Could you eat a meter’s worth of pizza?
Americans quantify pizza by the number of slices; Italians are more likely to assess the pie’s length, ordering pizza “al metro,” or “by the meter.”
At the newly opened Il Vecchio Forno in Huntington, customers can order pizzas that measure a meter (39 inches) in length, a half meter or a traditional 12-inch round personal pie. No matter the size, all are baked in a wood-burning oven under the supervision of the restaurant’s manager, Sal Apetino. Apetino was the founding pizzaiolo of La Pala in Glen Cove and has done stints at Vivo Osteria in Glen Cove and Casa di Fratelli in Carle Place.
The 13 regular pies, range from the spare marinara (just tomatoes and seasonings) and Margherita (tomatoes, mozzarella, basil) to the more elaborate ortolana (mozzarella, grilled eggplant, zucchini, roasted peppers) and capricciosa (mozzarella, prosciutto, mushrooms, artichokes, olives, anchovies and peppers). Prices for meter-long pies (serves 6 to 8) are $38 to $44; for half-meter (serves 2 to 4), $19 to $22; personal, $9 to $14.
There is also a non-pizza menu which includes antipasti ($8 to $12) such as grilled cuttlefish and octopus with tender potatoes, polenta topped with shrimp and mozzarella, beef carpaccio with arugula and Parmesan. Pastas ($12 to $16) include pappardelle with meat sauce, paccheri with spinach, sausage and shiitake mushrooms, gnocchi with porcini, scarmorza and speck. There are also daily specials of chicken, chops and fish.
Il Vecchio Forno (“the old oven”) is owned by the Biancamano family, whose other business is Sapori del Vallo, a leading distributor of imported Italian products such as fresh pasta, tomatoes, olives, cheese and salumi.
The restaurant takes over the Jericho Turnpike spot previously occupied by Viajo’s Pizza & Pasta. It retains the pizzeria-set-up — tables along one wall, pizza counter along the other — but the décor has been elevated and there is waiter service and wine and beer.
Il Forno Vecchio is at 1277 E. Jericho Tpke., 631-271-8900.