Fiorella Italian Restaurant in Lake Worth is hidden away, but worth seeking out


Fiorella on Charleston Shores Boulevard in suburban Lake Worth.



A popular dining destination in a suburban Lake Worth strip center offers a well-prepared menu of Italian-American favorites.

By Alan J. Wax

It was a recent Saturday night and Fiorella Italian Restaurant and Pizzeria was rocking.

Guests packed the 150-seat dining room of this family owned restaurant that’s almost hidden in an out-of-the-way strip center on Charleston Shores Boulevard in Lake Worth. Others meanwhile, lingered outside, waiting to be called to be seated. Reservations are not accepted for parties of fewer than five.

Despite it’s location, Fiorella since it was opened in 2005 by Franco Guardacione and his wife, Fiorella, appears to have earned quite a following.  It was recommended to us by a snowbird neighbor whose other home is on Long Island.

It’s easy to see why Fiorella’s is so popular. The menu is a familiar litany of Italian-American favorites that arrive well-prepared in decent-sized portions at moderately high prices.

Fiorella’s main diniing room.

Inside the noisy main, grey brick-walled, dining room that’s dimly illuminated by high-hat lights, guests were tucking into their dinners while others, apparently long-time regulars who’d completed their evening dining, got hugs from the restaurant’s staffers. Despite a drop ceiling of black acoustical tiles the dining room was buzzing with conversations and piped-in music, registering as high as 86 decibels on my phone’s sound meter application (that’s as loud as road traffic heard inside a car).

We were told there would be a half-hour wait to be seated, though we could sit sooner if we opted for a high-top table in the bar area. We rejected the offer. Perhaps, we should not have done so as we ultimately were seated in a booth just outside the constantly opening and closing door to the restrooms with their malodorous scents of sanitizers.

Be that as it may, we enjoyed the dinner despite occasional lapses by our overworked server, “Magic” Mike, a burly, shaved headed gent.

Tender knots soon were delivered our table. They were warm, unlike the room-temperature ones we received on an earlier visit, and were not overly garlicky.

The included salad was nothing to write home about, a bowl of lettuce, a few cucumber slices, a single bite of tomato, and rounds of bitter purple onions —all topped by a balsamic vinaigrette. On a previous visit, I enjoyed a flavorful rendition of minestrone soup.

New York-style pizza.

With pizzeria in the restaurant’s name, trying a pie (no slices) was a necessity. I opted for a 10-inch New York-style cheese pie ($13) as an appetizer and I was happy that I did. The crust was crisp, but foldable, and topped by a gobs of cheese, albeit a tad oily, and a well-banded red sauce. I could have joyfully continued munching on the pizza had I not also ordered the salad and an entree.

On this Saturday evening, I opted for eggplant rollatini ($26), razor-thin slices of melanzana topped with red sauce and melted cheese. The ricotta cheese filling seemed a tad bland, but the red sauce that accompanied it and also atop the al-dente side of penne, brought up the flavor profile. Hint: if you like your pasta on the soft side, tell your server.

Chicken francese.

Veal parmigiana.

Minnestrone soup.

Chicken francese ($27), a bit too mushy on our first visit, was perfectly tender this time and bursting with lemony flavors from a sauce that for some reason appeared to have an orange tint.

Veal parmigiana ($29), ordered on our first visit, also was a tender rendition.

For those who are gluten-free, there’s a separate menu.

Despite some kitchen and service lapses, kudos are in order for Fiorella’s owners, the Guardaciones, emigres from Naples, Italy, who first settled on Long Island in the 1980s. On Long Island, Franco worked at the Patchogue outpost of one Long Island’s top pizza purveyors, Umberto’s Pizza and Restaurant. In 1992, the couple and their sons moved to Boca Raton, where Franco began a 14-year stint as a chef at Renzo’s of Boca. He also worked for Cheney Brothers, the restaurant food distribution company.

When our check arrived, we were surprised, well, kind of, by a 3 percent credit card surcharge on our $71 total check (gotta read the fine print on the menu). The check also offered a discount for cash, $5 for two entrees, $10 for two. We paid by card.

Despite everything, we left sated, knowing that Fiorella is the kind of place we’d likely return.

Fiorella Italian Restaurant and Pizzeria

7008 Charleston Shores Blvd., Lake Worth, FL 33467


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No ResponsesOne Response% Responsesso far.

  1. Joan Senator says:

    I lived in Patchogue and don’t recall an Umberto’s there.

  2. Joan Senator says:

    Was there an error in my comment. Got some kind of error message

  3. Anne D says:

    Fiorella’s is one of our favorite places for a nice Italian dinner. We’ve been there many times. Can’t remember a bad meal! “Magic” Mike really does hustle, but it’s not easy in “season”!

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