Toni Cipriani Liberty Tree

Toni shows that Momma's really is the ideal place for some quiet conversation.

Toni Cipriani: Loves His Momma's Sauce is an article written for the Liberty Tree newspaper by Nicholas Morris in July 2001.


Toni Cipriani Liberty Tree 2

A glimpse of the tomato sauce trade... in action.

Toni Cipriani, heir to Liberty City's best-known Italian empire, Momma's Restaurant, the famed St. Mark's eatery where the great and the not-so-great get their meatballs, has long been known as a man with a temper. Years ago, he broke a diner's arm for suggesting the ziti was over-baked and he's been known to tenderize the face of customers who say his veal is too tough. This was all seen as part of the charm. While his mother slaved away in the kitchen, producing masterpiece after masterpiece, Toni was the front-of-house guy with not that much upstairs. A bad temper and a heart of gold. Or so the papers told us. But not any more.

Toni is under police investigation for his association with the Leone family, for who is he believed to have carried any number of contract hits over the past few years. His exact relationship with Salvatore Leone remains unclear, "I buy tomato sauce off him, that's it," said Mr. Cipriani when asked, but federal investigators think there may be more than meets the eye to the psycho in the kitchen from St. Marks.

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