Dining Review: Cherry Grove Pizza

By Emma Boskovski179 Ocean Walk Cherry Grove, NY 11782 631-597-6766 Daily, 11 a.m.-midnightCherry Grove Pizza provides plenty more than just pizza, and with a diverse menu, I found myself overwhelmed by all of the options: Salads, hero subs, sandwiches, pasta, and a variety of other entrees. Later, I left Grove Pizza with a full stomach and fulfilled expectations.After seating ourselves outside at 5:30 p.m., the brief wait for our waitress to come over and introduce us to the menu became an opportunity to take a look around at Cherry Grove Pizza. With delicate red flowers hanging above us and enclosing the outdoor seating, I felt engulfed by the peaceful ambiance of the space. The prime location, not far from the bay, provides a breezy spot for a meal and truly matches the Fire Island atmosphere that we all know and love.Our waitress only contributed to the friendly vibe of the restaurant and went out of her way to ensure that we were comfortable with the menu. I decided to order garlic bread and a Caesar salad to start, like she suggested.The salad was a fresh bed of romaine lettuce, tossed in Parmesan cheese and Caesar dressing. I was impressed by how well distributed the Parmesan and dressing were, and also enjoyed the croutons that were made from a variety of different breads, making each bite taste fresh.Other salad options on the menu include Antipasto, Lettuce and Tomato, and Fresh Mozzarella and Tomato. There were also two soups on the menu – Lentil and Minestrone.The garlic bread was an entire loaf of bread that came cut into pieces. With a crisp crust, the inside was chewy and saturated in a butter and garlic spread. While I was only eating with one guest, it certainly could feed a village.Choosing a pasta wasn’t easy, but I decided to order Lasagna. All of the other pasta dishes allow you to make your choice of spaghetti or ziti, with whole wheat or gluten free pasta available as well. With a variety of choices, there was also Ravioli, Stuffed Shells, Ziti, and Eggplant Parmigiana, to name a few.Considering my lengthy search for the right pasta, I had almost forgotten to order a slice of pizza! Although they had many types to offer, I simply ordered a plain slice. A slice of pizza at Cherry Grove Pizza begins at $4 for a plain slice, and specialty slices can cost up to $6.25.With “Pizza” being in the name of the restaurant, I was not surprised to find many different specialty slices on the menu, including bacon cheeseburger, garlic knot, and tomato and basil. Of course the menu also included Sicilian and spinach slices as well.Also available: Meatball, Chicken Cutlet, Shrimp, Sausage, or Eggplant heroes, all for $10.25.My lasagna came out with a thick layer of cheese on top, which concealed three layers of noodles, and tomato sauce with meat, which did not disappoint. And, of course, the pizza did not disappoint either. I found myself in awe of how well Cherry Grove Pizza was able to cook all of their dishes, not just pizza.For dessert I picked the Reese’s Pie – Reese’s pieces sprinkled on top of a peanut butter cheesecake. With each bite, I wondered, how am I still eating?By this point in our meal, I had noticed that the surrounding tables had been filled with sunburned, hungry people of all ages, ready for dinner.With the restaurant beginning to fill with the dinnertime crowd, the vibe of Cherry Grove Pizza became apparent to me – a place that welcomes all to enjoy not just pizza, but a variety of Italian dishes.