Rich falvors and delicious food is the core component of one new restaurant in town.
Only open since April 7, the East Meadow based has managed to attract a number of customers already without even advertising yet. This Dominican restaurant and pizzeria fuses together flavorful Spanish eats with traditional pizza offerings. Sabroso means tasty and delicious in Spanish, according to co-owner Santiago Nunez.
The duo Nunez, of Bethpage, and Omar Polanco, of Valley Stream, teamed up to open the eatery, located at 224 East Meadow Avenue, which they purchased from the previous owners – D’Antoni’s Pizzeria – approximately two weeks ago. Nunez has 20 years of experience in catering and Polanco formerly worked in another sector of the hospitality industry – limousine service. The two have known each other personally for about 20 years, Nunez said.
“This was a pizzeria, but we love Spanish food,” Nunez explained. “We did the demographics in the area and in East Meadow there is no Dominican restaurant. You would have to cross the border to go to Uniondale.”
Originally from Queens, Nunez explained that when he moved out onto Long Island he “couldn’t really find good Spanish food.” He would have to travel back to Queens or frequent one of the larger chains.
The business partners had found a location in Valley Stream that featured a catering room, but it “didn’t work out,” Nunez said. They liked the East Meadow location and purchased the business – planning to change the atmosphere inside the space to make it warm and quaint. “I want to give this a warm, small feeling,” Nunez said.
Featured “Platos Criollos,” or typical dishes, include Carne de Res Guisada (beef stew), Costilla al Horno O BBQ (baker or BBQ ribs), and Pernil Asado (roast pork). Sabroso also serves their own flan, as well as a variety of entrees, soups, salads, appetizers and lunch specials -- all of which are layered with falvors. Pizza choices range from grandma and sausage pies to Sicilian and regular slices, among others.
“I want them to come try the food,” Nunez said about potential customers. “The food is fantastic -- the food is really incredible.”
He said that the prices are more reasonable than anywhere else. “I based the prices on everybody around. You are getting quality at a very moderate price. Everybody loves it.”
Nunez explained that he is interested in expanding his business eventually, including into the realm of fine dining, but “has to start small.”
“We are really going to turn things around here,” he continued. “It has been a little bit of a work in progress but the response has been incredible. I was really impressed.”
The customers have responded “unbelievably” thus far, he said.
“I am shocked. I expected a slow progression,” Nunez said, adding that business has been relatively busy. “And if I was just surviving on pizza alone I would not be happy right now. The demand I have gotten for the pizza has been about 10 percent of the demand for the Spanish food. The people who come in for the pizza smell the food and say ‘you know what I’m going to have the Spanish food instead.’”
Sabroso is open Tuesday through Sunday from 10 a.m. to 11 p.m. They can be reached at (516) 307-1750.