“Worth a trip to Astoria”, this “special-occasion” Italian is a borough “institution” thanks to its “yuge” menu of “divine” “traditional” dishes, plus a specials list “longer than the Sunday Times” (“rattled off” by “patient” waiters); “multigenerational families” fill the “old-school” surrounds, where chef Rocco Sacramone can often be found “greeting each table.”
The restaurant looks like an impersonal, assembly-line place. Yet L’incontro has all the warmth of a corner mom-and-pop — or more accurately, mom-and-son. The owner and chef, Rocco Sacramone, is aided by his mother, Tina Sacramone, who oversees the pasta-making operation. Pastas are excellent, particularly the fresh ones made by Mrs. Sacramone and, like the appetizers, enhanced by their simplicity. Even spaghetti and meatballs shine, thanks to a lively tomato sauce.
– New York Times – Travel Section
The ravioli is one of the most delicious things we’ve tasted lately; full moons of pasta stuffed with ricotta and heaped with fresh basil, shaved pecorino, and crushed tomatoes laced with truffle oil. This outpost beyond the last stop on the N train has become a pilgrimage site for seekers after Abruzzi rustic cuisine. The ravioli is one of the most delicious things we’ve tasted lately; full moons of pasta stuffed with ricotta and heaped with fresh basil, shaved pecorino, and crushed tomatoes laced with truffle oil. This outpost beyond the last stop on the N train has become a pilgrimage site for seekers after Abruzzi rustic cuisine.
– Village Voice
When you reserve a table, bear in mind that this wood-beamed restaurant is a rare Queens spot where diners are known to dress for dinner. Service is appropriately suave, though the waiter’s absurdly long recitation of specials veers into Monty Python territory. Still, whatever he brings out is likely to be good. Salads, pizzas and pastas are nicely put together; zuppa di pesce and lamb shank are richly flavorful. The house-made hazelnut gelato makes a lovely nightcap.
– Time Out New York
You’ll be hard-pressed to find an Italian eatery just off Ditmars that eclipses Trattoria L’incontro, a welcoming, upscale restaurant featuring slightly pricey but wonderful entrees for those who love the classics—and classics with a kick. Warm up with stuffed pasta dishes like Mezza Luna (half-moon ravioli filled with mascarpone, pesto, asparagus, brandy and walnuts) or grilled octopus. Save room for seafood and chops, Italian-ized with herbs, wine sauce, truffle oil, pine nuts or Grand Marnier.
– Metromix NY
A top of the list Queens winner: incomparable food, impeccable service and timing and friendly, relaxed atmosphere.
– Queens Tribune
“A litany of delights sets the stage for an entertaining evening at this beloved institution of Italian-American pleasure. Frescoes of tranquil Italian scenes adorn coral walls in the unfussy dining room, complete with white-clothed tables spread at an ample distance. Service is relaxed, professional, and even theatrical in their performance of reciting special upon special. Flavors are classic and robust, from eggplant rollatini stuffed with ricotta and herbs to the ravioli golosi, filled with both ground filet and veal, then topped with a sauce of mushrooms and sausage. Tender veal scaloppini is gently dredged and pan-fried, then bathed in a silky sauce of wine, butter, garlic, and lemon. Crunching through crisp cannoli is a divine finale.”
Known by locals and outer-boroughers alike as Queens’ best Italian, this destination restaurant is famous for its mega-list of specials piped through your waiter’s earpiece. The move is, unsurprisingly, to order one of the daily specials, but if none of those excite, equally delicious are the regular menu’s fresh pasta dishes, like the Tagliarini L’Incontro: fresh spaghetti with asparagus and peas, wrapped in prosciutto.
There’s “always something new” and “off-the-charts delicious” at this “buzzy” Astoria Italian, where the servers reciting the “mile-long list of specials” are a “floor show” and chef-owner Rocco Sacramone “makes time to greet customers” too; borough boosters stack it against “anything Manhattan has to offer”; P.S. the next-door wine bar is “a must while waiting for your table.”
– Food 27 Décor 19 Service 25 Cost $56….Zagat 2011 (Z – Zagat recommended)