Lake George Area Restaurant Reviews

Mama Riso's Italian Restaurant
Lake George Road, Lake George, NY
(518) 668-2550
Summary: Excellent service and atmosphere, wonderfully authentic Italian in a year-round family-style setting

Mama Riso’s is easy to find. It is the first restaurant on the left as you make your way north into the village of Lake George. Mama Riso’s has been a tradition in Lake George since 1953 and is one of the few restaurants which remain open year round, thanks to a loyal local clientele. We visited Mama Riso’s on a hot 90-degree evening in May. Given the choice of dining indoors in the more elegant air-conditioned setting with table cloths and cloth napkins or dining al fresco on the large screened in porch,we chose to be outdoors. The porch is cooled by large fans (air conditioning is used during the summer months) and overlooks lively Canada Street on one side with views of trees, and faces Prospect Mountain on the other side. We were warmly greeted with a “How’s it going” in Italian by Sal Ianni, a partner in the restaurant. His manner is casual and gregarious…you instantly like the guy, and feel that this is definitely a restaurant that serves great food and doesn’t put on airs.

Mama Riso’s is a favorite of locals, couples and families. I would feel very comfortable bringing my three children under 7 years old here despite the fact that they are not “perfect” children. This restaurant certainly caters to families offering many dishes “family style”, pitchers of soda, and even a row of high chairs to accommodate the little ones.

We enjoyed a peaceful night without the kids this time, starting with the Mussels Marina. The sauce for the mussels was very nice, not too spicy. Next was the fabulous fresh mozzarella which we enjoyed with wonderful tomatoes. We were surprised by the quality of the tomatoes and asked how they got such great tomatoes before June. David responded that they have to go a little further and pay a little more but it’s worth it, and we agree! For dinner, I sampled their most popular dish the Chicken Scarpariello (which is most often served “family style”). Hand-cut chicken with sausage, olives and hot cherry peppers - just a little spicy but not too hot, and packed with flavor– highly recommended!!! My partner ordered the Veal Sorrentino which he said was very good and tender. I also sampled the home made linguini and enjoyed the Cioppino, a fisherman’s platter of mussels, clams, calamari, scallops and Shrimp steamed in that same sweet and delicious marinara sauce on a bed of linguini.

After dinner we were offered the famous cheesecake. Though I was quite
satisfied after the generous entrée portions I sampled some, which wins
my award for best cheesecake! Lovingly baked by restaurant co-owner and
Chef, David Betcke from a recipe that has been in the family for 20
years, all I can say is save room!! To learn more about Mama Riso's, visit their website.