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Revello's in Old Forge

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Revello's in Old Forge

Tom Brenholts | Apr 23, 2002 08:42 PM

For those who don't know, Old Forge (between Wilkes-Barre and Scranton) is mostly a bunch of homes surrounding a strip of family Italian restaurants. Off the top of my head: Arcaro & Genell, Revello's, Rinaldi's, Talarico's, Augustini's Club 17, Brutico's... I know I'm forgetting at least as many as I've named.

Revello's is a small bar with dining room at the south end of the strip. It opens every day at 5PM. Although there are ashtrays on every table, there was no smoke that I noticed (although I could tell it is a bar). It was full at 5:30 PM Saturday night.

The menu is VERY limited, to red & white pizza, a couple different subs, and spaghetti, gnocci, ravioli, and a sausage platter and a meatball platter, which are kind of like spaghetti, but without the pasta getting in the way. Kind of simple, but this simplicity breeds perfection. At Revello's they do the things they do best, and the rest they leave for others.

Old Forge pizza is different from New York style, and from other traditional styles as well. Traditionalists shun pizza shells; Old Forge embraces the shell, and somehow the crust comes out with the perfect crispness. Pizza in Old Forge is similar to Sicilian, but thinner crust, and the slices are long and thin rather than square.

Revello's red has a slightly sweet and salty tomato and onion base, without much of anything else; some garlic and basil, maybe. The cheese is closer to American than mozzarella. If I had to guess I'd say it is Cooper American. Somehow the simplicity of the offering is more than the sum of its parts; this is pizza that gets inhaled rather than chewed.

The white pizza is like a cheese sandwich, with no tomato sauce. Slices of course are thicker, having crust on both sides after all. It's usually seasoned with a dusting of poultry seasoning.

We ordered four red and two white to split, and I ordered spaghetti and meatballs, and we split a sausage platter. The spaghetti sauce is very good, but the stars are the meatballs and the sausage, which are also available as toppings for the pizza, btw. The sausage is spicy, anisey and peppery, and soft, and very meaty. The meatballs are, well, "right". It's easier to tell what's wrong with a bad meatball than right with a good one, if you know what I mean. If you get the meats as pizza toppings, be advised that the sauce is different from the pizza sauce; they are ladled out of the pot & onto the pizza. I liked that.

When it was time to leave (we had a movie to go to, _Panic Room_), we decided to get some pizza to take home, so we got a tray of red (4 with meatball, 4 sausage, 4 plain), and 2 white, and we had Revello's pizza for lunch and dinner Sunday, too!

Total bill, with 2 Sam Adams, 1 coke, and 20% tip; $56.50. Not bad, I'd say.

Oh, BTW, no credit cards, but there is a MAC machine about 1/2 block down, I found out.

Tom Brenholts
Mosca

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