Monday, September 11, 2017

ARTURO'S: Authentic Mainstay on West Houston Street: Review By Polly Guerin

In a city gone so modern that mom and pop and small specialty stores have disappeared, it is important to celebrate the importance of the locally owned old world businesses that foster character, loyalty, genuine caring and investment in the neighborhood. 
     As the old Italian neighborhoods rapidly changed, gentrified and were denuded of their colorful past, the restaurant ARTURO's, famed for its coal oven pizza since 1957, remains a steadfast slice of history with honest drinks and reasonable prices. It's one of those grand old New York spots that makes us feel at home. That may be he result of a warm welcome in this family-owned establishment that was started by their father Arthur, who borrowed $3,000, a tidy sum in those days, and engaged family members to help out.  Arturo's is now run by siblings with Lisa Giunta at the helm and others steering the restaurant forward as a mainstay in this ever changing neighborhood.
      However, this establishment is more than just a pizza place, it is authentic with old world charm. Hints of the influence from the old Italian neighborhoods of New York City, traditions long forgotten are kept intact at 106 West Houston Street. The walls with memorabilia and lots of photographs attest to the historical significance of the place, which is cozy but vibrantly alive.    
     JAZZ No Cover: Enter its portals into a dimly lit bar area where weathered leatherette booths in the entrance dining room are the preferred site to listen to the lively jazz band that plays nightly and there is no cover charge.   

     Here one can be assured to enjoy honest drinks and genuine food from the full Italian menu. Red sauce standards include parmigiana with veal or eggplant, and traditional pasta dishes such as shrimp marinara, and delectable mussels over biscuits,  Of course, regulars arrive consistently and new customers are lured by the crispy crusted pizzas, too big for one, but perfect for two hungry friends. Toppings on pizzas include Italian sausage, pepperoni, spinach, lobster, calamari and always fresh basil. Sidewalk seating is delightful in good weather but you will be disappointed because you cannot hear the jazz music that is played nightly.   

Arturo's can attest to knowing customers since they were children growing up with the kind of surroundings their mother trusted.  Although, Friday is big pizza day, everyday is a reason to head downtown to Arturo's where everyone is welcomed with open arms like family. Reservations are not necessary but large groups should call 212.677.3820.
    Ta Ta Darlings!!!   I had the mussels over biscuits, delicious!!! Fan mail welcome at pollytalknyc@gmail.com.  Visit Polly's Blogs at www.pollytalk.com with links in the left had column to visionary men, women determined to succeed, fashion and poetry. 
     

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