Johnny Cascone’s Italian

Johnny Cascone’s Italian finally reeled us in Springdale yesterday. We skipped all the known eateries along I-49 and decided to try a new local option. It’s in the old Waffle Hut location. Even though it has been renovated, it is strange to have a place there worthy of attention. Waffle Hut used to get a lot of questionable business, but many dreams of good food died in that building, one plate of eggs and cigarette ash-covered hash browns at a time. Had Johnny Cascone’s not rescued it, the place could have served as a filming location for the Walking Dead without any modification. It takes an intrepid restaurateur to look at the Waffle Hut building and think, “That would be ideal for a place to serve food to other humans.” But they have wonderfully succeeded and I hope they do well in their chosen location.

Dawn tried the chicken parmigiana and I had the chicken carchovi, which is sautéed artichoke hearts in white wine sauce over charbroiled chicken breast and spaghetti. We had the spinach-artichoke dip as an appetizer. The artichokes and strips of pepper in the dip were delicious. I didn’t even care if my plate had chicken on it, as my sights were set on an inhuman portion of artichokes – and they delivered. Our French waiter Genaro made it interesting, as he speaks five languages, including Albanian. I couldn’t help but notice how much the other gentleman reminded me of Ray Romano – maybe I shouldn’t have used my outside voice to mention it.

Here’s a link to the menu: Johnny Cascone’s Menu

It’s not pricey when you compare the entire menu against the competition, especially the seafood portion. For the restaurant’s size, the menu is surprisingly varied.

PS: Order a dipping sauce (or two) from below the appetizer menu to enjoy the complementary rolls served before the meal. Not that most of you would think about it, but Cascone’s is an ideal place to eat vegetarian if you want. For an Italian place, they have a big selection of non-meat menu items.

As always, give it a try yourself, regardless of what you’ve heard or not heard. It’s nice to not drive far to enjoy great food here in Springdale.

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