West Reading Avenues Fall 2017 - 33

DINING SPOTLIGHT

MOM CHAFFE'S CELLARETTE
by Rachael Romig, Director of Sales - Candlewood Suites

I

recently returned home from a week-long trip to
Italy that included the sights of the Tuscany region,
Rome and Florence. I experienced a more modern
Italy, but saw the Old World Italy as well while visiting
Greve in Chianti. My visit to Mom Chaffe's Cellarette was
just that; a walk into a quaint Old World Italian setting,
complete with a classic portrait of Mom Chaffe herself
on my menu.
I arrived at 5 o'clock on a Thursday evening, without a
reservation. I looked for the bright red door of the Cellarette, which stands out in the row of residential homes on
Tulpehocken Avenue, only a block off of Penn Avenue.
Once my eyes adjusted to the soft lighting of the dining
room, I took in the robust, red walls spotted with goldleaf framed canvas paintings, etched glass windows and
folded menus over place settings signifying reservations.
It looked like it was going to be a busier Thursday for
Mom Chaffe's, making me glad that I had arrived early.
Note to Friday and Saturday diners: make a reservation
because the entire Cellarette seats only 75 people!
Judy took care of me during my visit, and she was
absolutely charming. The drink menu offered a very nice
selection of Italian wines by the glass and bottle, but tonight I chose the Chianti to take me back to the villa I had
recently called home. The menu was traditional, and while
I thought I had made up my mind, Judy recommended
that I listen to the specials. That evening, appetizer specials like sun dried tomato and black olive bruschetta and
marinated mushrooms had been added to the menu, and
entrees ranged from a modern marinated grilled ahi tuna
with pineapple salsa to more traditional veal medallions
over mushroom ravioli, with mushroom marinara. I'm
glad I listened to Judy, as I chose the bruschetta instead
of my go-to antipasto. And, while the entrée specials
sounded divine, I opted for the lasagna, which is only
served Thursday through Saturday.
A sigh escaped me with my first bite of the lasagna. It
was perfect. The last meal I had in Florence was lasagna
and, honestly, this tasted better. It was a larger portion,
as to be expected in America, and it tasted like lasagna
made by a chef who has perfected the recipe over 25
years. That's how long Chef Mark Blatt has been cooking
at Mom Chaffe's, which was established in 1936. The
kitchen assistant, Frank, has been with the restaurant for
20 years, according to restaurant owner John Lehman,
who sat down with me during my visit.

"We are the fifth owners of Mom Chaffe's,
if you include Mom Chaffe's daughters," said
John.
I complimented him on my delicious courses
and let him continue telling me about the Cellarette. "I've brought all the paintings that you see here
from my own home," he informed me. "Normally, if
I want something for the restaurant I bring it from my
house and then replace it later."
After my chat with John, Judy offered me dessert and recommended
the Zugatta, a dark chocolate ganache outer layer with ricotta and dried
fruit in the middle. She said it was the "perfect dessert" with just enough
sweetness, and I believed her; I was just too full to try it.
My dinner experience was one that would be hard to find elsewhere
in West Reading. Mom Chaffe's is an off-the-path treasure that I always
recommend to our guests here at the Candlewood Suites for date night,
business dinners and drinks at the bar. Don't forget to make a reservation!
Mom Chaffe's Cellarette
Italian & American Cuisine
146-148 Tulpehocken Avenue
West Reading, PA 19611
610-374-5733
Mon.-Thurs. 5pm-9pm
Fri.-Sat. 5pm-10pm

lovewestreading.org

31


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Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of West Reading Avenues Fall 2017

West Reading Avenues Fall 2017 - 1
West Reading Avenues Fall 2017 - 2
West Reading Avenues Fall 2017 - 3
West Reading Avenues Fall 2017 - 4
West Reading Avenues Fall 2017 - 5
West Reading Avenues Fall 2017 - 6
West Reading Avenues Fall 2017 - 7
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West Reading Avenues Fall 2017 - 33
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West Reading Avenues Fall 2017 - 40
https://www.nxtbook.com/hoffmann/WestReadingAvenues/WestReadingAvenuesSpring2021
https://www.nxtbook.com/hoffmann/WestReadingAvenues/WestReadingAvenuesWinter2020-2021
https://www.nxtbook.com/hoffmann/WestReadingAvenues/WestReadingAvenuesFall2020
https://www.nxtbook.com/hoffmann/WestReadingAvenues/WestReadingAvenuesSummer2020
https://www.nxtbook.com/hoffmann/WestReadingAvenues/WRASpring2020
https://www.nxtbook.com/hoffmann/WestReadingAvenues/WestReadingAvenuesSpring2020
https://www.nxtbook.com/hoffmann/WestReadingAvenues/WestReadingAvenuesDecember2019
https://www.nxtbook.com/hoffmann/WestReadingAvenues/WestReadingAvenuesFall2019
https://www.nxtbook.com/hoffmann/WestReadingAvenues/WestReadingAvenuesSummer2019
https://www.nxtbook.com/hoffmann/WestReadingAvenues/WestReadingAvenuesSpring2019
https://www.nxtbook.com/hoffmann/WestReadingAvenues/WestReadingAvenuesNovember18
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https://www.nxtbook.com/hoffmann/WestReadingAvenues/WestReadingAvenuesJune2018
https://www.nxtbook.com/hoffmann/WestReadingAvenues/WestReadingAvenuesSpring2018
https://www.nxtbook.com/hoffmann/WestReadingAvenues/WestReadingAvenuesWinter2017-2
https://www.nxtbook.com/hoffmann/WestReadingAvenues/WestReadingAvenuesWinter2017
https://www.nxtbook.com/hoffmann/WestReadingAvenues/WestReadingAvenuesFall2017
https://www.nxtbook.com/hoffmann/WestReadingAvenues/Summer2017
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