When restaurant owner Anth-ony Delfino saw smoke pour into his restaurant on a busy summer night, thoughts of the demise of his nine-year establishment on Halstead Avenue flooded his mind.
“Everything I worked for was gone,” Delfino said.
After Delfino’s customers and employees evacuated the restaur-ant safely, the Harrison Fire Department commanded the scene and stopped what would later be determined as an electrical fire from with origins in a neighboring business. The fire caused soot and smoke to pour into the restaurant’s dining room at a rapid rate and led to an evacuation of every business on the block.
“I never experienced before in my life, a fire,” Delfino said. “But, within 15 minutes, the entire dining room was layered in smoke.”
After seeing his business literally go up in smoke, Delfino soon decided to come back stronger than before with more contemporary style.
What was once Al Dente’s restaurant reopened on Oct. 5 as Delfino’s.
“It’s a new beginning,” Delfino said. “To be honest with you, some good ended up coming from some bad.”
Almost immediately upon entering the renovated establishment, you can see a different décor than in years prior. Gone are the tables covered in white cloths in favor of darker wood and refreshed color combinations along with a private dining room for parties and a rejuvenated bar area with a stage in the corner to provide live entertainment.
With a new décor has come a new style of cooking, as well. Included in their robust Italian entrée selection is more casual, contemporary Italian food, from fresh pastas and pizzas to Italian tapas-style eating.
“I enjoy this very much. I enjoy meeting people and cooking. So my outlook is let’s do it again,” Delfino said.
The restaurant is located at 60 Halstead Ave.
–Reporting by Phil Nobile