How to ring in 2011 in Lehigh Valley?  That was the dilemma for Erin and I on New Year’s Eve.  We were torn between spending the evening at the Sands Casino Resort Bethlehem or visiting a restaurant.   That’s when it came to me; we would have dinner with some friends at Buca di Beppo in Whitehall.

New Year’s Eve is a crazy time for restaurants, so it was a welcome surprise that I was able to make a reservation for our party of four.  As I was promised on the phone, we were seated within minutes of our arrival.

Since meals at Buca di Beppo is served family style, it took a real team effort to decide on the evening’s menu.  Keith, our waiter was able to make some recommendations and after 15 minutes the decision was made.  We were hungry so we chose to start with the Caesar Salad and Mozzarella Garlic Bread.  Our main course included Chicken Carbonara, Spicy Chicken Rigatoni and a side of the Italian Broccoli Romano.

As the appetizers arrived, we knew that no one would be leaving this table hungry.  The delicious Mozzarella Garlic Bread was gone within minutes of its arrival.  Our main entrees soon followed and didn’t disappoint.  The group’s feeling was that the Chicken Carbonara was the highlight of the meal.  As much as we tried to convince ourselves, there was just no room for the Chocolate Chip Cannolis.

Our fantastic dinner at Buca di Beppo took less than two hours and we were home in plenty of time to see the Bethlehem fireworks from the comfort of our couch.

How did you celebrate New Year’s Eve?