Red Sauce

Everybody needs a good red sauce place.

Yes, if I’m going out for something exquisite, I’m off to Andiamo.  Or if I want something esoteric, you’ll find me at Sienna.  But if I just want to drop into a loud, friendly place and get a bowl of noodles and red, I’m going to Gino’s.


That’s Gino’s right there.  It’s in a strip mall off the Interstate but it’s real New York Italian and it’s always crowded.  It’s right across the cracked asphalt of the much too small parking lot from this place:


Where they have real Mexican street food like this:


By the way, Taco Bell, that’s what an actual Gordita looks like.

My point is this: These places, and many more such holes in walls (or holes in strip malls) are right here in the suburbs.  Not the far out suburbs, obviously, that’s a chain restaurant wasteland, but the closer in suburbs are full of real places like this owned by real people serving real food.

You don’t have to go to Applebee’s.  You don’t have to pretend that hockey puck on your plate is an Outback steak.  And you certainly don’t have to settle for Olive Garden.  Drive five minutes further — you’re already in the car, for God’s sake, and the kids are totally into that SpongeBob SquarePants cartoon — and find a place that doesn’t look like it was designed by a commercial art graduate with a minor in cynicism and the food wasn’t engineered by bespectacled men in lab coats.



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