Monday July 23, 2007

Graziano's

Graziano's

It’s odd that out of the three Graziano’s, the one on Bird Road is the only one that’s considered a pizzeria, because I took the whole thing to be a pizza joint, albeit a somewhat fancy one. I guess the other ones are “just” Italian restaurants. But the great thing about this place is how they do their wine. There’s a regular wine shop in the front where you peruse a very respectable selection. When you’ve figured things out, you hand your bottle(s) to your waiter or waitress, and they take care of everything else. Not only is it like getting to browse through a restaurant’s wine cellar before eating, but the prices are in line with what they’d be in a shop, not on a menu. Cheers to that.

The other thing is the wonderful staff. I’m not normally a stickler for service, but when drinking wine by the bottle, it’s important to have an unhurried evening, and out waitress struck just the right mix of attentiveness and distance. She brought out a fresh set of wine glasses for each new bottle. And while, this being Bird Road, not everyone was absolutely bilingual, I don’t get the sense that this is ever a real problem. And the pizza was sensational. Delivered variously on ceramic trays and cast-aluminum platters, each had its own personality and charm. The four-cheese + green and black olive was particularly formidable.

Prices on the wine started in the $10-15 range and topped out around $100 (they probably keep the good stuff tucked away a little), while the pie was around $10 for a single-person dose and $20 for a two-person. Parking was a bitch; the other Italian restaurant next door (same owner?) had most of the parking lot blocked off for their valet service.

Graziano’s Pizzeria, 9227 SW 40th St., (305) 225-0008.

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  1. Chris    Mon Jul 23, 09:51 AM #  

    Graziano’s has several restaurants (Argentinian parilla), markets and one pizza shop (the one you visited). The other restaurant in the plaza you were at was the full restaurant of the same name.

    Excellent food (for carnivores!) I just wished they opened more of the pizza shops out East.



  2. Carlos    Mon Jul 23, 03:57 PM #  

    As has been mentioned – the other restaurant is the famous steakhouse of the same owner. You could’ve actually used that valet service for the Pizzeria also.

    And while I think they deserve more applause for the quality of their meat than their comparatively not as hot pizza, it’s good to recognize this institution as a whole.

    Especially considering this might be the only place in all of the modern dining desert of Westchester, Sweetwater and Kendall that serves gourmet sandwiches (READ: with Fresh mozzarella or Mozzarella di Buffalo, whatever you want to call it).

    As for the wine, I highly recommend seeking out a 2003 Santa Ema Carmenere Reserve – It’s undeniably the best 15 dollar bottle of wine I’ve ever had and I’ve only found it there.