Wed04162014

Last updateTue, 04 Nov 2014 9pm

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Eating at Angelo’s in Montross recalls the definition of serendipity

Having lunch or dinner in Westmoreland County at Angelo’s Pizza Restaurant in Montross reminds customers of the definition of serendipity - making a fortunate discovery.

The restaurant located on Courthouse Square in downtown looks like the typical pizzeria but diners learn quickly it is much, much more.  

With a menu that features Oysters Rockefeller, blackened scallops and crab cakes that have been written up in the New York Times, Angelo’s has become one of the most popular restaurants on the Northern Neck.

“We buy the best food and we take pride in what we do,” said Angelo’s owner Bryan Oliff. “The bottom line is the food has to be good.”

Oliff has owned Angelo’s since 1991. And, he has transformed it from a small local pizza place to a bustling full service restaurant with 40 employees that is open seven days a week all year round and has developed a strong regional following.

Oliff who grew up in Westmoreland County and played high school sports at Washington & Lee High School went to Virginia Wesleyan College in Norfolk and then stayed in the Virginia Beach area to work.

“But I always wanted to come back home, I always wanted to do my own business,” he said. His wife, Kari, works with him at the popular restaurant located at 15835 Kings Highway. The couple have two children, Dillion, 17, and Garrett, 14.

Angelo’s menu features a wide compliment of seafood dishes including soft shell crabs, fresh flounder and fried oysters. There is a steamer bar that offers shrimp, Alaskan crab legs, clams, mussels and fresh oysters from the Rappahannock, Potomac and Chesapeake Bay.

The New York strip steaks are mouth watering and served with a variety of salads and wines. “We offer almost all the local wines and many others,” Oliff said.

And in true Angelo’s tradition -- the original Angelo’s opened as pizza shop in 1984 -- there are scrumptious pizzas galore along with a broad selection of pasta dishes like baked spaghetti and eggplant parmesan.

Customers will also find a wide variety of Greek items on the menu including a gyro platter, Greek salads and souvlaki. Sandwiches, wraps and burgers are also tasty and well received.

Assisted by his catering manager, Mark Jones, Oliff has developed a thriving catering business and can serve as many as 500 guests at the location of their choosing.

“We do weddings, oyster roasts, pig roasts and private parties,” Oliff said. “We can do whatever the customers want and we cook it right in front of them so they know it is fresh.” In recent weeks the restaurant has catered events for the Volunteer Fire Department in Kinsale and the Montross Rescue Squad.

“There is not a day that I don’t love coming to work,” said Oliff. “It’s a great business.” Looking at the steady stream of daily diners at the restaurant, it is obvious that Angelo’s customers feel the same way.

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