Aunt Bellas: 4619 Marathon Pkwy., Little Neck, 225-4700
Hours: Sunday through Monday, Noon to 11 p.m.
Handicapped Accessible: No
Credit Cards: All major
The intimate Aunt Bellas restaurant has an uncanny resemblance to my
mothers dining room. Beautiful pink roses color otherwise black wallpaper. Curtains
balloon over quaint, box-like windows. And you can see inside to the kitchen.
But there are two kitchens at Aunt Bellas; one you can see, one you cannot see.
Our friendly, pleasant waitress Sharon was working behind the counter of the one you can
see, creating the illusion of it being her kitchen. We were enamored.
Inside the other, real kitchen, Bellas chef was hard at work preparing us the
homemade meals which are his specialty. We started with two appetizers: a dozen baked
clams ($9) and three jumbo mozzarella sticks, with marinara sauce ($4.75). Both were
excellent. The clams were served in a great crumb-and-oil breading, and the mozzarella
sticks were huge and evenly cooked.
For entrees, I ordered the eggplant parmigiana ($7.75), served with a side of
spaghetti, while my guest tried a hearty baked ziti (also $7.75). My guest raved about her
dish, served as it was in a blanket of mouthwatering mozzarella, and I loved the eggplant,
also cheesy and tender to the tongue. The chunky, tart sauce was also great.
Famished by the cold, wet weather, we still had room for dessert. My guest tried the
Black Parisienne- chocolate ice cream with a raspberry sorbet center, dipped in chocolate
(only $2.50). It was as decadent and feminine as the city its named for (not to
mention in line with Bellas color scheme.) I tried a hearty slice of fudge
cheesecake, creamy and sweet ($2.50).
But what we liked most about the restaurant was its atmosphere. The homey set-up, dim
lighting and kind service afforded us an afternoon of laughter and enjoyment. Owner Richie
Coy said the carpeted, one-room bungalow attracts families from as far as Oceanside. And,
as if to emphasize what a popular place Aunt Bellas is, I ran into my first-grade
teacher! She and her guest also appeared to be having a lovely time.
So if youre looking for a relaxing, home-style Italian lunch or dinner with a
close friend, but dont feel like cooking, Aunt Bellas is a must-try. Their
take-out and delivery service is available from noon until 11 p.m., seven days a week.
Also inquire about home-catering.