Piccola Italia: Fresh from Forest Hills

THE COURIER/Photos by Alexa Altman

In a world of dime-a-dozen Italian eateries, Piccola Italia stands out among the rest. The tiny restaurant is almost easy to miss, would it not be for the twinkling lights lining the storefront.

The interior is quaint and clean with paintings of the picturesque Italian countryside along the walls. A full bar with a wide selection greets you as you enter the Forest Hills restaurant. The tables are set beautifully, with a green and red color scheme reflecting the Italian flag. The crooning of Frank Sinatra can be heard faintly in the background.

The meal began with the Italian standard appetizer of bruschetta. It was light, topped with fresh tomatoes and a slice of buttery toasted bread. Doused with just the right amount of olive oil, the bruschetta was a wonderful amuse-bouche to commence what looked like a spectacular meal. The stuffed clams were a hit. These were topped with seasoned bread crumbs and baked in a light butter sauce. A touch of lemon brought out the flavor even more.

The chicken rollatini was warm and inviting, as it was homemade. Stuffed with gooey cheese and topped with a sweet and tangy mushroom sauce and served with a side of steamed carrots and green beans, this dish is the perfect meal for a cold winter evening.

Perhaps the star of the meal was the penne caprese, a simple yet flavorful blend of penne pasta, fresh mozzarella, tomatoes and basil. The sauce was seasoned to perfection, not too heavy and complemented spectacularly by a glass of pinot noir. Everything tasted fresh and authentic, as if from a Tuscan kitchen.

Piccola Italia is open from noon to 10 p.m. during the week and noon to 11 p.m. on weekends. There is live music on Friday and Saturday nights from 7:30 until 10:30 p.m. The restaurant welcomes reservations for parties of all sizes and even allows private gatherings. Free delivery is offered to those within a three mile radius of the restaurant.

Piccola Italia
102-15 Metropolitan Avenue
Forest Hills, NY 11375
Sun-Thurs noon – 11 p.m.
Fri & Sat noon – midnight
Free Delivery
Live Music Fridays & Saturday
Party Packages
Special Occasions
Full Bar
Reservations Accepted