“Huge lines” attest to the pretty “perfecto” Italian fare, including “delicious, fresh” pastas and small plates, of this North End “favorite” with primo pricing; some say the space is “cramped”, but retractable front walls allow for open-air dining in summer months.
One of the best things about Boston is that all my friends are here. Whether it be my friends from home, or my friends from high school, being able to grab coffee or lunch makes keeping in touch a lot easier. My best friend Amanda was back in town so we decided to check out the newest restaurant in the North End. Carmelina’s was featured on an episode of Phantom Gourmet and after drooling over my computer, I waited for the perfect person to share this experience with. The baked meat balls starred in the episode, so we ordered them to have as starters. They were soft, light, incredibly tasty but what really made it shine was the tomato sauce. As you can see, Amanda and I went a little overboard with the tomato sauce with this meal, but I’m glad we did. Carmelina’s does it just the way that my mom does which made me feel nostalgic.
We also ordered the Rollati di Pasta; fresh pasta stuffed with prosciutto, spinach and fontina cheese baked in a rich pink sauce. And since we don’t get to see each other too often, we went all out and ordered the stuffed pork chop too; a 16 oz center cut rib chop stuffed with prosciutto, spinach, smoked mozzarella finished with roasted garlic and tomato sauce. The juicy and tender pork chop held all the textures of the stuffing together beautifully. Delizioso.
So after we licked every plate clean, we were ready for dessert. (Talking can really build up your appetite) To our disappointment, Carmelina’s didn’t serve dessert so we went across the street to Caffe Vittoria where we chatted over hot chocolate for another two hours.
Ristorante Damiano Is Now Carmelina's North End
Dishing reports that Ristorante Damiano is now Carmelina's North End, and that the change marks a transition from small plates to those quaint, regular sized ones. Chef Damien DiPaola includes a lengthy, personal note about the change in concept on Facebook, explaining that the name Carmelina's comes from a restaurant he experimentally opened in Amherst as a college student. "The menu combines my mothers best dishes, my fathers best dishes, and my best dishes, with strong Mediterranean and Sicilian influence," he says. For instance, spaghetti with cuttlefish and squid ink. The switcheroo is officially complete as of today.