Local Flavor is a feature produced in cooperation with advertisers in the Syracuse New Times.
I was working in Utica at my other job and happened to mention that I would be dining at Dominick’s that night. Marie, the woman I was working with said, “Oh, I love that restaurant. I get the scallops every time I go. My nephew, fussy-Josh, loves the ravioli and never leaves anything behind, and that is unusual for fussy-Josh.”
So there you have it: Fans of the restaurant travel from Utica to dine at this Syracuse institution.
In keeping with the Utica theme of the day, general manager Cindy Harrington had us try Dominick’s version of Utica greens and tomato pie. The greens were loaded with meat and with more vinegar as opposed to cheese, so that it tasted like a vegetable rather than a casserole. They are intentionally doing their tomato pie with a thinner crust, not the deep dish, and Cindy mentioned that it is a great treat cold for breakfast, so I was glad we had leftovers to bring home.
My husband and I sat in the bar next to the large windows that overlooked an immaculate bakery prep-area. We couldn’t help but notice Neron Rukika working his behind off, and slathering the homemade bread from downstairs with tremendous amounts of garlic butter. (They probably shouldn’t change the name of this offering to “first-date-bread”). Our waves were returned by a most beautiful smile from this 13-year employee.
We wanted to order the steamed clam special that was being delivered to many of the folks sitting at the bar, but we knew we needed to pace ourselves. Dominick’s is known for its large portions and good value. The parmesan dishes that were passing by our table in the hands of our server Sindy George were blanketed in a mountain of mozzarella cheese.
Tuesday when we were there featured a BBQ special: a half-rack of ribs, one-quarter chicken, salt potatoes, cole slaw and a salad for $14.95.
Speaking of salad, I once again enjoyed the simple dinner salad with the homemade ranch dressing; it is cold, crisp and refreshing especially on a day as humid as the one we had.
Desserts are made in-house and also available for purchase or specialty orders. The dessert selection greets and entices you from behind a glass case as you enter this establishment; not fair at all if you don’t want to be tempted. We succumbed to Sindy’s suggestion and split a cannoli for dessert.
As advertised, this is place has been serving homemade, family-style Italian meals for Syracuse (or Utica) families since 1980.
1370 Burnet Ave. Syracuse, NY 13206