On a recent trip to Arthur Ave.we were invited to eat at Enzo’s Restaurant. It has recently gone through a major renovation and expansion and I can tell you the results are jaw dropping. It originally started out as a cafe back in 1993 and then became a restaurant in July of 2005. At that time it had a seating capacity of 48 but with the expansion completed in August 2016 it can now accommodate up to 200 people and features a private party room and spacious bar as well.
Every detail of the renovation was carefully planned out to create an atmosphere that is elegant and spacious yet at the same time very cozy and intimate. It is absolutely beautiful and as if that wasn’t reason enough to go there; the food is incredible!
I had the opportunity to talk at length with Enzo and Maria Di Rende, the owners of this amazing restaurant. Enzo is a graduate of the Culinary Institute of America in Hyde Park and has the distinction of listing among his prior experience the famous Russian Tea Room in New York City. Enzo is the head chef in this restaurant that bears his name and he has assembled a very talented team.He is joined in the kitchen by Chef Felipe and Chef Angelo who is from Milano, Italy and makes homemade gnocchi daily. Chef Angelo is also responsible for creating the amazing desserts that are featured in the restaurant. On the afternoon we were there we sampled two of his homemade desserts; tiramisu and panna cotta. Both the presentation and taste were excellent.
The menu at Enzo’s is extensive and features the finest in Southern Italian cooking. This restaurant can satisfy whatever your craving happens to be.From their newly added Neapolitan style pizza oven and their old world ,home style dishes to their elegant,gourmet entrees, it will appeal to all tastes.
This was Enzo’s vision, he wanted a cozy, trattoria style restaurant in the middle of the iconic Little Italy neighborhood of Arthur Ave. which would provide a sense of nostalgia and bring back memories of home cooked meals. He holds to the principles of using only fresh, quality ingredients which are locally sourced and prepared in the traditional style of cooking in Southern Italy. His motto is to treat customers like family and this creates a very welcoming, homey atmosphere.Working alongside Enzo is his wife Maria of 22 years and their five lovely daughters along with their kitchen and dining staff that’s like a family to them.I think the secret of their phenomenal success is that’s it’s not just business to them, it’s personal. This was evident on the day we were there when Maria came in to help set up for an engagement party that was being held in their party room. You can see the attention to detail provided to make the event very special. It is the ideal setting for a party and they really do go all out to ensure that it will be a memorable occasion.
I would be hard pressed to pick a favorite dish, everything I tried there was excellent.As I mentioned earlier the menu offers a wide variety of dishes including pasta dishes, seafood,veal dishes, pizza and much more. Some of their signature dishes include fried meatballs with hot peppers and onions, stuffed zucchini flowers, grilled octopus salad and pork chops with cherry peppers.
I can’t find one negative thing to say about this place and that’s pretty unusual for me at an Italian restaurant. If you know any Italian woman you’ll know what I’m talking about, we all think that no one can cook as good as us! What a treat it was to eat at an authentic Italian restaurant where the atmosphere transports you to Italy and the food makes you feel like you’re eating there.
If you are looking for a culinary adventure take a trip to Arthur Ave, do some shopping at the amazing shops and then go have a meal at Enzo’s, you will be glad you took my advice. One more tip; no matter how full you are after dinner, order dessert! You definitely won’t want to miss that!