Arthur Avenue in the Bronx is just a vestige of it’s former self. Only one street in this former large Italian neighborhood remains. Walking down the avenue is liking entering a different time and place, an era gone by. Fabulous, wonderful bakeries with amazing pastries and breads. Ravioli shops. Cheese shops. Meat stores. It takes you back to the time before BJ’s and Price Club and big box supermarkets to the way our grandparents shopped. Everything was fresh and homemade!! Everyone knew everyone!!You didn’t shop for the week or the month. You shopped for what you needed that day and maybe the next. Everywhere was the smell of food and what wonderful food it was. Today we had lunch at Dominick’s. So old school. Long tables that are shared with other diners and oilcloth tablecloths. There are no menus here – no wine list. The waiter asks if you would like something to drink and you say red or white. And a glass of something marvelous appears. He asks if you would like an appetizer and again one appears. Antipasto salad and some great bread. When you are done with that he again appears and asks what you would like for the main plate. ” We have everything”, he says. And they do. A little pasta, a little chicken or veal, a little seafood, maybe a nice steak…sauteed spinach or escarole on the side. Nothing fancy-just old style and delicious. The other diners at our table told us how they had been coming to Dominick’s since the 1950’s and nothing had really changed much. After lunch too stuffed for dessert we asked the waiter for the check. The check was just a piece of paper with the total that we owed on it. And that was it – so no menu, no specials, no price list, no wine list…. really???? Wow!! And then we strolled the avenue to get some dessert to bring home. We went to Madonia Brothers Bakery to get biscotti and sesame cookies. I couldn’t wait to break the box open in the car. I just had to have one of the lemony Regina cookies. Then we drove to the other end of the street past men unloading cases of canned tomatoes and cases of wine to Tino’s Deli. This deli is one of those other worldly experiences. I was stuffed from lunch and still found it mouthwatering to look at the vast array of meats and cheeses and homecooked foods. It is truly a gorgeous shop. I plan on going back soon to eat.
Well that was my afternoon. I need to recover from all that food. Maybe take Mickey for a walk and digest!!!