More than a century ago in Italy’s sunny southern regions, it was discovered that lemon peel—like many diners—released its true essence when introduced to a bit of alcohol. After soaking for a few days in vodka and sugar, the peel creates limoncello—a smooth, sweet, and bright liqueur ideal for helping diners meld with their tablemates. Today’s Reserve selection invites you to start an Italian meal the right way with one of four dining options:
$60 for a three-course meal for two, valid Sunday–Thursday
- Two welcome limoncellos
- One insalate or antipasto dish
- Two entrees
- One dessert<p>
$60 for the same three-course meal for two, valid any day of the week<p>
$110 for a three-course meal for four, valid Sunday–Thursday
- Four welcome limoncellos
- Two insalate or antipasti dishes
- Four entrees
- Two desserts<p>
$110 for the same three-course meal for four, valid any day of the week<p>
For more than 35 years, singer Ricardo Montaner traveled the world performing songs such as “Déjame Llorar”—Let Me Mourn—and “Será”—It Will Be. But his global explorations didn’t cease when he decided to leave the stage; instead, he began sampling each country’s homegrown wines. When Mr. Montaner finds an exceptionally good bottle, he adds it to the Bodega del Patron wine list at Cafe Ragazzi, his family restaurant in Surfside.
To complement the thoughtfully curated cellar, the chef at Cafe Ragazzi breathes life into traditional Italian recipes such as pollo limone—chicken sautéed with white wine, lemon, and capers—and zuppe di pesce, a melisma of clams, mussels, calamari, shrimp, and fish in wine sauce. The open kitchen enables diners to admire the cooks as they stir sauces, toss pizzas into a rustic brick oven, and plate weekend exclusives such as osso buco, featuring braised veal shank and saffron risotto.
The family proudly notes that their chef has helmed the oven for 18 years and that many of their waiters have welcomed guests for eight years, often with a customary kiss on the cheeks of familiar faces. They lead visitors through the dining area to tables draped in crisp white linens, which make it easy for groups to determine which friend has the dirtiest elbows.