Locals rejoice! HarborFrost is here, and Valentine’s Day is around the corner. With so much happening on Main Street Sag Harbor this weekend, festival-goers would be remiss to pass by Cappelletti, a small Italian restaurant on Noyac Road just west of Long Beach. Owners and husband- and-wife duo Luigi and Robin serve up authentic, homemade Italian fare in an unpretentious setting.
I popped into Cappelletti for lunch with a friend, fellow Dan’s writer Stephanie De Troy, on a particularly frigid Friday. We were quickly warmed in a way that only hearty Italian dishes can warm.
True to the restaurant’s genre, there is something for every taste on Cappelletti’s menu. The extensive offerings range from simple comfort food to elegant date night dishes, with an array of ever-changing seasonal specials. Cappelletti also serves gluten-free and cheese-free dishes, and suggestions for custom plates are welcome.
Our meal began with a glass of red wine for each of us, Chianti and Montepulciano. The decision appropriately whet our palate for the array of Italian dishes that were about to grace our table. We ordered from the menu—a veggie melt on (homemade, naturally) focaccia for me and the salmon oregenato, a special, for Steff. But in true Italian fashion, we were soon greeted with an abundance of additional small tastes from the menu.
“If you’re not eating, I assume you’re not happy” Robin, who hails from Sicily, exclaimed. Chef Luigi came to the East End by way of Parma, Italy, and together the duo have created an Italian restaurant befitting their home country’s food and atmosphere.
Comfort best describes the ambiance of the intimate space, as the food is fresh and flavorful, and plate sizes are generous—though half portions are available for many dishes.
We began with some homemade garlic knots, a starter normally reserved for dinner. It may be strange to give a bread basket a mention, but it’s not often that a restaurant can turn something as generic as a piece of bread into a memorable experience.
The first shared plate to arrive was an acorn ravioli appetizer, which was served with a pistachio sauce. The sauce added a nice crunch and complemented the sweet flavor of the ravioli well. It’s a unique plate that still has me raving.
Next on tap were the bay scallops, which were lightly brushed with a lemon white wine reduction. Light but savory, I popped them into my mouth like candy.
Then, it was on to the meals we had ordered. Steff quite enjoyed her salmon, finishing the meal and packing up the perfectly seasoned potatoes to go.
Though the veggies on my sandwich were fresh, they played second fiddle to the homemade focaccia. It was baked to perfection with delicious hints of rosemary. Everything was held together with just the right amount of mozzarella cheese. I didn’t think that my sandwich needed the side of homemade creamy dressing, but I sampled some and was happy to learn that no mayo was used, a plus in my book. The sandwich was sizable—half is enough for lunch, and I happily enjoyed the rest for lunch the next day.
Open seven days, Cappelletti serves lunch (including a plethora of sandwiches on focaccia), dinner and a “quirky breakfast,”—the typical eggs and toast as well as whatever Chef Luigi feels like preparing that morning. The entire menu is available to-go (with unique “to-go specials” in addition to the “dine-in specials”), and there is a prix fixe available Sunday–Thursday. For $20 the prix fixe includes a side house salad, entrée selection and hot coffee or tea with a biscotti in lieu of a heavier dessert—a nice alternative for people who often order a prix fixe but are full by the time dessert rolls around. However, patrons can satisfy their sweet tooth with a dessert selection for $5 extra.
(Side note: I sampled—OK devoured—the homemade tiramisu when it came out. Other options include a chocolate ganache, cannoli, tartufu and a white chocolate and red velvet cake. All befitting of a Valentine’s Day date.)
On February 14, Cappelletti will have a special Valentine’s Day $20 prix fixe, and entrée selections include shrimp scampi, chicken Florentine and a cheese ravioli a la vodka, among others. In addition, bottles of wine will be 10% off.
Cappelletti Restaurant, 3284 Noyac Road, Sag Harbor. 631-725-7800, CappellettiRestaurant.com