Though not a secret for Dumbo locals, AlMar has been quietly serving great Italian food since the summer (July/Aug 2011). The owners of AlMar acquired the restaurant space, formerly Dumbo General Store, owned by Anna Castellani, and have been working hard to tailor a menu that customers have grown to love (including us). A few of our favorites include braised boneless beef short rib (moist and melts in your mouth), linguine with mussels, clams, shrimp & cherry tomato (or with lobster when they have it), spinach fettuccine alla bolognese (the meat sauce is full of rich flavors), or any of the roasted fish dishes.
All Photos by Jane Kratochvil (janekratochvil.com)
But don’t take our word for it. We asked a few diners there for their favorite dishes. Here’s what they had to say:
- “My favorite dish…it HAS to be Alfredo’s MEATBALLS !! I don’t know what to say except that when I walk into AlMar, I always have to start my meal with an order of the famous meatballs. They are absolutely delicious.”
- “I love the short ribs and polenta. And their crostinis are delicious – one of them has a buffalo ricotta that is out of this world.”
- “I had the duck with cranberry and wine reduction sauce and pureed yams – with a fabulous rosé. Very tasty!”
The name AlMar is derived from a combination of the two owner’s names, Alfredo and Marcello. They come from Noodle Pudding in Brooklyn Heights and were very familiar with the area and had many fans before they moved to Dumbo. We spoke with Marcello:
How did Almar get started?
We had talked about opening up a restaurant for years. Unfortunately, the first opportunity that came up wasn’t successful so when we heard about the space in Dumbo we wanted to make sure we didn’t lose it. From then on we’ve just been working to make AlMar a place where customers feel at home and a place they can come to unwind after a hard day at work or bring their families for brunch on the weekend. After coming up with lots of different names, we finally agreed on just putting our two names together: Alfredo and Marcello. It seems a bit silly, but somehow it just really fits.. a labor of love for the both of us.
How would you describe your cuisine?
It’s definitely straight forward Italian food. We felt Dumbo didn’t really have a place that embodied the idea of fresh ingredients, comfortable environment, and just good solid food.
Now that you’ve taken over the space for several months, how have customers reacted to your food?
For the most part the reactions have been extremely positive. We have people say, “I hope you guys don’t leave” and “Dumbo really needed a place like this.” And of course those comments mean a great deal to us.
What do you like about Dumbo?
The locals by far. This neighborhood is filled with wonderful people who work hard and enjoy spending time with their family and friends.
AlMar also provides a full catering service to businesses and homes in the area and their dining area can be rented for events. Check it out and tell Marcello DumboNYC sent you!
All Photos by Jane Kratochvil (janekratochvil.com).