SPRINGFIELD (CBS) — The streets of Springfield have seen plenty of changes over the years, but for more than five decades, one thing has remained–The Red Rose.

Italian immigrants Nicola and Edda Caputo opened Red Rose back in the 1960s, and with hard work and great food, they built it into one of New England’s busiest and more enduring restaurants.

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Meatballs at The Red Rose.

Today, it’s run by their kids, Tony and Rita.

“It’s a family restaurant,” says Tony. “We do pizzas, we do Italian food, real traditional Italian food. It’s a loud and bright place and you can come with lots of people. Like having your Sunday dinner not at home anymore, but having it at Red Rose.”

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Inside the restaurant. (WBZ-TV)

“When you walk in here, you feel like you’re walking into our house,” Rita says. “My dad used to always say, ‘make the people feel like they’re actually coming to eat at your house, and when you’re serving them at the table, like they’re eating at your table at home,’ and that’s exactly the feeling that people get when they come in here.”

And they also get pizzas, pastas, and parms, big enough to feed a family.

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A slice of pizza at The Red Rose. (WBZ-TV)

“You’re gonna come here when you’re hungry, and you’re gonna leave full,” says Tony.

“Huge value for your money,” says Rita.

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Pasta with clams from The Red Rose. (WBZ-TV)

Since Red Rose serves so many red sauce classics, the marinara here has to be perfect, and under Rita’s watchful eye, it always is.

“Being in this business for so many years, I can just look at the sauce and tell you if it’s missing salt or pepper or something,” Rita says.

“She can see it, yeah, she can see the color of the sauce, did they over cook it, is it too deep red, is it not red enough,” Tony says.

“When I stir it I look for the garlic and I look for the basil. There’s got to be plenty of garlic and plenty of basil in there,” Rita adds.

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Spaghetti at The Red Rose. (WBZ-TV)

And whether they’re back in the kitchen, out in the dining room, or doing whatever else needs to be done, Tony and Rita are proud to carry on a family tradition.

“I’m so proud to say we’re part of Red Rose,” says Tony. “There’s a sense of pride that you can’t buy, you can’t create, it has to be in you, and we have a sense of pride that just goes a long way.”

Watch Phantom Gourmet on Saturdays and Sundays at 10:30 and 11 a.m. on myTV38.


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