Rich, authentic Italian made at Shell's Pasta.
Today, fewer people have time or experience coaxing flavors from foods by slow roasting and baking them. Many don’t even know how. One Lake restaurant owner and cook, Michelle “Shell” Civitate, has the knowledge, experience, and time. She practices daily at Shell’s Pasta Emporium where one bite “hooks” diners who become regulars, returning again and again for satisfying, homemade Italian food.
Easy-to-use menus stand ready at the counter and on dining tables, dressed with red and white checkered cloths. One menu lists pizza and sandwich options while another lists pastas. Both menus include appetizer, salad, drink, and dessert choices. Customers simply check boxes beside the type of pasta they prefer and add the topping they want. They do the same for pizza and sandwiches, or you can select the special of the day.
What distinguishes Shell’s pizzas and pasta is Old County recipes used to prepare them. Handed down from great-grandparents on both sides of Michelle’s family, they are authentic. More important, they are recipes that slow roast and bake foods to deliver maximum flavors. One bite of the original savory pizza sauce under delicious, lightly-spiced meatballs proves both exceed expectations. The same can be said of the pasta sauces — whether original, spicy, or pink blending red and alfredo.
One noteworthy salad is a fresh mix of tomato wedges, red onion slices, crumbled Feta cheese, and Shell’s homemade Italian dressing, perfectly balanced with olive oil, spices, and vinegar. The vegetables haven’t languished in the dressing so long as to lose their texture or flavor; the onions even retain some of their natural crispness. The entire blend is a delicious compliment to an entrée.
A dessert option is the classic Italian cannoli, a pastry shell filled with slightly sweetened ricotta cheese mixed with chocolate chips. Two other Italian dessert favorites on the menu are Tiramisu and Italian Creme Cake. A light, refreshing option is an Italian ice.
Wines, beer, and Italian sodas round out the traditional fountain drink beverages found at most restaurants. The red Cabernet is both savory and smooth, but the other wines are surely as fine.
In addition to wonderful foods with depths in flavors, Shell’s Pasta Emporium is a wonderful place to gather. While it may not be a sidewalk café in the Old Country, it has sidewalk seating for those balmy Lake days when the temperatures are perfect and the breezes cool. Through the winter months, when Prewitt’s Pointe Shopping Center continues to pulse, workers, locals, and tourists meet to breathe the scents of hot Italian ovens, break breadsticks, and chat while owner “Shell” bustles between the counter and kitchen. She seems to know many of her customers’ names, and they certainly know hers. They are exactly what Shell’s Pasta Emporium promises: they’ve been hooked after one bite of authentic Old Country Italian cuisine. Slow roasted and homemade makes a difference!
About the restaurant
3924 Jr Prewitt Parkway, Osage Beach
Open Monday-Saturday 11 a.m.-8 p.m.; Closed Sunday