tables designed for any date night, to the cozy booths lining the back wall there is no size party that cannot be comfortably seated. As you walk further to the back of the space, there is an additional room complete with a beautiful fireplace to host a private event or party. With accommodations like this, reservations are a must and are recommended two weeks in advance. Typical to my family however, we arrived with no reservation and anticipated having to wait a while at the bar until they were able to seat us. Despite the restaurant buzzing with guests, it was immediately clear that all walk in guests are treated with top priority and care. We ended up waiting only a few minutes, just long enough to grab a drink at at the bar, before being told a table for four had just opened up. What luck!
The interior of Arrosto Restaurant
After graciously being escorted to our table, my family and I were greeted not only by our waiter but also the restaurant’s manager himself. After personally taking our drink orders, the manager moved on to the next newly seated table introducing himself and providing enough small talk to have the entire table laughing. Even with the restaurant at full capacity on a Saturday night, it was refreshing to have the manager himself greeting guests and even going so far as to take orders and help deliver plates. It was clear after only a few minutes, that the staff from the hostess to manager prides themselves on going above and beyond to create the most enjoyable and intimate experience for their guests.
A menu by Chef Richard J. Corbo, Arrosto is definitely a place worth playing roulette. With options of meats, seafood, homemade pasta and pizza it was hard to choose just a couple of things to try. At their recommendation, we began our meal with appetizers and split an order of mussels picante, calamari pizza and side of caramelized Brussels sprouts. For a restaurant known for its homemade pizza and pasta, the seafood selection was simply outstanding. The mussels arrived hot and every single one was meaty and seasoned to perfection with a drizzle of lemon. The Brussels sprouts acted as a delicious vegetable side also arriving steaming and grilled to perfection. As if we hadn’t already eaten enough, the wood-fire oven pizza arrived. Generously topped with full pieces of calamari and juicy tomatoes each bite was even more delicious than the next. After enjoying such rich and satisfying choices, it was hard to imagine what the main course would bring.
Mixed red and white beets with baby mixed greens, goat cheese and pine nuts
Just as we had anticipated, the next dish came out hot and ready to be eaten. While our appetizers left our palates salivating for more, the wait time between the first course and second was a bit tedious. One can assume the packed house had something to do with it and luckily our glasses of wine kept us occupied and happy. When the food was finally presented, conversation quickly died down as everyone greedily dug into his or her plates. In the spirit of trying everything on the menu, we ordered the homemade potato gnocchi topped with cauliflower cream, mushroom ragu and breadcrumbs, the house blend dry aged burger topped with house cut fries, mushroom ragu and panchetta and mixed beats and goat cheese salad which featured mixed red and white beets with baby mixed greens, and pine nuts. The home made element of the pasta makes for an interesting presentation underneath the layer of thick califlower cream. The dish however, proved to be delicious contrasting the soft and chewey pasta pieces with the crunchy breadcrumbs. I was only able to grab a few bites of the burger before it was injested by my brother and was pleasantly surprised by how distinct each of the flavors of toppings were. We were also drawn to a special of the night, which included spinach pasta mixed with mushroom ragu and tossed with squid ink. It is a shame this item is not on the menu daily because it was simply to die for. Each of the dishes were rich and we found ourselves full after only a couple of bites. We opted to have the remainders wrapped up in anticipation of revisiting the deliciousness of the meal the next day.
Wood-fired oven calamari pizza with fra diavolo, capers and seasoned breadcrumbs
Just when we thought our experience had reached maximum capacity we were challenged by our waiter Laurence to order dessert. “This moment is when I separate the champion eaters from the weak ones.” he explained. As Greek-Americans my family instantly perked up at his request and despite our full stomachs somehow managed to make room for dessert. I was especially glad that we did. We decided on two scoops of sherbet mango and passion fruit. These exotic flavors proved fruity and a refreshing cleanse for our palettes. As a devout chocolate aficionado, I couldn’t resist ordering the nutella bubino complete with pieces of crunchy toffee caramel cookie and a homemade marshmellow fluff. Brought in a clear glass, the bubino is presented so that under each layer of chocolate there are pieces of hazelnut brittle to mix in. I found myself fighting the urge to eat it all and happily shared with my family until the final bites was being scraped from the bottom.
Potato gnocchi with cauliflower cream, mushroom ragu and breadcrumbs and bubino, a nutella chocolate mousse topped with marshmellow fluff and generous pieces of crunchy toffee caramel cookie
From the decadent food to the impeccable service, Arrosto Restaurant proved to be an dining experience worth repeating. In the warmer days, this Italian gem also provides outdoor seating to mirror a Mediterranean lifestyle of dining outdoors. Owners Godfrey Polistina and Anthony Longo and chef Richard Corbo are experts in creating the ulimate dining production with seasoned taste and service for parties of all size.
Outdoor patio serves as another great atmosphere for eating
25 South Regent St.
Port Chester, NY 10573
Lunch: Wednesday - Friday 12pm - 3pm
Dinner: Sunday: 5pm - 9pm
Tuesday - Thursday: 5:00pm - 10:00pm
Friday - Saturday: 5:00pm - 11:00pm