Passionate About Meatballs

Rick Nichols profiles Basil DeLuca of Villa di Roma and what goes into making those handmade meatballs.

The meatball-making is the province of one man and only one, Basil DeLuca, 56, the middle of the three sons of Domenic (“Kaiser”) and Carmela, Villa di Roma’s founders. Basil does not merely oversee the meatballs; he hand-forms each one – up to 400 a week – singularly and painstakingly and possessively at that counter.

They have become beloved meatballs. And while cooking may not have been the life Basil would have chosen if his father had not mandated it, he is proud of these meatballs – made to the precise standards of his tutor, Uncle Sammy – and of the following they now have.

And in late August or early September, you’ll be able to purchase these meatballs from a new storefront down the block.

Meet the ultimate handmade meatball [Philadelphia Inquirer]