MAHOPAC, N.Y. -- It’s a simple question: “What’s the most DVlicious Italian restaurant in the county?”
What's the Best Italian Restaurant In Putnam?
Arturo's Tavern, Mahopac
Cathryn's Tuscan Grill, Cold Spring
Marios Restaurant & Pizza, Mahopac
Prato Trattoria, Carmel
Sounds straightforward, right? But with a dizzying array of options – everything from old-school red sauce joints to modern takes on Grandma’s homemade cooking to trattorias with gourmet pizzas -- the answer can be hard to answer.
We asked for your favorites; four have been narrowed down as part of our contest and those finalists are being profiled this week.
Voting continues until 4 p.m. Monday, Nov. 28. You can vote multiple times, albeit once per day.
Grab a fork, read on, and let your fingers do the clicking.
The winner will receive a framed DVlicious certificate as well as the pride in knowing it offers a taste of Italy close to home.
What Makes It Pasta Perfect: If you’re looking for fast food, say Arturo’s owners, this is not the place for you. Good food takes preparation, and the chef won’t send it out until it’s done to his standards. You can create your own dish, by choosing from a pasta such as cavatelli, fettucini, penne, rigatone and gnocchi and then picking pesto, carbonara, Bolognese, country style (white beans, bacon, broccoli rabe, onions and roasted garlic) as a sauce. Chicken, veal, steaks and chops are also on the menu, which has a least a half dozen gluten-free dishes.
Worth Special Mention: Owner Carmelo Zagari started as a busboy in 1996 at what was then the Log Cabin, a steak and seafood restaurant on Route 6 in Mahopac. Bronx native Arturo “Artie” Isidore, who was once chef at the famous Frankie & Johnnie’s Pine Tavern, later re-opened it as Arturo’s Pine Tavern.
Isidore created a menu of traditional Italian favorites, along with the famous “Arturo’s Salad and Arthur Avenue Bread,” served with his “mother’s” salad dressing – red wine vinegar and olive oil. In 2005, Zagari took over but kept the authentic Italian menu while adding his own mom’s recipes for daily specials and desserts.
“Mama” Angela pops in now and then to make rice balls, stuffed mushrooms and her famous cheesecake. Auturo’s is also known for its oversize martinis. There are 50 different kinds, ranging from the Funky Monkey Tini and the Drunken Smurf to the Yankees (or Mets) Tini and Peach Mango or Nutella Tinis. There is also live music and other special events.
Click here to sign up for Daily Voice's free daily emails and news alerts.