Ornella's is a new Italian resturant in Astoria and quite honestly a gem. The owners are friends of my brother in law. We have been here twice for family diners and have loved it. The restaurant is small but comfortable; we didn't feel cramped. The walls have painted murals to depict Italian street scenes. The walls are decorated in warm colors with colorful stained glass sconces on the walls. Ornella and her husband Giuseppe welcome every customer warmly; as if they are family. The menu has some Italian favorites and don't forget the specials. The food here is excellent and you can't go wrong with any item you chose. The portions are large, the prices are affordable, the food is incredible and fresh and the service is very attentive. What I really like about Ornella's is that you never feel rushed. You can relax and enjoy each course of the meal properly; savoring every bite.
Once you have been seated and settled in; your drink order is taken. They now have a liquor licence but you can bring your own wine for dinner if you choose. The waiters bring delicious fresh bread and bruchetta to the table. The foccacia bread is delicious and the bruchetta is very tasty. The hardest part is choosing from the menu and the specials....there are so many delicious items. Each course is served without rush; you can enjoy your food and wine as if you are in Italy. I dislike the American way of rushing diners to eat quickly and vacate a tabel....you will not find that here ar Ornella. After a delicious meal, enjoy some of their tasty desserts and a cappucino or espresso.
If you are in NYC; you must come to Ornella; it will be an memorable meal!
The waiters brought over some incredible bruchetta and a bread basket to start. The bruschetta was excellent and the home made bread was incredible. I liked the rustic bread dipped in their extra virgin olive oil. Our wine was opened and water was brought to the table as we perused the menu. After deciding on some appetizers of fried calmari and clams oreganata we ordered our main dishes. I had the Seafod Risotto; Liz and Bessie had the gnocchi in a gorgonzola cream sauce, Rob had the Spaghetti omadoro and Marie and Bob had the penne with chicken. The appetizers we good but notheing to rave home about but my entree was incredible. The shrimp, clams, crabmeat and mussels were very fresh and the risotto was creamy and delicious. Everyone agreed that their entrees were very good especially Liz and Bessie who finished their plates before anyone else.For dessert a large platter was brought over with some italian cheesecake and Tiramisu. The cheeecake and Tiramisu was very good and we enjoyed stuffing more into our already full stomachs.
I would recommend this restuarant for its great atmosphere, god service and delicious food. It feels as if you are eating in Ornella's home and not a restaurant.
Favorite Dish: Penne con Pollo is my favorite dish. The pasta is very fresh and the chicken is delicious. The appetizers here are very good especially the baked clams and fried calamari. Our last visit here Giuseppe brought out a plate of lightly battered and fried Sardines; they were excellent. My wife loves their Gnocchi Gorgonzola. The gnocchi are nice and light while the gorgonzola cream sauce is creamy and thick.