Archive for the tag 'seafood restaurants'


THE BITE: Here on Sheepshead Bites, we’ve covered some of the recovery of Randazzo’s Clam Bar (2017 Emmons Avenue) after Superstorm Sandy wreaked havoc on the long-standing waterfront spot in October 2012. Despite heavy damage, they managed to reopen within months, which was a great source of comfort for a lot of Sheepshead businesses and locals. They are fully up and running, and serving up the seafood and Italian dishes they’ve been known for over the past several decades.

As we’ve mentioned in a previous article, Randazzo’s wasn’t always the only game in town. Joe’s Clam Bar and Rubino’s Crab House each occupied a plot on Emmons Avenue, and Lundy’s was an imposing presence in it’s heyday. But Randazzo’s is the last man standing when it comes to Italian seafood, with many of its competitors replaced by Greek, Turkish and Eastern European takes on the ocean’s catch.

Randazzo’s began in 1916 as a fish market with a small counter for quick and easy food. In the 1960s, a clam bar was added and Helen Randazzo, daughter of the fisherman founder, began making her famous red sauce in medium or hot. A larger cafeteria opened next, and pastas and more robust Italian dishes were put on the menu. Ultimately, the fish market closed and the cafeteria and clam bar consolidated, evolving into the restaurant we know today. Still a family-owned operation, Helen’s grand- and great-grandchildren now run the place.

Feeling the need to order clams and sauce to properly pay my respects to this long history, I got the red Zuppa di Clams for $18.95.

The soup arrived in an enormous round white plate, steam curling off the bright red sauce that shimmered golden with olive oil. About a dozen clams lay open at odd angles in the dish, and with just a little coercing I pulled the meat out of the shells with my fork. They were soft, slightly chewy, and very fresh, going great with spoonfuls of that oregano-spiked sauce. I asked for the hot, which wasn’t extremely spicy, but did have a little kick. A hunk of hard, white Italian bread was served alongside with butter. But with a plateful of sauce like that, who needs butter?

If you’ve come to Randazzo’s, I’d venture to say you either came for the fresh seafood, or for the famous red sauce. If you can’t decide which you’ve come for, then get both – you have plenty of options that combine the two at “The Pride of Sheepshead Bay.”

Randazzo’s Clam Bar, 2017 Emmons Avenue, (718) 615-0010.

– Sonia Rapaport

The Bite is Sheepshead Bites’ weekly column where we explore the foodstuffs of Sheepshead Bay. Each week we check out a different offering from one of the many restaurants, delis, food carts, bakeries, butchers, fish mongers, or grocers in our neighborhood. If it’s edible, we’ll take a bite.


To say we’re late with this news would be an understatement. Vittoria Seafood and Grill opened a week before A Taste of Sheepshead Bay in January, so my mind was elsewhere and I forgot to report it. But, alas, Vittoria is here, it’s open, and so far I’m hearing good things.

Located at 3081 Emmons Avenue, Vittoria replaces Jumpin’ Bean, which closed in October. It’s owned by one of the former partners of the Avenue U staple La Trattoria, which he left to launch the new eatery, as well as a colleague one of the former partners of OPM further down Emmons.

Have you been to Vittoria? What did you think?

Correction: The second partner in the venture was not a partner in OPM, as previously reported.


Just a few short months after the closure of Jumpin’ Bean at 3081 Emmons Avenue, a new lease has been signed that will see Vittoria Seafood & Grill take over the commercial property.

We’re told Vittoria will be opened by the people behind La Trattoria Ristorante Italiano, a long-established staple at 2811 Avenue U. We expect Vittoria will focus on Italian-style seafood and steaks, a departure from the pasta and parmigiana at La Trattoria.

One hopes they’ll have better luck than its two predecessors, Jumpin’ Bean, which closed in October after just six months in operation, and Marmaris, a Turkish seafood restaurant that closed in late-2011 or early-2012.

Best wishes to Vittoria! We can’t wait to give it a taste.

The owners of Chateau De Alik (1223 Avenue U) are getting fishy with a new project: Chateau Lagoon, a new seafood restaurant and market heading to Coney Island Avenue.

But don’t think for a second it’s going to be much like their current French-infused location.

“It’s a different type of restaurant. It’s a different theme,” said Joseph Shafie, one of the partners. “There’s going to be seafood, slash fish market, slash this, slash that. Everything has to do with seafood only.”

In addition to a seafood restaurant and fish market, there’ll be a large sushi bar. The market will also sell fish smoked in-house.

How will they fit it all? Well, they’re taking the huge space at 2570 Coney Island Avenue formerly occupied by R & S Strauss Discount Auto that closed when the national chain went bankrupt in June. The space is 5,000 square feet, and the restaurant owners signed a 10-year lease, according to Arsen Atbashyan, the CEO of Commercial Acquisitions Realty Services, who brokered the deal.

“We started marketing it for retail use and, considering it was an auto part store, we offered it to Pep Boys. But they passed on it because it was too small and no parking,” Atbashyan said. “And then we had this restaurant looking for space on Coney Island Avenue and it just seemed like a perfect match.”

Pep Boys’ loss is our gain – but we’ll have to wait. Chateau Lagoon won’t be open until late spring at the earliest, Shafie said.

Paulie Randazzo vows to reopen the battered restaurant before Thanksgiving.

Rosemary Randazzo watched helplessly as her restaurant, the near-century-old Randazzo’s Clam Bar at 2017 Emmons Avenue, was destroyed by Hurricane Sandy.

Through cameras that streamed to her computer, Randazzo, 54, sat safely in her Mill Basin home and witnessed as the front doors broke and water rushed in and tormented furniture.

“The place looked like it was shaking,” Randazzo said. “It was terrible. I watched it until the electricity went.”

Randazzo’s Clam Bar, a five-generation community staple, was so badly damaged that it remains without power, heat or hot water more than two weeks later, but the owners are poised to have the neighborhood icon make a comeback in time for the holidays.

Keep reading, and see photos from inside Randazzo’s.

This is a paid announcement from Aqualina Cafe, Crab and Seafood Bistro.

Aqualina Cafe, Crab and Seafood Bistro, located at 181 West End Avenue, is Manhattan Beach’s newest cafe. Executive chef Paul Grafman takes the eclectic cuisine of his Russian, Greek, Ukrainian and French roots, and uses classic French techniques to add a sense of comfort food to each bite.

Chef Grafman comes from generations of remarkable cooks, whose eclectic cuisines were taught to him at an early age. This allowed him to embrace his family’s multi-cultural influences in his own cooking. Grafman spent his early years studying his family’s vast library of cook books  from world renowned chefs, and mastered  his family’s closely guarded recipes. Now, using his classical French training, Grafman adds his own flair by imprinting his style on every dish.

After graduating from LaSalle Military Academy and venturing off on many business pursuits, Chef Grafman realized his greatest passion in life was in the culinary arts. He awakened his dream by graduating from The French Culinary Institute in New York City in 2009. There, Chef Grafman was taught classic French cuisine by the “creme de la creme” of chefs. In August 2009, partnered with his family, Chef Grafman opened his first restaurant; the much honored Buccaneer Crab House in Freeport, Long Island.

Today, Chef Grafman is tantalizing palates at Aqualina Cafe, Crab and Seafood Bistro, taking the finest cuisine, reinterpreting it into heavenly, comfort, gourmet food, by building a haven of culinary delights, one delicious meal at a time. Aqualina’s menu includes amazing dishes such as Fisherman’s Stew (pictured), Soft Shell New England Clam Chowder, Baked Whole Bronzini, Braised Short Ribs, Seared Duck Confit, their world famous Crabs ad of course fabulous desserts. Come, have dinner with us!

Aqualina Cafe, Crab and Seafood Bistro, 181 West End Avenue, (718) 676-5939.

The above is a paid announcement by Aqualina Cafe, Crab and Seafood Bistro. Sheepshead Bites has not verified the claims made in this advertisement. If you own a business and would like to announce a special offer to tens of thousands of locals, e-mail us at advertising [at] sheepsheadbites [dot] com.