Touch of Italy continues to expand its locations, refine its offerings and impress its guests
In eight short years, the owners of Touch of Italy restaurants have transformed the landscape of Italian cuisine on the Eastern Shore. What began in 2009 as small delicatessen in Rehoboth has evolved into a popular foodie brand among locals and visitors alike. With multiple locations from Lewes to Ocean City, Touch of Italy offers its guests a complete and authentic Italian experience that’s unique and enjoyable.
“Our secret is actually quite simple: We strive each and every day to provide our guests with fresh, authentic and homemade Italian food,” said Touch of Italy Operations Manager Peter Todd Scioli. “Touch of Italy was and continues to be at the forefront of a revolution in simple and dependable ethnic cuisine on the Eastern Shore.”
Touch of Italy boasts trattorias in Rehoboth, Lewes and Ocean City — with a new location opening soon in Milford. Each offers not only table dining but also full-service Italian delicatessens with authentic meats, cheeses, breads and pastries (the breads and pastries are made fresh daily in their Lewes bakery), as well. TOI’s genuine Neapolitan-style pizza is a favorite, and all locations now showcase Italian specialty markets, with dry goods, pastas and grab & go dinners.
Piccolino, the Bethany location, is open all summer long with a wide selection of delicatessen favorites, breads and pastries, as well as specialty juices and coffees.
“Italians are known for showing their love through food, drink and hospitality,” said renowned local food critic and popular media personality The Rehoboth Foodie. “The three Touch of Italy sit-down restaurants show that love with chunky antipasti, heaping platters of pasta, hearty main courses, crusty wood-fired pizzas and overstuffed subs on freshly baked Italian bread. One of my favorites is the Braciole con Cavatelli prepared involtini style. Sautéed flank steak envelops seasoned ricotta and a dash of — oops, they won’t tell me!
“Whatever the family secret is,” he continued, “it’s topped with shavings of sharp provolone. Red-sauce Italian standbys like meatballs, gnocchi and handmade ravioli from the Bronx are also available, including Touch of Italy’s legendary pan-seared Chicken a la Parmigiana, impossibly thin and crowned with creamy muenster.
“Authentic Italian meats, cheeses, breads, prepared dishes, fresh cookies and pastries are available for takeout from TOI’s huge deli cases. Italians, Italian wannabes and those who love ’em call it ‘one-stop shopping.’ I just say, ‘Mangia bene!’”
The retail division of Touch of Italy has grown steadily over the years, by securing products that are difficult to source locally. For 2016, they focused on expanding it even more into a true Italian marketplace.
At all Touch of Italy restaurants, you can now purchase the new private-label Touch of Italy marinara sauce, tomato-basil sauce, olive oil, sundried peppers and freshly crushed red-pepper jars. Of course, the freshly made mozzarella will always be available. Additionally, you will be able to buy Borgatti ravioli and manicotti, as well as Biancardi’s sausage — all from Arthur Avenue in The Bronx.
As the only Italian market at the beach, everyone can be Italian with the help of Touch of Italy, where you can buy ingredients to make culinary Italian masterpieces at home.
“We gave our retail and grocery section a major facelift and hired two renowned retail experts to enhance this element of the guest experience,” said Scioli, who noted that the privately labeled marinara sauce, sundried peppers and Borgatti ravioli are three big sellers. “Everything we do as a company has the singular goal of providing a superb guest experience. I often equate the Touch of Italy experience with that of an Italian wedding: It’s happy; it’s festive; it’s fulfilling and a complete experience for the senses.”
TOUCH OF ITALY
Locations in Lewes, Rehoboth, Bethany, Ocean City and Milford (coming soon)
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