Catania Opens on Atlantic Ave

“Catania”, a new Sicilian cafe has opened on Atlantic Avenue, in the space formerly occupied by the Reginella Pizzeria. The new establishment is attempting to cover several markets, with a breakfast pastries and espresso service in the morning, a “tavola calda” of prepared foods and sicilian pizza throughout the day (along with, incongruously, a luncheon salad bar), and Sicilian items. Also for sale are the specialty uncooked pasta and espresso beans used in the cafe.

The cafe is comfortably spaced, but with somewhat limited seating, suggesting a lot of their business will be take-out. The food items are all on display at the counter (without labeling), along with chalk-board menus on the wall. When I arrived, the staff was working through opening-day jitters (the staff was still being tutored on how to use the espresso machine – but the Manager knows how to properly size and froth a cappuccino – and the Sicilian pizza, fresh out of the over was slightly overcooked, although the sauce was fresh and tart, and the crust was flavorful.

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  • Johnny

    Is it a new source of revenue for the mob?

    Cheap food, high margin and no credit cards

  • Rosa

    Ma da quando sei ignoranto Johnny! .

  • Knight

    The clientele in the Chip Shop? Wait a minute … that’s me!

  • Jaques

    They are also selling Montreal style bagels to tap into that market as well.

  • eg

    Mr Sahadi and his family are Christians, not Muslim from Lebanom.

  • Jaques

    It sounds Muslim, that’s for sure.

  • Siaci

    I had dinner at Catania tonight, and the food was VERY delicious. I compare to my late mama’s home cooking, and I am picky!

    I had spaghetti pomodoro with meatballs, spinach sauteed with garlic, and a dessert pastry. The food tastes like home-cooking, flavorful and fresh. The pastry (I have no idea what it was called), dripping with a sweet, flavorful syrup, was rich and just the right size. All the portions were sensible, just-right, which is reflected in their modest prices.

    Since they have only been open four days, I can understand that they may not have credit card systems set up, and they may need to get the rhythm of the neighborhood before tweaking the menu. I especially loved the quiet atmosphere. The owners do not feel the need to blast their customers with music or television as many other eateries do. The atmosphere was relaxing and a very nice change.

    The staff is very friendly. The Scilian counter girl I spoke with told me her father is the chef, and makes everything fresh. She gave me a complimentary sample of Sicilian-style almond milk, and it was rich and thick and tasty. The girl told me she had only been in the US a year and was eager to expand on her English; if you both have a moment, banter a little!

    I’ll be back to Catania again, and i will bring friends!

  • Knight

    Jaques: I can tell you honestly that the Sahadis have been generous supporters of every event that Assumption Catholic Church on Cranberry Street has held in the past seven years. That’s not to say that they’re Catholic. It’s just to say that they’re good neighbors whatever their religion. And ultimately, isn’t that what counts?

  • north heights res

    Ah, yes, a new restaurant opens, and a heretofore unheard-from commenter shows up with an absolutely glowing review!

  • nabeguy

    Have no fear nhr, the detractors will be piping up soon enough, I’m sure.

  • rocco

    I’ve tried different things at the new eatery Catania , and like any new place— some are good and some need work. I recommend their coffee ( espresso/cappuccino at a good price) and breakfast pastries– “Graffa” (basically a delicious donut pastry) and a “Iris” which has the same graffa-crust but with a chocolate cream ( think pudding !) inside. For a quick bite , try the rice balls (or “arancini”) and whatever homemade pasta looks good that day. These are nice people that are trying hard to make it work. They are putting in long days ( 8-10) and are doing it with a smile….Yes, it’s not easy to figure out what everything is without everything being labeled but they are happy to help….I prefer any hard working family business compared to another bank, drugstore, Fast food corporation or empty storefront


    I ate here today.The food was very good and inexpensive. I had pasta and meatballs for $10.00 and it was as good as any full service restaurant. Its a comfortable place to eat lunch, read the newspaper and kill an hour.

  • Claude Scales

    I had lunch there yesterday: very spicy sopressata sandwich with eggplant, pimento and garlic on focaccia. When I read the ingredients on the chalkboard, I wasn’t sure it would work together, but decided to give it a try. It worked like a charm. Next time I’ll try some of the “tavola calda” selections: certainly the Sicilian one with anchovies, maybe a rice ball (as I recall, they come with beef, chicken or spinach).

  • Naomi

    I’ve been to Catania 4 times since I happened to walk by a week ago. Everything I’ve had there is very delicious, and very reasonably priced. This is a special place where the food is made with great care and expertise, and I happily welcome it to the neighborhood!

  • NSND

    Delicious and well priced! Everything is made in house, and the owners are native Italians (from Catania of course) and know how to do authentic Italian food made with love… They’re wonderfully passionate about their little restaurant, and incredibly friendly. Catania is indeed a welcome addition to Atlantic Ave, and I hope it is here to stay.