In photo: A forkful of broccoli rabe with sausage, the highlight among my plate of Chicken Milanese and garganelli pasta.
It must be hard to open a restaurant right now…
But that’s what family is for.
On April 1, the Lanzi family opened their newest outpost, named after their patriarch, Lorenzo. Located on the South Side of Amsterdam, Lorenzo’s is a long-in-the-making restaurant offering Neapolitan-style pizza, homemade pasta, and the Lanzis’ trademark generosity.
When COVID-19 is all over, let’s meet up on the spacious outdoor patio, enjoy a hot-from-the-oven pizza, and throw back a Peroni with a happy “salute!”
In the meantime, Lorenzo’s is offering a limited takeout menu of big-hearted Italian dishes. When you order family-style (4-6 people), meals net out to about $10 per person, but the quality and delightfulness of the food is worth much more.
I picked up an assortment of dishes to try on Wednesday night with my mom. We agreed that the food at Lorenzo’s stands out among the myriad of other Italian options in the area — which is really saying something!
The Chicken Milanese was light and crispy, topped with a lemony arugula mix that brightened up every bite. All of the pasta is made fresh in-house for a light, soft texture. Although I’ve been Italian my whole life, Lorenzo’s first introduced me to garganelli, which is a mini cannoli-shaped pasta that holds sauce for a hearty bite. Entrees are served with a generous portion of pasta, along with a side salad and bread.
The Shrimp Lorenzo featured plump shrimp and a rich garlic butter sauce. It was missing an acidic or herbal element for me to cut through the richness, but perhaps I was just craving more of that lemony Milanese.
Broccoli rabe, tossed with sausage and red pepper, was the star of the meal. The spicy and bitter greens weren’t soggy at all — a texture I’ve found hard to achieve at home.
My to-go Aperol Spritz cocktail truly made me dream of summertime, though next time I’ll be sure to try their imported Italian craft beers in distinctively shaped glass bottles.
The only sad part of this story is that we’ll all have to wait to get the Neapolitan-style pizza: The family decided that they wouldn’t subject their flash-baked masterpieces to tepid takeout boxes, doomed for sogginess in transit.
What a delicious treat a hot slice and a cold Spritz will be once we’re all able to get back to social togetherness.
After all, you can’t keep family away for long.
WHERE: 1 Port Jackson Square, Amsterdam, 518-212-2256
WHEN, For Takeout: W-F 4-8 PM, Sat-Sun 12-8 PM
More info: www.facebook.com/lorenzossouthside/