Looking for Italian oasis on A1A?
Staff writers Kari Cobham and Sara Kiesler recently wandered into Rossellini’s Restaurant and Lounge in Daytona Beach — a bistro so authentic, even the chef speaks mostly Italian — for an early supper.
Q. What did you think of the place? Though it can seat about 175 people, Rossellini’s is a pretty cozy corner restaurant. It has a full bar and a decidedly upscale ambience not reflected by the reasonably priced menu. Our friendly waitress, Rebecca, was quite responsive. We were seated within moments of entering and our food took less than 20 minutes to arrive. It’s sort of like an Italian oasis along A1A, across the street from the ocean. The only downside is that there’s not much parking out back.
Q. How big was the selection? Rossellini’s selection — food and wine — wasn’t just extensive; it also is refreshingly authentic. Most of their appetizers, like carpaccio di manzo (beef with arugula) fall under $10, at least before 3 p.m. There are also fresh pasta dishes with a choice of seafood, fish and meat starting under $10, too. And the desserts? Tiramisu and torta di ricotta (Ricotta cheesecake) are enough to send taste buds crazy.
Q. What did you order? Supper started with a cocktail di gamberi (Italian-style shrimp cocktail with brandy sauce) for $9 and melanzana alla Rossellini’s (mozzarella cheese between eggplant with prosciutto) for $9.
Next up was the spaghetti con frutti di mare (topped with seafood in wine sauce) for $7 and the antipasti misto a tarola caldo Napolitano (veggies with cheese crisps) for $11.
For dessert: frutti di bosco con zabaione (berries with creamy marsala custard) for $7 and torta di ricotta (ricotta cheesecake) for $6.
All of that plus two drinks and a tip totaled about $70.
Q. What about the drinks? You can get beer, wine and alcohol. Try a bottle of Perone, the Italian beer.
Rossellini’s 136 S. Atlantic Ave., Daytona Beach ACCESSIBILITY: There should be no problems here for those in wheelchairs. Parking is limited in the back with none in front. HOURS: 11:30 a.m. to 11 p.m. daily, with lunch until 3 p.m.
MISCELLANEOUS: Cash, Visa and MasterCard accepted