Portofino Restaurant & Wine Bar Back And Better Than Ever

Published: October 13, 2017 at 12:00 am


Walking into Portofino Restaurant & Wine Bar, no one would ever guess the restaurant had been closed for roughly a year after suffering damages from a popped sprinkler.

The family-owned and -operated restaurant, located at 213 Greenwood Avenue in Bethel's Dolan Plaza, reopened earlier this year, thanks to the determination of brothers Rocco and Lui Selmanti.

They did not want the accident to stop them from continuing to provide the quality, fine Italian dining experience the community loved.

Portofino Restaurant & Wine Bar has made a name for itself as a relaxing destination for family and friends to gather with one another to enjoy lunch and dinner.

Under warm lighting, guests can pull up a chair in the dining or lounge area and be immersed in the old world charm atmosphere or sit out on the patio under umbrellas.

The food is inspired by influences from Europe, the Mediterranean, and American contemporary foods, offering everything from sandwiches and burgers to pasta and meat dishes.

Chef Rocco always uses the freshest, seasonal ingredients to make his meals and his brother Lui, who works the front of the house and bar, uses his creative mind to concoct specialty drinks like his signature "Lui-Tini."

Portofino Restaurant & Wine Bar is a drink destination point, with a large selection of fine wines from all around the world and a distinctive cocktail menu.

Happy Hour specials include Ladies Night every Thursday at the bar, from 5 to 9 pm, where drinks are buy one, get one free. At 8 pm on Thursdays, there is a raffle drawing to win a $100 gift certificate to the restaurant.

Portofino Restaurant & Wine Bar also has live entertainment on Sunday and Tuesday nights, from 6 to 9, with a variety of jazz musicians.

Whether looking to book a small gathering of ten people or a large group of 100 people, guests can reserve their private parties at Portofino Restaurant & Wine Bar for any celebration or corporate function.

Sample of the Menu:

Appetizer: With more than a dozen appetizers on the menu, the calamari is a standout dish. It comes fried in sweet chili peppers or grilled in a pesto sauce.

Salads: The heirloom tomato and fresh mozzarella salad is the epitome of freshness, made with basil, black and white balsamic glaze, and basil oil.

Entrees: Each entree is served with seasonal vegetables and starch, as well as a side house salad in a herb vinaigrette dressing.

Artisan Flat Breads: Customers cannot get enough of the grilled chicken and vegetable flatbread, consisting of pesto sauce, grilled chicken, oven-dried Roma tomatoes, and mozzarella.

Pasta: Portofino Restaurant offers a wide selection of pastas including gluten-free and whole wheat options. The shrimp and scallop saffron risotto is served with peas, and roasted green and yellow peppers. Another pasta choice on the dinner menu is the exotic mushroom ravioli that comes with wilted arugula, truffle oil, and pecorino.

Seafood: For seafood, guests love the grilled wild king salmon baked with local vegetables that are marinated in a citrus sauce.

Meats: The chicken gamberoni consists of egg battered chicken breast with shrimp, sun-dried tomatoes, artichoke hearts, lemon, and a white wine broth.

Specials: Wednesday night is Prime Rib Night.

Childrens' Menu: Available for children 12 years old and under, meals on the children's menu include a small soft drink.

Dessert: All desserts are made on site, including the New York cheesecake, tiramisu, creme brulee, and flowerless chocolate ganache.

Drinks: Portofino Restaurant owner Lui Selmanti's signature drink is the Lui-Tini that gets its beautiful color from the splash of cranberry and its awakening fizz from the club soda. In addition to his specialty drink, there are 11 martini options on the menu, beers, spirits, and an extensive wine list of by-the-glass and by-the-bottle options.

Portofino Restaurant & Wine Bar, 213 Greenwood Avenue in Bethel, is open Tuesday through Thursday, from 11 am to 10 pm; Friday and Saturday, from 11 am to 11 pm; Sunday from, 4 to 10 pm; and is closed on Monday. Seating reservations and catering is accepted by calling 203-797-8131. For more information, visit Portofino Restaurant & Wine Bar's official website; follow them on Facebook; or e-mail at

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