Experience the flavors of Italy in Clarks Summit.
Picciocchi’s Pasta, 100 Old Lackawanna Trail, opened in November 2019 and dedicates itself to its ingredients. The restaurant sells fresh pasta, offers sauces made in-house and imports from Italy whatever it does not make itself.
Guests will find authentic flavors — the Eggplant Parmesan has been passed down for generations through owner Stefano Picciocchi’s family — and can get a close-up look at the process. The restaurant has installed large windows where guests can watch the pasta being made.
Chef’s Table chatted with owner Kristy Picciocchi, who owns the restaurant with her husband Stefano.
A: We have recently moved to the area from Genova, Italy. Our dream has been to share our love of food with others here in America. Essentially, we are a “pasta fresca,” which means “a fresh pasta store,” so our main focus of the restaurant is centered around the pasta. We make fresh pasta and sauces and then either sell it by the pound or cook it and serve it to our customers to take home or (for dining) in. Our concept is not only to sell our customers fresh pasta but (also) to let them see that we have an authentic product. By installing large windows in our pasta room, you can watch the pasta being made right in front of your eyes. We believe that seeing is believing.
Q: What type of food do you serve?
A: We specialize in authentic Italian cooking. We make everything homemade in our store daily. We don’t make compromises on our ingredients. Our flour, tomatoes, cheeses, prosciutto hams, salt and olive oils are all imported directly from Italy. We sell all of our homemade pasta, ravioli and sauces by the pound. We also sell other imported items from Italy, such as extra-virgin olive oil DOP (Protected Designation of Origin); red and white balsamic vinegar and glazes; gluten-free pasta; marinated vegetables, such as grilled artichokes, olives, sun-dried tomatoes, etc.; canned San Marzano tomatoes; Arborio rice; taralli (salty snacks with different flavors); panettone (Italian fruit cake); and various fresh cheeses, such as Mozzarella di Bufala, Parmigiana Reggiano DOP, Grana Padano DOP, Gorgonzola, pecorino Romano DOP, stracchino, etc.
Q: What’s your specialty?
A: We specialize in Pesto Genovese; in fact, it’s Stefano’s pride and joy. Growing up in Genova means you have a love for pesto (basil-based sauce), salsa di noci (walnut cream sauce) and pesce (seafood). We don’t have seafood on our everyday menu, but our customers can special-order seafood in advance to be prepared by our chef. We also make handmade potato gnocchi daily and Eggplant Parmesan. Again, everything made from scratch.
Q: How did your menu come to be?
A: We wanted to make eating at our restaurant an experience. You can choose from over 20 homemade pastas and ravioli and combine it with your favorite sauce.
Q: What are your most popular dishes?
A: Our lasagna is one of our most popular dishes and has already become a customer favorite. Depending on the day, you can choose from our Classic Meat Lasagna, Pesto Lasagna, Four-Cheese Lasagna or our Porcini Mushroom Lasagna. We offer a “tris di pasta,” which is a customer favorite. You can choose three different pastas and sauces so you don’t have to settle on just one pasta choice. Our meatballs, tiramisu and gnocchi are also very popular items. Our Eggplant Parmesan is also on the top of the favorites list. You can choose from three different versions: with tomato sauce, meat sauce or pesto sauce.
Q: What type of seating do you have?
A: We have eight tables. We take pride in creating a welcoming environment that encourages our customers to come out, sit down and enjoy good food without being rushed out the door to turn over tables. If you would like to guarantee your table, it’s better to make a reservation in advance, especially on Friday and Saturday nights.
Q: Do you offer catering, event space, etc.?
A: We don’t offer off-premises catering, but we do accept special orders to pick up at our store. Our customers can order trays of pasta, baked dishes (such as Lasagna, Cannelloni, Manicotti, Eggplant Parmesan, focaccia bread (with different toppings), salads, meatballs, etc.). We also offer special-made items for various allergies.
Q: Where do you see the restaurant headed in the future?
A: Right now, we have a small dining room with eight tables, but we hope to expand into a larger restaurant in the future. We are also looking into importing Italian wines to pair with our pasta dishes, but that’s a future project.
Address: 100 Old Lackawanna Trail, Clarks Summit (in the Gerrity’s Shopping Center)
Established: November 2019
Owners: Stefano and Kristy Picciocchi
Normal hours: Mondays through Thursdays, 9 a.m. to 7 p.m.; Fridays and Saturdays, from 9 a.m. to 9 p.m. Editor’s note: Currently serving takeout only.
Laura Rysz is the features copy editor and calendar editor at The Times-Tribune and runs the Talk of the Times column, which focuses on local fundraisers and other events. Additionally, Laura curates events online and copy edits print editions of the Life&Times and Weekend Times sections of the newspaper. She is a graduate of Haddonfield Memorial High School, New Jersey, and earned an English professional writing degree with a minor in mass communications from King’s College, Wilkes-Barre. Contact: firstname.lastname@example.org; 570-348-9100 x5228; @laurarysz