More of My SICILY

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Train Station

ROCCAPALUMBA

 

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SICILIAN COUNTRYSIDE

Near LERCARA FRIDDI

SICILIA

 

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ROCCAPALUMBA

ALIA

SICILY

 

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The DUOMO

SANTA MARIA della NEVE

 

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1702

 

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FISH

The MARKET

CATANIA

SICILIA

 

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MELANZANE e POMODORI

“Make some CAPONATA” !!!

CATANIA

 

 

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GRANDMA BELLINO’S COOKBOOK

GIUSEPPINA SALEMI BELLINO

From LERCARA FRIDDI , SICILY

By Grandson Daniel Bellino “Z”

RECIPES FROM MY SICILIAN NONNA

 

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I Love this Little Church

TAORMINA

SICILY

 

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TEATRO GRECO

MOUNT AETNA

TAORMINA

SICILIA

 

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PANE

ORTIGIA

 

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Making My PANINO

SALAMI e PROVOLA

 

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GROCERIA

ORTIGIA

 

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FONTANA ARUTESA

By One of My Swimming Spots 

ORTIGIA

SIRACUSA

 

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From The Roof of My Hotel

“I Swim Right There”

“GORGEOUS”

DOMUS MARIAE

ORTIGIA

 

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Chiesa Greico

AGRIGENTO

SICILIA

 

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The DUOMO

CATHEDRAL

CATANIA

PIAZZA di ELEFANTE

 

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CUCUZZA e PEPPERONI

MELANZANE

CATANIA

 

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ANTICA FOCACCERIA San FRANCESCO

PALERMO

SICILY

 

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BAR

PIAZZA del DUOMO

CATANIA

 

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PIAZZA Del DUOMO

ORTIGIA

SIRACUSA

 

 

 

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Me in My Room

DOMUS MARIAE

ORTIGIA

SIRACUSA , SICILY

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Siracusa Sicily

 

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View from My Balcony

DOMUS MARIAE HOTEL

ORITIGIA

SIRACUSA , SICILY

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View From My BALCONY Looking Right

DOMUS MARIAE HOTEL

OORTIGIA

Summer 2017

 

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Where I went Swimming in CEFALU

SICILY 

2017

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Swimming in CEFALU

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POSITANO

SUMMER 2015

ITALY

 

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Taormina

SICILY

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On the Way to The AIRPORT

PALERMO

SICILY

 

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Me at The DOMUS MARIAE

ORTIGIA

Not such a good picture, “but” ?

 

Ginos and Johns Italian RED SAUCE Joints

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JOHN’S of East 12th Street
 
NEW YORK , NY
Photo Copyright 2016 Daniel Bellino-Zwicke
 
 
 
 
Gino’s of Lexington Avenue? This restaurant was
one of the most special restaurants that ever was. Ask any of the few hundred
regulars who ate there so many times a year. How many you ask? Well, there are
regulars who ate there 2 to 3 times a week, some once a week, some one or two
times a month, and some maybe four to six times a year, but all regulars.
That’s how it goes with regulars in restaurants, and this is a solid
foundation that all good restaurants need to succeed in New York. Gino’s had a
pretty long history for its regulars to enjoy for any number of years. The
restaurant opened in 1945 by Gino Circiello and two partners, was in operations
for 65 until it closed in 2010 after losing their lease. Needless to say this
was a sad day for all its devoted regulars which included the likes of; Gay
Talese, David Suskind, Frank Sinatra, many luminaries along with numerous
businessmen and women, and people in the fashion business, publishing, law, and
all sorts of businesses. Gino’s customers loved and revered the place, a
wonderful Italian Red Sauce Joint where you could get a great meal of solid
Italian classic dishes, at reasonable prices, with good service and a perfect
ambiance that included one of New York’s last remaining telephone booths and
the famed Zebra wallpaper. And it was the clientele that really made the
perfect ambiance that was Gino’s, which was par excellence.
Gino’s was filled to capacity each day and night
for lunch and dinner, jammed with people doing business, or just simply having
a great time eating Baked Clams Oreganta followed by Linguine w/ Clam Sauce,
Chicken or Veal Parmigiano or perhaps a daily special like Veal Ossobuco or
braised Lamb Shanks, the food was always good at Gino’s, everything was. The
people just loved it there. The vibe was always great, livelyThere was Gino and
later on Michael Miele (a former employee who became the owner), there was of
course the Zebra Wallpaper, the old-school waiters, the tasty food, and the
clientele themselves that filled the air of Gino’s dining room with good
natured chatter and that special feeling that a room full of happy people
makes. And you were always more than happy when you were in Gino’s.
Yes, Gino’s was a restaurant that’s now known as
an Old School Red Sauce Joint. This being a restaurant that had pretty much the
same standard dishes that so many people love, millions in fact. The menu had
items like; Caprese Salad, Baked Clams, both Casino and Oreganata, Seafood
Salad, Spaghetti w/ Tomato Sauce, or Bolognese, Manicotti, Ravioli, and Gino’s
famous Pasta Segreto with their famed Secret Sauce. You had all the
most popular chicken, fish, and veal dishes, dishes like; Chicken Parmigiano,
Veal Saltimbocca, Veal Piccata, Veal Milanese (Sinatra’s favorite), Shrimp
Scampi, Clams Posillipo another Sinatra favorite, Lobster Fra Diavolo and the
sort of solid Italian food that Italian-Americans and the rest of their
American brethren all loved and still love, regardless of what snobbish food
critics may say or think. For Gino’s clientele knew what was real, and Gino’s
was as real as it got. If you asked Frank (Sinatra) he’d set you straight, “Gino’s
is the Real Deal Baby.”
Well, so sadly, Gino’s closed in 2010. It was a
sad day indeed, and for regulars an actual tragedy, we lost our favorite
clubhouse of all. A place that was so special and uniquely wonderful you just
can’t replace. Yes a sad day indeed. Gino’s was irreplaceable, it’s a sin that
it died, never-the-less it did. This was a crime, a crime against New York,
Italian-America and Gino’s many devoted fans. If you knew Gino’s you’d surely
agree.
Yes, even Gino’s a historical Old School Italian
joint came to an end and died, a fate happening all over the country. We’re
losing our wonderful beloved Red Sauce Joints. Places that are a part of
American history, the history of Italian-America and even of Italy, as it was
the citizens of our motherland who came here and created Italian-American
Cuisine and Red Sauce Joints like our beloved Gino’s and other restaurants just
like it all over America. Farewell to Gino’s and places like Rocco’s in
Greenwich Village and all of our famous red sauce joints of years gone by.
Now hold on a minute. Yes we’ve lost many a great
red sauce joints in the past years, and even still. But guess what? With places
like Frankie’s Spuntino and Carbone in Greenwich Village, Red Sauce are now hip
and as beloved as ever. They’re among one of the hot new restaurant and
food-trends of most recent years. Unfortunately, Carbone is very expensive.
Frankie’s on the other hand is not, it’s quite reasonable and in the true
spirit of Old School Italian-American restaurants. Let’s hope this trend
continues and instead of so many flashy restaurant that are not in the spirit
of old school Italian-America, we need to get more restaurants like Frankie’s
and Rubirosa. And if we’re lucky some day, maybe someone will open another
Gino’s complete with all the old dishes like Pasta Segreto and the Scalamandre
Zebra Wallpaper of course, of which Gino’s would not be Gino’s. Gino’s we miss
you so.
 
 
 
 
 
 
Waiter Chats The Customers
 
With The Famed ZEBRA WALLPAPER
 
 
GINO’S of CAPRI
 
 
So now it’s a sad state of affairs when we talk of these wonderful old Red Sauce Joints of our lives. We’ve had many good time there; family dinners, meals with friends, and courting and such. These places provide the perfect ambiance with great food, wine, and the animated waiter or
two. But sadly not many are left. As you know, we lost Gino’s a few years ago
and numerous good old restaurants before that. In Manhattan where I live it
doesn’t even take the fingers of one had to count how many old Italian Red
Sauce Joints are left. There’s Rao’s up in East Harlem, one of the all-time
great new York City old-school Italian Restaurants with just the right ambiance
and wonderful old-school Italian food, but guess what, you can’t get in. The
place is sort of an exclusive club where people have a table reserved once a
week and there’s never any opening, unless you know one of these elite in the
know people, just Fuggetabout-it!
So there’s Rao’s up in East Harlem, Patsy’s in
mid-town, and John’s of East 12th Street down in the East Village.
John’s opened in 1908 and is still in business. Not only is it still in
business, but the place has been wonderfully preserved and retains its original
décor from 1908, the old tile floor, murals of Italian Cities and places like
Venice, Rome, The Bay of Naples, and more. They still have the original bar and
autographed pictures of movie stars and other celebrities from a large part of the
2oth Century.
The menu at John’s has most of the expected Red
Sauce dishes like; Spaghetti with White or Red Clams Sauce, Veal Saltimbocca,
Chicken Scarpara, Veal Piccata, Speedino of Mozzarella alla Romano, Baked Clams
Oreganata, Spaghetti & Meatballs, Lasagna, and Canneloni. The kitchen
churns out real solid food with standouts being there Baked Clams and their
Speedino alla Romano which is without question the best in the city.
John’s has quite a history with Lucky Lucciano
being a regular once upon a time, along with numerous mobsters back in the day,
and John’s has seen the likes of The Ramones, Cindy Lauper, John Lennon and
other luminaries walk through its doors.
There’s one other old Red Sauce Joint around the
corner from John’s, and that’s Lanza’s on 1st Avenue and 11th
Street. Lanza’s is actually a few years older than John’s opening in 1904.
Lanza’s is pretty nice and a good part of it has been preserved, although a few
years ago they made some changes to the décor which sort of ruined it a bit. Lanza’s
has that great classic red sauce joint menu with items like Spaghetti Marinara,
Pasta Fagioli, Manicotti, Braciole, Cannoli, and the like.
Now we come to Patsy’s on West 56th
Street in mid-town Manhattan. Guess what? This was Frank Sinatra’s all-time
favorite restaurant, he ate there hundreds of times over the years and just
loved it. It’s a great restaurant and if you go there, why not get some of
Frank’s favorite dishes? Frank’s favorites were; Clams Posillipo, Spaghetti
Marinara, and Veal Milanese. And yes, Sinatra went to Gino’s now and then, but
it’s a well known fact that Patsy’s was his favorite.
Well, that’s about it on red sauce joints,
they’re a dying breed I’m sorry to say. If you’ve never been to John’s, you
must check it out. This place is like a museum. Truly. The owners have
preserved its décor in an admirable manner, and what you see now is pretty much
what Lucky Luciano would have seen a 100 years ago. You’ll get a wonderful
experience here of days gone by. An experience you’ll not find at too many
places, so grab it while you still can. That was Gino’s.
 
 
 
EXCERPTED From MANGIA ITALIANO
 
Memories of Italian Food
 
2007 by Daniel Bellino Zwicke
 
 
 
MANGIA ITALIANO
 
 
Read About JOHN’S – GINO’S
 
 
RAO’S , PIZZA , PASTA
 
 
ITALY and More …
 
 
In MANGIA ITALIANO
 
MEMORIES of ITALIAN FOOD
 
 
by DANIEL BELLINO ZWICKE
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MINORI PANORAMA with Ravello

 

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Villa Cimbrone

RAVELLO

The AMALFI COAST

ITALY

 

 

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Panino

SALAME e MOZZARELLA

At a BAR in AMALFI

 

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Villa Cimbrone

RAVELLO

ITALY

 

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Lemon Grove

VILLA MARIA

MINORI

ITALY

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MINORI

View From VILLA MINORI

On The AMALFI COAST

ITALY

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My Terrazzo

VILLA MARIA

MINORI

ITALY

 

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Minori

View From VILLA MARIA

The AMALFI COAST

 

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Breakfast

VILLA MARIA

MINORI

 

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A Small Farm

RAVELLO

On The AMALFI COAST

ITALY

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Me at VILLA CIMBRONE

RAVELLO

ITALY

 

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COOKING ITALIAN

GREATEST HITS COOKBOOK

The AMALFI COAST

FEAST of THE 7 FISH

and More  …

 

 

 

 

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