2014-09-03 / Restaurant of the Week

Sac’s Place…The One and Only!

Sac’s Place is your place and mine for classic, family-recipe, farm-to-table Italian cuisine. Sac’s Place has one of the few coal ovens in Queens cranking out their legendary pies, with all your favorite toppings. For nearly 25 years, brothers Anthony and Domenico Sacramone have maintained their commitment to quality, offering their family’s favorite dishes from the Abbruzzo region of Southern Italy to the community in which they grew up. Flanked by mountains and sea, Abruzzo is noted for its unique and flavorful cuisine based on simple, fresh ingredients including pasta, fish, meat and chicken. Today, a family friend’s farm in Pennsylvania provides much of the produce served here, brought in fresh, cooked to order and served bursting with flavor. Indeed a meal here is one you won’t soon forget.

It all starts with the “Best Pizza”, as voted by a prominent New York area newspaper. The thin, crisp and tender crust bubbles from the intense heat of the coal oven. Sac’s Place pizzas can be ordered in an individual 10-inch size, 14-inch or 18- inch for all to share. They’ll deliver swiftly to your home or office. We shared a small one as an appetizer before dinner while Anthony had the chef prepare a small feast for us.

Uncork a bottle of wine from their impressive selection or enjoy your favorite cocktail from the bar while you read about all the wonderful dishes and nightly specials. Vegetables brought in from the farm inspire many of the dishes here. Take for example the big, juicy peppers stuffed with fresh shrimp, goat cheese and tomato, the perfect expression of summer. Tomato salad is made with nature’s juiciest, ripest tomatoes, red onion and creamy feta cheese. Buttery mozzarella is paired with these tomatoes and fresh basil, then drizzled with extra virgin olive oil for a summery treat. Portobello mushrooms are sautéed in garlic and white wine and taste like steak, while verdant asparagus is wrapped with prosciutto and sprinkled with Reggiano Parmigiano cheese. Fresh mussels steamed in garlic and white wine are delicious, and you’ll want to soak up all those savory juices with homemade focaccia right from the oven.

Next, we were dazzled with handmade ravioli made from broccoli rabe, giving them this gorgeous green color, then filled with sausage, cannellini beans and more broccoli rabe for a unique dish you won’t find anywhere else. Mamma Maddalena’s recipes are used to create the wonderful fresh pasta dishes, including the squid ink spaghetti with crab meat sauce and the “lighter than air” gnocchi. These tender morsels of potato pasta can be topped with a creamy sauce of four cheeses, or the family recipe tomato ragu. Ravioli are rolled out by hand and contain fillings such as fluffy ricotta, wild mushrooms, spinach, lobster, or roasted red pepper and smoked mozzarella. The manicotti are tender crepe-like pasta filled with creamy ricotta and baked with melted mozzarella ($15.95). Linguine with red or white clam sauce is a popular choice at Sac’s Place, as is the spinach fettuccine with shrimp, garlic and olive oil ($18.95). Al dente rigatoni is topped with filetto di pomodoro and fresh mozzarella.

Fresh fish and seafood is always on the menu, such as plump, juicy shrimp prepared “fra diavolo”, style with a freshly made spicy marinara sauce and mussels and clams thrown in for extra flavor. The fresh fish special of the day was pan-seared fillet of flounder topped with capers, green olives and crushed tomato, finished with a splash of white wine and it was just out of this world!

From the land, you’ll choose among fork tender chicken or veal Marsala with sliced mushrooms and a hint of sweet Marsala wine, or a signature dish called veal scaloppini alla Domenico, layered with prosciutto and fontina cheese, then pan seared in a light sauce, served with fresh vegetables. The special sausage of the night was handmade luganica sausage sautéed with peppers from the farm, then served on a bed of polenta ($17.95). Does it get any better than that?

At lunch time, there’s plenty of their legendary coal oven pizza, puffy calzone filled with ricotta, pepperoni, sausage or broccoli. Hero sandwiches are filled with veal cutlet parmigiana, chicken cutlets, veal and peppers, and lots more. Of course you can have a proper sit down lunch and enjoy some of the great dishes available at dinner time.

Milton, our friendly waiter served us warm chocolate lava cake for dessert, along with Mississippi mud pie, both made in house and decadently delicious. As the menu says, “Life’s too short to eat anywhere else.” You’ll taste the love and quality ingredients that go into every delicious dish and pizza at Sac’s Place. Sac’s Place is open seven days a week for lunch and dinner until 11pm weeknights and midnight on weekends with free delivery. On-site and off-site catering is available. Ask for their catering menu and make your next affair a success. Great food, excellent service, and a family atmosphere is what you’ll get at Sac’s Place. Buon appetito!

Sac’s Place

25-41 Broadway  Astoria, NY 11106


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