San Remo is a mom and pop restaurant, if ever there was one. Located in Stoney Creek right next door to the historic Battlefield House Museum & Park, San Remo has some history of their own.
Husband and wife team Chef Roberto Silvestri and Vincenza Silvestri are your hosts (and owners) at San Remo Rustico Ristorante. When dining at San Remo, you will truly feel like you are dining in the comfort of their home. In fact, the whole experience is a bit like heading over to someone’s house for dinner, if that person is an A+ chef!
When you first step in the back door of the Rustico ristorante, you will be welcomed by a small take-out counter where they offer their tasty dishes to go.
Inside the second door is the dining area – which is decorated in a fashion reminiscent of Nonna’s kitchen – lace tablecloths, wall art and knick knacks in every area of the room (including fake lemons hanging from the ceiling and a Scarface poster), faux flowers, and wine glasses in the centre of each table. At the back of the room, a private table and television, where Chef Roberto and Vincenza spend their calmer moments.
One of the most interesting parts of the dining experience at San Remo is that not only do you chat with Roberto and Vincenza as if you’re at their house, you will also end up chatting with other customers. Something about this restaurant makes you want to converse and make friends…maybe it’s the family-feel of the place.
If you were expecting to receive a menu before you order, think again. Chef Roberto will personally come to your table and first ask you if you’d like some wine. (They make their wine in house, so if you’re a wine connoisseur, you will want to try it out.) A few minutes later, he’ll list off the menu items for the day. Listen well and have an open mind – it’s all bound to be delicious.
Each day there’s something new on the “menu”, but the options revolve around dishes such as: lasagna, pasta; fettucine or gnocchi, meatballs, breaded chicken or veal. The lasagna seems to be a favourite and larger portions of it are available for take-home if you give them a call ahead of time. The gnocchi isn’t available every day, but also seems to be a popular choice among regulars. Each of their pastas is handmade with love and you get quite a large portion of the noodle dishes, along with a big portion of meat (if that’s your thing). Come hungry!
Before your meal is served, out comes Chef Roberto’s specialty: a meat stuffed olive which is then breaded and fried. A sign on the wall declares that these are called olive ripiene ascolane, and Chef Roberto has been dubbed ‘The Olive King’ specializing in these meat-stuffed olives since 1965. You’ll also get some homemade garlic bread alongside, which you may want to save to sop up any of their amazing tomato sauce.
When you’re done eating, Vincenza will come out and ask you about your meal (if you’re not Italian you may have trouble understanding her, but she’s okay with that). These lovely people are ready to give you a home-cooking Italian experience at San Remo Rustico Ristorante, and it will be one you will want to enjoy time and again.
San Remo Rustico Ristorante
73 King St W, Stoney Creek, ON L8G 1H9
Monday CLOSED: 11am to 2pm, 4pm to 9pm
Tuesday – Sunday