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Wednesday, January 1, 2014

New Year's Eve at La Novella

We're a small group, looking to go out and have a good time for New Year's but not spend outrageous amounts of money to do so.  And someone suggests La Novella, where they'd had dinner a week or so ago.  I'd never been there.

The offer was a prix fixe dinner -- choice of appetizer, salad, pasta, choice of entree, coffee and dessert, champagne toast. Live entertainment, party favors.  Cash bar.  reasonable rpice.

It's a small, cozy restaurant.  Very old school Italian.

Meal began with a bruschetta -- a flavorful tomato mixture on artisan Italian bread.  The appetizers included baked clams, mussels, tomato and mozzarella or stuffed mushrooms.  I chose the stuffed mushrooms -- four mushrooms stuffed with breadcrumbs and served with a marinara sauce.    I think I would have been happier with the mussels or the tomato and mozzarella, the stuffing was a bit bland and the sauce a bit overpowering.

Next was a chopped salad in vinaigrette   -- didn't care for it because some of the greens were very bitter.

The pasta course was rigatoni in  a vodka sauce -- really liked that.  The entrees included chicken, fish and veal dishes.  I had veal piccata, think slices of veal in a lemon-capers sauce.  Excellent.  Drew loved his veal marsala.

Dessert, served family style, included chocolate cake, tiramisu and cannoli.  Of the three, the one I'd likely order again was the cannoli.

The live entertainment -- a singer who was very much in the "Rat Pack" mode, he sang "That's Amore", "Volare" (in Italian!), lots of songs in the style of Dean Martin, Frank Sinatra, etc.  Perfect  for the crowd, we all had fun.

The staff was friendly and efficient, the owner Mike circulated among the party-goers at the end of the evening to make sure everyone was satisfied.

Thoroughly enjoyable evening, I am sure we will be back to try the restaurant on a regular night.

La Novella Ristorante of East Meadow on Urbanspoon

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