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Mamma Lombardi's in Holbrook: A river runs through it

Mozzarella in carrozza at Mamma Lombardi's in Holbrook.

Mozzarella in carrozza at Mamma Lombardi's in Holbrook. (Oct. 2012) Credit: Newsday Peter Gianotti

The river of tomato sauce that goes from Great Neck to Montauk has many tributaries. One flows straight to Holbrook.

It crests at Mamma Lombardi's, which has been preparing Italian-American favorites for decades, emphasis on southern-style cooking.

This restaurant is the original in a mini-empire that takes in eateries in Port Jefferson and Patchogue, a solid pizzeria next door, and a nearby catering facility. There's also a small industry in Mamma Lombardi products, headed by its satisfying red sauce.

The menu covers all the familiar fare and adds to it. Recommended: zeppelin-size pork braciola, hearty pork chops with vinegar peppers or alla pizzaiola, generous chicken campagnola with sausages, swordfish Livornese, pasta e fagioli, tripe Neapolitan-style, fired-up penne arrabbiata and zesty linguine alla puttanesca, and a hefty version of mozzarella in carrozza.

There will be leftovers.

Mamma Lombardi's 400 Furrows Rd., Holbrook; 631-737-0774.

Mozzarella in carrozza at Mamma Lombardi's.

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