At Byram, Rosina’s offers a modern take on classic Italian dishes
In Byram, Rosina’s opened in a unique space that once housed That Little Italian restaurant, which many longtime residents fondly remember. And, like this old haunt, the idea behind Rosina’s menu is to come together and share.
Coby Blount, co-owner of Rosina’s with Frank Carpenteri Sr and Jared Falco, said he was delighted to be working alongside Chef Falco, whom he worked with at Fortina’s in Armonk.
“We knew we wanted to do something pasta focused,” said Blount. “It’s Jared’s passion and what he does really well.”
“We bring people here every day saying they remember when it was this little Italian restaurant,” Blount said. “We also want to be part of the community for over 20 years. “
The Rosina’s menu offers pasta, pizza and salads. Starters include pea branzino, spinach, cippolini onions and black truffle; and Milanese veal chop with arugula, tomato and pecorino.
Starters include Crispy Brussels, Burrata, Arancini, Meatballs and the runaway hit, Octopus & Potato with chili pepper and lemon aioli.
“Octopus and potatoes are our number one selling dish. People are going crazy about it, ”Falco said. “It was a surprise for us. We sell more octopus than meatballs.
“Our food is a modern take on old Italian dishes,” said Falco, who grew up on Long Island. “I come from an Italian-American family. I have cooked everywhere, but fell in love with pasta ten years ago.
“People are reacting to pasta, including our rigatoni dish with braised pork, escarole, white beans and tomato,” the chef added. “It’s Italian comfort food.”
Falco said there was also a big response to the Arancini with ‘Nduja sausage and creamy pecorino sauce.
The search for restaurateurs for a location in Greenwich has been a long one. For a while, they focused their gaze on Greenwich Avenue, but ultimately focused on the Mill Street location. When Tarry Lodge closed in Port Chester, there was an opportunity to fill a void in the booming neighborhood.
Rosina 140 seats in a series of comfortable rooms and nooks. There is a private dining room upstairs that seats 18 and an inviting 12-seat bar that overlooks Mill Street. A courtyard that can accommodate 30 people benefits from a large retractable awning that provides shade in hot weather and is convenient even in the slightest rain.
“That number of seats on Greenwich Avenue does not exist,” said Blount. “And if it did exist, it would cost a fortune.”
“We knew we could afford to make it cheaper than if we were on Greenwich Avenue,” he added.
And, unlike Greenwich Ave, Rosina’s has ample parking, including street parking and two municipal parking lots.
The restaurant is named after Rosina, Carpenteri’s mother, who came from Calabria, Italy, United States.
“She moved to Port Chester when she was a teenager and has lived her entire life just down the street,” Blount said. “She loved to cook. She loved to garden. She loved to make wine – basically everything we do here. She would have loved this place!
Blount and Falco said the restaurant, which opened on August 10, draws both a local crowd and patrons from Fairfield and Westchester counties.
“We shoot from Rye, Mamaroneck, Harrison, Greenwich, Stamford, Westport and Darien,” Blount said. “We met a lot of young families new to the area, ourselves as well as people who have been in the area all their lives and who came here when it was That Little Italian Restaurant. And they are excited.
Blount and Falco said they hope to be a part of the community for years to come.
“We put a lot of effort into creating real relationships with our customers that go beyond spaghetti and meatballs – but we have spaghetti and meatballs,” said Blount.
“You can come here at 5:00 pm with your kids and have pizza and share some pasta,” Blount said. “But you can also come here on your birthday night and share a bottle of champagne and a Milanese veal chop and have a totally different experience than your kids. The idea of the menu is that there is something for whatever you fancy.
Blount and Falco said the menu evolves and expands. More recently they have added some new varieties of pizzas. They said they were grateful for their contribution, and each customer receives a card to submit their comments. Soon, they said, they will start offering daily specials.
For now, dinner is served six evenings a week. Blount said they plan to introduce weekend brunch in the coming weeks and live music on Sunday afternoons. From there, they hope to expand into weekday lunches with the ultimate goal of being open seven days a week for lunch and dinner.
Rosine’s is located at 230 Mill Street. Reservations are recommended but not required.
Order takeout from Rosina’s website or call (203) 681-2376.