By Chris Fish
MELBOURNE -- For more than 35 years, Joe Zarski has always worn a smile on his way to work.
"I love what I do," said Mr. Zarski, owner of San Remo Italian Restaurant and Pizzeria in Melbourne. "The moment you wake up in the morning and you have hesitation about your work, that is when you need to stop and find something else."
At San Remo, Mr. Zarski and his son, John, who also fell in love with the restaurant business, serve Italian food, perfected during several years of trial and error, coupled with a caring customer service.
"If anyone has a problem, we will go out of our way to help them," Mr. Zarski said. "I try to be nice to everyone and please everyone. I try to just do my best."
Mr. Zarski said he was exposed to the fast-paced lifestyle of a family-owned business at younger age and was immediately hooked.
Since then, he and his staff have used top-grade ingredients for the restaurant's food, making their own sauces, dough for pizza and other dishes.
Customer favorites for the Italian eatery include pizza, veal a la Cesare, Stromboli, chicken parmesan and pasta e fagioli.
The veal a la Cesare includes veal, baked with layers of provolone, ham and fried eggplant parmesan. This, with pasta, provides a delicious Italian treat.
The pasta e fagioli is a blend of pasta and bean soup, made just as it is in Italy.
The Stromboli dish offers a variety of meats and melted mozzarella, served hot, inside homemade crust with red sauce used for dipping.
San Remo also offers a variety of subs, pizzas and pasta dishes.
For seafood lovers, the Italian eatery offers the perfect variety of seafood dishes made with Italian recipe favorites.
San Remo Italian Restaurant and Pizzeria is also vegetarian-friendly, with several vegetarian pastas and calzones to choose from.
Once customers have finished their main courses, San Remo offers a variety of desserts, including cheesecake, tiramisu and cannolis, to satisfy any sweet tooth.
San Remo also has a wide beer and wine selection available.
For the future, Mr. Zarski said he plans for his son to take over the business, allowing the possibility for his family eatery to live on, past his retirement, and then some.
"We used to joke, back when people were saying the icecaps were melting, that we will be around so long that, one day, San Remo will be a waterside restaurant," he said.
San Remo Italian Restaurant and Pizzeria is located at 1400 N. Harbor City Blvd., in Melbourne.
Hours are 11 a.m. to 10 p.m. Monday through Saturday.
For more information, call (321) 254-0655.