The spaghetti-Western film genre is noted for its good use of extreme close-ups, its bad use of tomato sauce during gunfights, and its ugly use of Clint Eastwood’s puppetry skills. Get a fistful of Western-less spaghetti with today’s Groupon: For $15, you get $35 worth of Italian fare and drink at Procaccini's Italian Family Restaurant in East Hartford.
Michael "Dobber" Dobson, executive chef and foreman to Procaccini's culinary crew, builds a menu that towers with homestyle Italian entrees, pizzas, and grinders. Peckish diners can practice taste-bud calisthenics with calamari ($8.95), before wrapping their mitts around the 8-inch cooked salami grinder for bites of lettuce, tomatoes, peppers, and provolone ($6.25). The spinach specialty pizza delivers sausage, potatoes, and seasoned cheese to mouths atop a disk of dough ($11.25–$24.25). Instead of inserting a pacifier in your belly button, mute tummy grumbles with the chicken and penne primavera entree with broccoli, roasted red peppers, and pasta beneath a blanket of alfredo sauce ($17.95). Whippersnappers 12 years old and younger can nosh on kid-sized portions of Italian classics such as the Rugrats cheese ravioli ($5.25).
As guests recede into cushy brown booths and enjoy their meals, they can occupy their eyes with Procaccini's exposed-brick walls wearing murals of boats floating down calm waters and soccer players parachuting in blue skies.
Procaccini's Italian Family Restaurant
For 45 years, Procaccini's Italian Family Restaurant (formerly known as Gino's) has dished up Italian favorites and house specialties. Under the guidance of executive chef Dobber, who has been a chef for more than 20 years, the menu ranges from specialty pizzas with Gino's original crust to pastas and grinders. Families pile into the cushioned booths that fill a dining room decorated with stained glass, murals of Venice, and flags of New England professional and collegiate sports teams. The cozy, casual setting is frequently a scene for family dinners, birthday parties, and celebrations after winning a bet on the Little League championship.