Posted by on Nov 19, 2011 in New York Eats | 0 comments

Something I’ve noticed that most Americans seem to have in common is that we want things to be larger than life. Towering skyscrapers, luxurious living, speeding-around-town-in-a-hot-rod-with-some-super-model-girlfriend-in-the-passenger’s-seat…but who cares about any of that when it comes down to giant portions of food? Personally, being able to get more for a buck is always a win in my book, but I’m sure we all look for quality as well as quantity. Or at least I do, possibly because I’m a picky snob.

(Or am I? That is the question. Mwahaha…ahem…)

After being introduced to giant meatballs on Man vs. Food, we had to check it out for ourselves. Softball sized meatballs simmering in a savory red sauce for hours before being served up on an overflowing bed of pasta – how could we possibly resist!

Upon arriving at Ciao Baby, a chic little family restaurant, we were raring to dig into their infamous dish — Nonna’s Old World Meat Platter ($35.95). It was huge…we definitely weren’t disappointed. Ecstatic more like. Each and every one of their dishes were served in portions so big that it’s impossible to leave without a ‘doggie bag’. Then again, if you’re actually able to finish everything…more power to ya.

With two different links of sausage on the side, it was like a meat lover’s pasta dish on steroids. Three giant meatballs were the star of the dish, and one bite showed that it was everything we expected it to be.

Soft, tender, and packed full of flavor. You would think that such a large ball of meat would be tough or undercooked, but the way the meatballs disappeared said otherwise. However, meatballs aside, the overall dish wasn’t nearly as impressive as it was hyped up to be. The ziti was cooked perfectly al dente, though you can request them to be cooked longer if that’s what you’d prefer. The sausages paled in comparison to the meatballs, to the point where they seemed no better than a store-bought brand. Yes, that is just how good the meatballs were. Overall, I can probably nom on those meatballs all day, but I could easily pass on the rest of the dish.

Nonna’s Old World Meat Platter aside, the rest of our dinner was pretty phenomenal. All of the dishes were served on generous platters and heaping portions, there wasn’t much to complain about when it came to the food itself. The service was great, and they were very flexible with their menu as everything was literally cooked to order (pasta was al dente or not, the type of pasta used, the inclusion or exclusion of certain ingredients according to personal preferences).

If it’s impossible to squeeze in the necessary time to whip up a Thanksgiving dinner, then keep Ciao Baby in mind as a potential restaurant to eat at for the holidays…or just any occasion really! 

Check out their menu here!

Commack
204 E. Jericho Turnpike
Commack, NY 11725
(631) 543-1400 

Massapequa
50-74 Sunrise Highway
Massapequa Park, NY 11762
(516) 799-5200 

 ~ AJ ~

Photographs taken and provided by AnnMarie Hwang

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