Name: Frank Scarpino
Contact Info: Cortez location: 941-798-3067; Cooper Creek location: 941-351-9595; www.mammaonestionline.com
Hours: Mon - Thu, 11am - 9pm; Fri, Sat, 11am - 10pm; Sun, 3pm - 9pm
Specialty: Seafood, pastas and veal.
How long have you been cooking? For more than 30 years. My family had a restaurant in southern Italy, where I come from. I moved here in 1977 and opened the first Mamma Onesti’s in Sarasota in 1982. I ran that restaurant for 22 years before I retired and went back to Italy for a while. I returned to Bradenton and opened the Mamma Onesti’s on Cortez. Now I have two restaurants in Bradenton, one in Key Largo and one in Chicago.
Do you cook at home? Yes, I love to cook. When I was a little kid, I would sit by my father and learn new recipes. People ask me why I still work in my restaurant kitchens when I could hire people to do it for me. I do it’s what I’m happy doing. I opened restaurants because I love to cook.
What is your favorite comfort food? All kinds of pastas. Penne cognac, rigatoni quattro formaggi, penne a la vodka, portabella mushroom with sausage penne. Those are some of my favorites.
Other than your restaurant, where else do you like to eat? Sign of the Mermaid on Anna Maria. Ophelia’s and Bijou Café in Sarasota.
A message from Chef Frank: I want to say thank you to the community for all of the support I’ve received over the years. I still have some of the same customers coming in for the same specials I had in 1982, bringing their grandkids and even their great-grandkids. It’s really great.
Other information: We are running a half-off coupon in the Bradenton Herald and the Sarasota Herald Tribune throughout September because we want to give a little back to the community that has supported us for so many years.