Authentic Italian cuisine in Warrensburg

WARRENSBURG Anthony Sapienza has been involved in a lot of things over the years, but his newest venture is by far his most delicious.

Sapienzas Restaurant and Pizzeria opened on July 4 at the North Country Lodge Motel in Warrensburg. He ran an Italian restaurant in that location called Anthonys Ristorante Italiano, but after getting into films and publishing, he closed the restaurant for about 10 years.

Some musician friends of mine from my online music magazine said I should open a new restaurant, and I said sure, if youll play there, Sapienza sid. We have some big names coming here. When he has a special musician in to play, he offers a meal of Italian specials not on the regular menu.

Sapienzas claims to be the only place in the area with authentic pizza.

Customers say its the best theyve ever had, Sapienza said. Im honored that they say that. Un-authentic pizza uses canned sauce, pre-mixed dough or cheap mozzarella, he said.

We make our own bread and crust from scratch, you can always tell, theres that bubble in the dough and nice stretchy cheese, he said.

Sapienza is also an artist, and his sketches and drawings of people adorn the walls of the restaurant.

Customers are welcome to bring their own wine at no extra cost and Sapienzas will provide the glasses.

That way we keep our prices down, Sapienza said. Of course, it never hurts to send a glass in to the chef, he said with a smile.

Sapienza has made his restaurant a comfortable place to come and have some pizza or other Italian specialty.

We have paper menus and plastic cups so we can keep our prices down, he said.

In addition to running his restaurant, Sapienza had begun importing Italian tomatoes, artichoke hearts, olives, olive oil and other products directly from Italy. He is planning to sell them at the restaurant under his own label, along with his own sauces and breads. He is also working toward a Food Network show. He did a segment on cooking in the early 90s on the noon news on Channel 13 in Albany, and hopes to move to the Food Channel.

Im putting together the premise of show, maybe with a celebrity guest cook, Im not sure yet, he said.

Sapienzas will make sauces and meals to take out with a call in advance. The restaurant is open 11 a.m. - 10 p.m. Tuesday through Sunday. Call at 623-5555.

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