What’s The Dish? – Sabatinis

Maria Dibuo, staff writer

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As a 21-year-old  Wyoming Valley native, I have found that one of the many highlights of the area are the ‘local spots’ for diverse cuisine. Through ‘What’s the Dish?’ I hope to shine light on these establishments for the students of Wilkes University and beyond.

Sabatini’s Pizza has been a family owned and operated Wyoming Valley staple since 1958. Owned by Lindo Sabatini since 2005, the restaurant caters to pizza and beer lovers in the Exeter area and beyond.

For over 50 years, Sabatini’s has cooked up pizza loved by valley natives, as well as other favorites, ranging from hot sandwiches, appetizers, and pastas. Located at 1925 Wyoming Ave. in Exeter, Sabatini’s is a short 15 minute drive from campus via River Road in Wilkes-Barre and Plains.

While pizza has always been their speciality, in 2015, the Sabatini family embarked on a new journey, a craft beer garden and bottle-shop next door to the original Sabatini’s pizza location. The Sabatini’s bar has a large assortment of craft beer for purchase, as well as domestic favorites. On draft, over 20 different beers are available, changing seasonally.

For JT Pavidus of Swoyersville, Pa., Sabatini’s bar is the best of both worlds, close to home.

“Sabatini’s is hands-down, one of my favorite places in the valley,” said Pavidus. “Their pizza is great, and their selection at the bottle-shop is huge. If I stop by for a beer after work, they bring my pizza over to the bar. Some days it’s just a must.”

The Sabatini’s bar prides itself on having a wide variety of beer, including those that are rare or hard to find.

While at Sabatini’s, I enjoyed a pie with bacon, as well as their mozzarella sticks, made with homemade mozzarella cheese. I also sampled a Hershey’s Chocolate Porter, a brewing collaboration of Yuengling, located in Pottsville, Pa, as well as Hershey’s, a chocolatier in Hershey, Pa.

The pizza at Sabatini’s is unlike most eateries in the valley. While typically restaurants adapt the Old Forge style of pizza, Sabatini’s offers a round pie, baked. Their sauce, which may be on the sweeter side to some palates, complements the pizza perfectly. While I enjoy my Sabatini’s pie with bacon, the eatery offers a multitude of toppings, including some unlikely favorites, such as pickles.

“My favorite is the pie with pepperoni,” Pavidus explained. “I’ve been coming here since I was a kid, and that’s always what I’ve ordered.”

Both Sabatini’s Pizza, as well as its bottle-shop bar, offer a family atmosphere and deliver the feeling of a small-town eatery, unlike many chain restaurants in the area.

Menu pricing is relatively inexpensive, with a large pizza weighing in around $11. Prices at their bottle-shop and bar fluctuate, based on brand and type of beer; however, with such a large selection, they have a beverage at everyone’s price point. 

Sabatini’s also holds speciality events at the bottle-shop, including trivia nights and live music.

Robert Burton, also of the Wyoming area, attends events at Sabatini’s regularly.

“A few friends and I usually go to see their Grateful Dead cover band the first Monday of every month. I’ve been to a few trivia nights too,” said Burton. “It’s just a nice, comfortable place to unwind. And you can’t beat the pizza and beer.”

A schedule of Sabatini’s events, as well as more information about the business, can be found on the Sabatini’s Bottleshop and Bar Facebook page.

Sabatini’s Pizza is open daily from 11 a.m. to 10:30 p.m., while the Sabatini’s bar is open from 10 a.m. to midnight.

If you find yourself in the Exeter area, I encourage stopping by, and discovering what the locals have been raving about. I recommend trying the pizza, as well as their other offerings; you really can’t go wrong. Although with homemade mozzarella cheese, I admit, I am partially biased.

When off campus, and commuting to and from, be sure to be aware and responsible, and remember to eat local in the Wyoming Valley.