“Welcome to the family!” Rocco’s of Roc Beach is officially open.
On Tuesday, April 13, the new coal brick oven pizza and Italian restaurant located at 115-10 Rockaway Beach Boulevard, opened for a “soft opening,” that turned out to be anything but. As word spread, as many as 50 people were lining up outside the door to try to get a table for the night. With their thin-crust, crispy coal brick oven pizza offerings, fresh pasta and bread made right on site and a wide array of entrees for all tastes, Rocco’s had people coming back for more, literally, on day one. “We had multiple people come in the afternoon and then come back later in the night to eat again,” the owners said.
While trying to meet the high demand from dine-in and takeout customers, and working around a downed POS (point-of-sale) system, the staff managed to deliver quality food while making customers feel like part of the family. Local social media pages flooded with rave reviews for the food and service by lucky customers who got a taste of Rocco’s on the busy first day.
Staff from The Rockaway Times were among some of the lucky ones who got to experience the hype in the restaurant’s backyard outdoor space on Tuesday afternoon. The staff could not be more welcoming as they dished out fresh bread, oil and garlic zucchini chips for the table, thin-crust margherita and white pies, and entrees including chicken vodka parm with a side of penne ala vodka, baked ziti and Rocco’s signature filet of sole with a glass of cabernet and beers to say cheers to Pizzaiola, Salvatore, and Executive Five Star Chef Bruno, who comes from Italy.
Rocco’s is a family operated restaurant managed by co-owners Rocco, Vincent P. and Rocco’s grandson Louis, so when someone steps into Rocco’s they give them the family treatment, making customers feel welcome and comfortable throughout their culinary experience.
With great cuisine and an extensive drink menu featuring specialty cocktails, a broad wine list and beers ranging from a 10.2% ABV Belgium Pirat, to Rockaway Brewing Company IPAs and domestic favorites, nobody goes hungry or thirsty at Rocco’s.
As the owners work out the early kinks and handle high demand, they ask that customers have patience—and make reservations. Especially as the restaurant faces capacity limits of 50% due to state Covid restrictions. And reservations are flooding in. As crowds built on Tuesday, the owners say the phone was ringing off the hook. “We’re booked with reservations from tonight through Saturday. We’re completely sold out already for Thursday and Friday,” the owners said.
To keep up with demand, for the time being, Rocco’s is unable to offer delivery, but they will have it in the future. For now, takeout and dine-in service with reservations is available. Street parking is available around the vicinity of the restaurant and on weekends, they will offer valet service with access to a nearby lot.
For a full menu, online ordering and more info, check out www.RoccosofRocBeach.com and call 718-799-5050 to make reservations.
By Katie McFadden
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