On Friday, I took a drive to White Plains to meet to friends for lunch at a new restaurant that opened on April 8. Located off 301 in a strip shopping center, Bobby Rucci’s Famous Italian Deli & Doughboys Restaurant,where the outside definitely said Italian, as it was painted in the colors of the Italian flag. I immediately noticed the restaurant featured a small outdoor patio for dining. The curb appeal was very nice.
Upon entering the deli and restaurant, there were two counters in an “L” shape-one featuring meats and cheeses and the other apparently for checking out. In the middle of the room were wire shelves containing Italian pastas, sauces, mushrooms, artichoke hearts and spices that you would find in a good Italian deli. And at the back of the deli was the dining room. For Friday lunchtime, business was steady with customers coming and going. We saw a sign that said “Hostess will seat you” and so we waited. Employees kept coming and going past us and after 15 minutes, I hailed one of them and asked if we were to wait and she said yes. Five minutes later another employee sat us a table and said someone would be with us shortly.
Twenty minutes went by and no one came but the customers at the next table handed us their menus. After another 10 minutes, I asked a waitress, on her way by our table, if someone was going to take our order and she said yes. We had now been there almost an hour. Finally someone did come and take our order and got our beverages and we ordered the Loaded Fries with melted cheese and bacon bits to start. The waitress put that part of order in and came back with our beverages and took the rest of our order.
I love good food and was really hungry. We decided on the Meyer Lansky Rueben, The Godfather (meatballs, provolone and sauce), and The Rucci (grilled eggplant, portabella mushrooms, roasted red peppers, grilled onions, mozzarella cheese, cracked black pepper). While waiting for our sandwiches and subs, we devoured the loaded fries. They were very good. Soon our meals came and they looked pretty good. But unfortunately they were not good.
The Reuben was chipped meat, not sliced corned beef as you would find in a good Italian restaurant and was dry and greasy. The sauce was almost non-existent. The pickle was forgotten. The marble rye was toasted and was good. The meatball sub was just a meatball sub with very little taste. The meatballs were not anything to brag about and tasted like the frozen ones you buy in your local store. They had no flavor. The Rucci contained very little eggplant and was expected to come with marinara sauce but no sauce. We guessed that you need to ask. The eggplant was grilled and was good. But the sub roll was too much bread for what it contained.
Dessert was worth waiting for as it was the best part of the meal. We ordered the chocolate dipped cannoli and Rucci’s Raisins and Rum Bread Pudding. The bread pudding was awesome as well as the cannoli.
I was surprised that the bill came with no total on it, just what we had ordered. It would have been nice if there was a total so we could decide whether to pay cash or credit. The total for the three of us was $59. The décor was very nice and the place was really clean and that included the restrooms. There were two of them, and you were to choose which one wasn’t occupied.
The restaurant offers a menu for the little boss less than 12 years of age which offers a PB&J on Hearty White, a small salad and several doughboys. Rucci’s also has pizzas, doughboys, lasagna, spaghetti, and Bobby’s Bacon Mac & Cheese. The deli offers many items to purchase including meats and cheeses, pastas and sauces. You can call ahead and order for pickup.
The menu says “we do not serve fast food; we serve great food as fast as we can.” I don’t mind waiting for a table as long as someone acknowledges my presence. I don’t mind being seated but I would expect someone to come by and say I will be right with you and give you a menu. This did not happen on Friday. Unless you have a good 2 hours for lunch, I would suggest not going there to eat. Maybe calling in an order to pickup might be the better way to do it. For this experience I am not in a hurry to go back anytime soon. Maybe I will give them a few months to fix what is wrong and hire some kitchen staff who knows how to prepare food and some wait staff who can handle the lunch crowd (as was overheard from one waitress to another “I saw them but I am not waiting on them”). As a New Yorker, and having eaten in the Bronx and Brooklyn, as well as Philadelphia, where I went to school, I know good Italian food in a deli or a restaurant. Someday I will make the drive to White Plains again.
10579 Theodore Green Blvd
White Plains, Md
Bobby Ruccis Famous Italian Deli Doughboys Facebook Page
Open Mon-Sat 11am to 8pm
Closed on Sunday
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