In 1974, when Salvatore D’Elia opened Del Fiore Pork Store in Rocky Point, it was the easternmost pork store on Long Island’s North Shore. “If you wanted a sopressata,” said D’Elia’s daughter, co-owner Camille Pabon, “we were the last stop before Orient.”
Del Fiore’s still makes its own sausages, fresh and dried, sweet and hot. There are chicken and lamb varieties for those who refrain from (or tire of) pork, and casing-less patties for sausage lovers who want to eat them like burgers.
But the days are long past when an Italian shop could live on sausage alone. Now known as Del Fiore Italian Market and run by Pabon and her sister Lorian Prince, Del Fiore’s makes its own big, overstuffed ravioli on Tuesdays and Wednesdays, stuffed shells and manicotti on Thursdays. Sauce (marinara, meat, vodka) is made every day and the sausage, pasta and sauce are used to make dozens of prepared Italian specialties available to go.
Before he came to Rocky Point, Salvatore D’Elia had teamed up with his brother Felice D’Elia and their brother-in-law Carmine Galeotafiore to open Del Fiore Italian Pork Store in Patchogue (founded in 1971 and still operated by the Galeotafiore family).
D’Elia’s daughters grew up in the business. Pabon recalled, “As soon as I was tall enough to see over the counter, I was working here.” Prince, the younger sister, said, “Everybody in the family was always here — there was no place else to be.” About 10 years ago, the daughters formally took over the business from their father. “It used to be our customers would say ‘I’m going to Sal’s,’ ” Pabon said. “Now it’s ‘I’m going to see the girls.’ ”
Del Fiore sells a full line of Italian imports — cheese, canned tomatoes, olive oil, pasta and even playing cards, aprons and espresso cups. The store is open six days a week and at least one sister is always on the premises. The sisters’ mother, Marie D’Elia, often shows up with one of her three grandchildren in tow. Zach Prince, Adriana and Carmela Pabon — any or all of the kids could grow up to be third-generation owners of Del Fiore Italian Market.
Del Fiore Italian Market
39 Broadway, Rocky Point