Maria Nini, grandson Luca and daughter Claudia Cracchiolo.Sal’s is located in Fork Union and in Scottsville and now at Lake Monticello so fans of the restaurant don’t have to go far for their terrific Italian fare.

Owners Sal and his wife Maria Nini, once ran Vito’s in Cumberland County before opening the Fork Union restaurant, which is now being managed by Sal’s son. The restaurant in Scottsville is owned and operated by one of his daughters. But it is daughter Claudia Cracchiolo, along with her husband Jiacomo, that own the Lake Monticello restaurant located where Sydney’s was. Sal and Maria, lend their cooking skills and support.

Sal grew up in New York, and began learning the restaurant business at seventeen and has now been in business for 30 years. Claudia herself began learning her father’s business at an early age, washing dishes at nine then serving at fourteen.

“I love the people, the food, the culture,” said Claudia. “The whole experience of Italian dining. It’s a passion, the food, family and tradition. All our recipes are passed down from past generations.” It’s obvious that Claudia and the entire family take pride in what they do and like other successful business, the customer is the cornerstone of a thriving restaurant. It is what Sal Nini and his family believe in.

Speaking of the food, it is still the delicious vast variety that one has come to expect of Sal’s. Their soups are appetizing and they also feature more seafood, including calamari and mussels. All the eggplant dishes are made with paper-thin Italian eggplant, home grown in Sal’s garden. The veal is hand-cut and the desserts are made from scratch.

“Everything is made fresh every day,” said Claudia. One of their newer items is called Schicciatta, a fresh baked crust, split and stuffed with ham, salami, pepperoni, provolone and mozzarella cheese, lettuce, tomato, onion, house dressing and topped with garlic butter. The smaller version is known as a Tostito.

Their menu features many of the popular dishes associated with Italian restaurants and Sal’s special touch, making it a flavorful experience, including pizza, pasta dishes, strombolis and calzones, soups and sides, hot and cold subs, beef and chicken dishes, and much more.

Sal’s is open daily for lunch and dinner, or take-out, from 11 a.m. -10 p.m. and 10:30 on Saturdays. They are closed on Tuesdays. For more information, call 434-589-7230.