Review: Sempre Vivolo
Sempre Vivolo is one of those places that has been around for forever, and everyone has been there, so we have to review it. Everyone we've talked to says it's great...It isn't.
First, the customers. I don’t want to say they’re old. But they’re fuckin’ old. This place is geezer central.
The interior is not appealing. There’s a lot of dark wood and mirrors. Maybe this was in style in the 50’s when most of the customers were middle aged. The two dining rooms are tiny. Plus you have the wait staff hovering around you in these tiny areas, watching every move you make. Not fun.
Appetizers. The “hot appetizer” had baked claims (OK); shrimp with a sprinkling of bread crumbs (WTF?); eggplant rolled and stuffed with ricotta, I think (eh); and a red pepper stuffed with olives and eggplant (boring). The spinach salad was something you could put together at any supermarket salad bar. Not kidding. (The wife had a full serving of the eggplant.)
Entrees. Mine was breaded veal scaloppini in a cream and cognac sauce. Disappointing. I didn’t taste cognac or cream. I tasted butter and lemon. The wife had a veal chop stuffed with prosciutto and fontina. This was the best part of the meal. The presentation is impressive (on the bone, hanging off the plate); the flavors were strong; and it had a yummy, rich brown sauce. (I’m a sucker for good sauces.)
Desserts. Italian cheesecake (chocolate) was ordinary. The crepe with ice cream, whipped cream, walnuts, and fruit was good, but nothing you couldn’t do at home. And is that even Italian?
The menu is fairly big, so it's hard to believe they make everything fresh or to order. But it's on the cheaper side for the upper crust restaurants on Long Island. The stuffed veal chop at $29.95 was about the most expensive entree. The entrees (including pastas) probably averaged around $20, if not less.
After tax and tip: $140. That includes two appetizers, a salad, two entrees, two desserts, a glass of red wine, and a cappucino.
3 out of 5 stars
It was worth trying once, but I wouldn't go back.
696 Motor Pkwy
Hauppauge, NY 11788