New proprietor takes over duties operating Stone House Restaurant
By Julia Green
Just in time for summer, local residents and weekend visitors in Roxbury have a new location to check out for lunch or dinner.
Long Island native Gabriel Cardamone is the new proprietor of The Stone House Restaurant at Shephard Hills, in the location of the former Mary’s Cookin’ Again at Shephard Hills.
Cardamone began his career in the culinary business 15 years ago as a sous chef at the Owl’s Nest in Highmount, where he worked while he attended Delhi College to study hospitality. Following his graduation, Cardamone headed to Florida to further his culinary career.
“I was very fortunate and worked under some really great experienced people, and I brought that experience back to this area,” he said. “I went there on vacation and never came back.”
At least, not until 12 years later, when he returned to the Catskills, where he spent weekends as a child. Last year he worked weekends as the head chef at the restaurant at Shephard Hills, running the kitchen until a new prospect surfaced.
“Basically, the opportunity arose to start my own business there, and I gladly took it,” Cardamone said. “We opened on May 1 of this year.”
These days, fresh flowers populate the tables and arrangements adorn The Stone House Restaurant at Shephard Hills, which sits amid sprawling golf greens and lush foliage and overlooks the lake. Three new fireplaces and all new lighting add to the improved ambience, and the understated sound of music by the likes of Tony Bennett provides the musical backdrop.
Cardamone is still in the kitchen, though now the restaurant features a full menu, which includes appetizers, soup, salads and light fare as well as dinner specials that change nightly. Choice steaks, which Cardamone calls “the best steaks in town,” fresh seafood and homemade pasta populate the entrée choices, which run between $10 and $16 during the week. A children’s menu is also available.
And, he points out, despite its location on a golf course, the restaurant doesn’t just cater to the golf crowd.
“It’s more of a turn toward a family restaurant open to the public,” he said, adding that the lakefront location adds another pleasant component to the experience of dining at The Stone House Restaurant at Shephard Hills.
“It’s lakefront dining,” he said. “On top of the atmosphere inside, which looks over the lake, you have lakefront dining outside on our patio. The scenery there, you’re not looking right out over Route 28 or Route 30. It’s probably the nicest place you can dine outside or in.”
And, as the business gets into its full swing, Cardamone said they are looking to incorporate live outdoor music on the patio on weekends and a Sunday brunch buffet. Long-term, he hopes to install a large gazebo outside the restaurant that would fit 100 people.
Cardamone said that the feedback thus far has been extremely positive from a clientele comprised of golfers as well as families and weekend visitors.
“Everybody’s been very happy so far,” Cardamone said. “It’s casual dining at an affordable price, with great food, a wonderful atmosphere, impeccable service and a great value.”
Reservations for tables at The Stone House Restaurant at Shephard Hills are accepted and encouraged; the restaurant is open daily with the exceptions of Sunday and Wednesday. Lunch hours begin at 11:30 a.m. and the restaurant re-opens for dinner at 5 p.m.