ARMONK, N.Y. -- An Italian restaurant has been winning raves for its food and atmosphere since it opened in Armonk Square last year.
Fortina, located at 17 Maple Ave. in Armonk Square, specializes in serving straight forward Italian food cooked in wood fired ovens. It is owned by Christian Petroni, who also runs Cooked and Company in Scarsdale and lives in Mamaroneck. Rob Krauss and John Nealon co-own Fortina.
Last year, the restaurant received a "very good" from the New York Times. The owners plan on opening Fortinas in Rye Brook and in Stamford.
"Westchester needed a nice casual fun place to eat," Christina Maniotis, the manager, said. "We're not pretentious."
Maniotis said since it's been crazy since they opened in Armonk.
"We've gotten busier and busier," Maniotis said.
Many of the recipes are from Petroni's own family, including his mother's tiramisu. Popular items include the fried meatballs and the burrata- fettunta, picked delicata squash, cress, brown butter and vino cutto served on Italian bread. The burrata is made by Peroni's dad.
It wouldn't be an Italian restaurant without pizza. One of Fortina's specialties is the Luigi Bianco pizza, named for its chef. The pizza has burrata, robiolona, parmesan and black truffle.
"The pizza is cooked in an oven imported from Italy," Maniotis said.
Maniotis said Fortina has really enjoyed getting involved in the Armonk community.
"We're really getting to know everybody," Maniotis said. "We've been making a lot of new friends. We have a casual environment, people feel like they are at home with their family and friends."
Serving the freshest ingredients is of utmost importance to the Fortina staff.
"Our produce is local and very highly quality," Bianco said. "Everything is made in-house and on the premises. We don't serve anything premade."
The chefs at Fortina keep the rest of the staff on their toes by changing the menu and adding new specials.
"You're always going to encounter something different," Maniotis said. "They try to keep it fresh. I like it."
Nealon said he wanted to open up a restaurant that he would want to eat at.
"I like anything that goes in a wood burning oven," Nealon said. " I didn't want to be locked in the traditional dining experience."
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