After years of success with Il Maestro in Hyannis, family member Michael DePaolo recently struck out on his own, opening a similar restaurant in Plymouth, just off Exit 5 in the former location of Sabor’s Market.
Initially, the Plymouth location offered dinners only, but due to public demand, soon expanded to lunches from 11:30 a.m. to 3 p.m. daily. The daytime menu runs the gamut, from sandwiches to many full dinners that can be found among its evening selections.
On weekends, reservations are recommended due to the throngs the restaurant attracts, but on a recent Tuesday night we were able to score a table immediately.
For appetizers, the dinner menu includes shrimp cocktail ($10), lobster ravioli ($13), stuffed quahogs ($10), eggplant stuffed with ricotta cheese, spinach and prosciutto ($11), and artichoke hearts marinated in white wine and lemon juice and crowned with pecorino and mozzarella cheese ($9).
My dinner companion and I ordered a garden salad ($4), which we planned to share, but our waitress wisely advised we each get our own. The salads were small, but tasty. We also ordered the bruschetta ($9), which featured toasted Italian bread sprinkled with basil and amply endowed with fresh tomatoes, chopped onion, and a zesty dressing. I knew enough to save room for dinner, while my partner gobbled down several slices of the flavorful opener.
Il Maestro offers a wide selection of beef, pork, chicken, and veal, so it was a pleasant puzzle figuring out our entrees. Meals start at about $14 for pasta selections up to slightly over $20 for some of the fish and veal dishes.
I chose chicken Marsala ($18), which consisted of two large slices of boneless chicken breast, perfectly sautéed and enhanced by a tasty Marsala wine and topped with plenty of mushrooms. The side of angel hair pasta, crowned with meat sauce, was the perfect blend of garlic and herbs. I was only able to consume one of the two slices, leaving an ample portion to enjoy later.
My dining partner ordered one of the specials for the evening: a grilled salmon steak ($23) perched on a bed of vegetable risotto. In her words, the risotto mix was tasty enough to vie with the perfectly cooked salmon. Fresh peas, green beans, tomatoes, and other vegetables made this a memorable side. She took home a sizable doggy bag to feast on the following day.
Then it was on to dessert. I selected the chocolate cake ($9), which came as a generous slice of fudgy heaven lightly drizzled with both white and dark chocolate. I didn’t make it past the halfway mark, but thoroughly enjoyed getting there.
My partner chose the cannoli ($7), which came as a pair of small wafer tubes, stuffed with tasty sweet cheese and garnished with powdered sugar and whipped cream. She finished it off.
While the restaurant is quite large and features a nice bar area, the seating is divided so it doesn’t get too noisy.
Families are welcome; there was quite a group the night we dined there. Il Maestro offers a children’s menu with a number of selections for $9, including pasta with meatballs or sausage, ravioli, lasagna, and chicken Parmigiana.