Stefano’s Trattoria: An Authentic Italian Dining Experience
As I’ve stated before on this blog, good Italian cuisine is a weakness of mine. The pasta, the cheese, the bread — it’s all just to good for me to pass up! I recently uncovered another Italian restaurant to add to my list, Stefano’s Trattoria, and trust me when I tell you the food is fabulous!
Stefano’s is located in Winter Springs, tucked away in the corner of the Promenade at Tuskawilla strip mall. While the restaurant looks deceptively tiny from the outside, it’s actually quite large with two separate dining rooms, one of which has a bar. I’ve already been to the restaurant twice since I first went a few weeks ago, and I found on my second visit that the dinner rush is the reason for the large space. When we stopped by on a recent Friday night, every table was filled with customers. I’m clearly not the only one who likes Stefano’s cooking.
The food is absolutely delicious! Both times that I went I had the Melanzane Rolatini Florentine (eggplant stuffed with ricotta cheese and spinach). It was so good! The breaded eggplant was well cooked, the sauce was exceptional — some of the best I’ve had in a long time — and the spinach and cheeses were a blend of perfection. My mother, whose side of the family originated from Italy, even admitted that the last time she’d tasted Italian food that good was when her old Italian aunt would make it for her when she was child.
The authenticity of the food definitely shows. If you’re wondering, the owner Stefano is from Italy, Sicily to be exact, and his knowlege and passion for food is clearly displayed in his cooking. We actually got to chat with him on the afternoon my parents and I had lunch there and he was the sweetest man. He stopped by the dining room to check in on his customers, joking around a bit and chatting with each table before he went back to his work in the kitchen. I found the staff at Stefano’s to be just as friendly as the owner and well trained to. The servers always had smiles on their faces and, something I took notice of, they knew the numerous and complicated specials by heart.
This family run restaurant is definitely a slice of Italy you want to sample.