Commack Heats Up with Anthony's Coal Fired Pizza

Restaurant sees busy opening day at its new location in the Peppertree Commons.

Commack was red hot Wednesday as Anthony's Coal Fired Pizza started up its ovens for opening day.

Tables were full with hungry lunch crowds as locals enjoyed the restaurant's signature "well done" pizzas, oven-baked chicken wings and other menu items.

Rob Alster, who had been a fan of the chain's Woodbury location, brought his friends along to check out the new Commack site. He gave the pizza two thumbs up in between bites.

Another popular menu item is the "sidechick chicken wings." "No one does it like we do," Chuck Locke, vice president of operations for the Florida-based chain said.

"The wings are delicious," Susan Mirman, who came for lunch with friends, said. "The service is excellent too."

There are about 10 pizzerias in Commack already, but Locke said that the restaurant doesn't feel the competition because its products are made much differently.

"We use all coal. There's no gas ovens. Ours has that charred taste you can't get anywhere else," he said.

The restaurant also stands out for its high-end ingredients. Locke said that owner Anthony Bruno, a Long Island native, interviewed 15 tomato vendors from Italy and chose the best one to purchase their crop from for the entire year and have shipped over.

The food's authenticity is a key factor in the chain's success on Long Island, as the area's Italian population has helped the restaurant become a local favorite wherever it builds. "These people know good food," Locke said. The restaurant has also come to fruition due to the resident snowbirds who became fans of the chain while visiting its original Florida locations.

The Commack site is the restaurant's fourth Long Island location on the island. Bruno plans to open three more within the next year.

"It's exciting for our customers because now they don't have to drive to Woodbury for dinner anymore," Locke said.

The opening has also given job seekers a leg up in the employment field. Locke said that there are currently 60 workers at the Commack location.

With few pubs in the area, the eatery's full bar is another draw to the restaurant. Drink specials include $5 martini and meatball nights on Wednesdays, starting at 5 p.m., and half-off draft beer on Mondays and Tuesdays.

The restaurant also features a smaller, separate room for private parties.

Prices at the restaurant are reasonable, with lunch size pizzas for $7.50. The dinner menu features a 1-foot small pie for $16.95 and a 16-inch pie for $19.95. 

Anthony's Coal Fired Pizza is planning to have its grand opening in about four weeks, in which it will team up with a local charity for the day to give back to the community.

The company recently donated more than $8,000 from its Wantagh opening on Jan. 15, to Island Harvest’s Hurricane Sandy Relief efforts.

Irondog February 28, 2013 at 01:48 PM
The restaurant also stands out for its high-end ingredients. Locke said that owner Anthony Bruno, a Long Island native, interviewed 15 tomato vendors from Italy and chose the best one to purchase their crop from for the entire year and have shipped over. That's fantastic. But as a "Long island native" as Anthony touts, you couldn't find a local struggling tomato farmer on Long Island to purchase them from? Good luck...
IMHO February 28, 2013 at 02:48 PM
Good point IronDog.. Buy Fresh, Buy Local !!
JERC February 28, 2013 at 04:35 PM
I'll take LaScala's large pie over the overpriced pie at Anthony's any day.
GLENN February 28, 2013 at 07:42 PM
Don't be so rude
richmurt February 28, 2013 at 08:04 PM
Annmarie that is not rude it is true! They are over priced you can't buy 1 slice they have no pasta. I was in there yesterday and 3 tables sent their food back. Everyone has an opinion.
Ice February 28, 2013 at 08:34 PM
This is not a "slice" joint. That is not their business plan. It is a sit down restaurant. There are enough of those around. Comparing this place to La Scala's is like comparing Outback to Lugers!
gmarine March 01, 2013 at 12:44 AM
I was there tonight. It was just OK. Didnt care for the wings, they were way too salty, chewy and dry, covered in fried onions which I really didnt understand. Meatball and ricotta pizza was pretty good. Philly cheesesteak pizza was not good. All you tasted was worcestire sauce. In their defense there had to be a mistake in the kitchen because there is no way this could be normal. When we told the waiter I thought he might offer to replace it with something else but he just said he will let the kitchen know about it. The one thing that will keep us from going back is that they only serve bottled soda for $2.65. My wife and I would each have a couple diet sodas with dinner and almost every other restaurant there is free refills. The food isnt good enough for me to pay $20 for drinks for the family. Overall it was a disappointment.
Marisa Fedele March 01, 2013 at 05:57 PM
I just got a takeout lunch pizza with mushrooms there and thought it was very good. Is it typical New York pizza? No. But you have plenty of other options if that's what you're looking for. I thought the crispy, somewhat charred crust added a nice flavor, and there weren't gobs of cheese to make it super oily. I'd like to go back soon to try a sit-down dinner and enjoy a couple of the locally brewed beers I saw on tap at the bar. (Blue Point White IPA?! I'm sold!)
Rob March 04, 2013 at 01:34 AM
Got take out on saturday. Staff at take out counter was extemely rude. Ruined the experience. Im sure I'll get back there but not going to rush back. Half the pie was burnt, the other half was "well done". I was excited for the opening so was overall disappointing.
LINANA March 04, 2013 at 04:53 PM
Wanted to try the place, but now will wait--follow reviews and see if they've improved. If they are overpriced and mediocre, they won't last long. If their business model is pizza (but don't serve slices) & wings, I don't think they'll be around long. Most people going out to dinner want more choices.
Commack 18 March 05, 2013 at 04:47 AM
Went there on Sat and got a small pie to go. It was way over price and very well done, almost burnt.
Peter Wagner March 06, 2013 at 02:39 PM
I haven't tried it, but looking forward to it. As for comments on the Patch, too many folks use this as their personal sounding board to complain about every little thing and hide behind their "fake" names instead of giving constructive criticism to the business owners themselves. It's unfortunate, but that's what message boards, blogs, and bulletin boards have become. Businesses fail or are successful because of superior product, customer service, and/or price. Can't always have all three, but you have to try. I hope that the owners monitor these boards and facebook, twitter, and the like so they can gain valuable feedback.
Peter Wagner March 06, 2013 at 02:41 PM
By the way, kudos to those that use their real names and constructive criticism that may help these owners survive where others in that location have failed.
John March 07, 2013 at 03:26 PM
This is going to be a tough sell in a town that has some of the best pizza on all of Long Island!! La Scala & Emilio's just to name a couple. The dining experience better be good because those two other options for great pizza are hard to top.
Audrey Gulino March 08, 2013 at 12:13 PM
Had take out pie the other night and the wings both were delish:)
foodfan March 08, 2013 at 06:16 PM
Thought everything was great. Wings, Pizza, Sandwich. Can not wait to go back. It may not be for everyone but from what I have seen, it was packed and the service was great. That is the wonderful thing about Commack... There is something for everyone. If you don't like this food, there are about 10 other restaurants within blocks.
Tracy March 09, 2013 at 02:37 PM
Lol... Food fan - you must be an employee. Omg.... The pizza was AWFUL. Crust was brunt on the edges but mushy and underdone in the center. It also tasted like frozen premade dough. Well done? Not really. Before I could eat the second slice, it was cold and mealy. The sauce seemed good, with nice chunks of fresh tomatoes, but there just wasn't enough of it. And the eggplant on the pizza was completely tasteless. Oh yeah.... Ordered an unsweetened iced tea to a drink and I got a bottle, instead of fresh; so forget about refills, and thank you for the gross preservatives. This place reminded me of Los Angeles eateries..... All about appearances and no attention to the actual food. There was more emphasis on the bar-like atmosphere than the menu. I don't want a special martini or to watch the game on huge plasma tvs. I want a great tasting pie. I'll stick with La Scala or Emillios. Those are actual pizzerias. This place is a bar with pizza.
bee sure March 20, 2013 at 10:39 PM
Went to the Anthonys in Palm Beach Gardens Florida. Pizza was excellent, garlic flavor in the sauce & it was cooked the way their sign states, Well Done. So if you don't like well done pizza don't eat there. The family size salad is fantastic. Stopped at the Commack location last Thursday and enjoyed the pizza again. They had samples of their meatballs & ricotta cheese, it was delicious.
moron g March 28, 2013 at 04:12 PM
I get the wookie wookies fro thinking about this pie, pie in the skie, slice is nice! Coal fired wings and ribs good as pizza!


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