Home / Sports / I'll have what Alex Ovechkin is having: Fans can't get enough of Mamma Lucia's chicken Parmesan

I'll have what Alex Ovechkin is having: Fans can't get enough of Mamma Lucia's chicken Parmesan

4CNAMW4EL42KDN5SUSSZR2G3OM - I'll have what Alex Ovechkin is having: Fans can't get enough of Mamma Lucia's chicken Parmesan

Alex Ovechkin’s go-to order at Mamma Lucia (Courtesy of David Kottler)

If it’s sport day and the Capitals are enjoying at house, there’s an order of hen Parmesan, pasta, Italian bread and 4 (sure, 4) other sauces specifically ready for Alex Ovechkin sure for Kettler Capitals Iceplex in Arlington. It’s a high-calorie culinary custom that dates again to the captain’s rookie yr.

All the way through his 17 years in Washington, former Capitals Common Supervisor George McPhee and his spouse, Leah, have been dependable shoppers of Mamma Lucia, the small Italian chain that first opened in Rockville in 1992. When David Kottler was the executive at Mamma Lucia’s Bethesda location 5 years in the past, the eating place incessantly stuffed supply orders for 6 of McPhee’s gamers. Since then, an increasing number of Capitals have gravitated towards more healthy foods ready by way of the group’s in-house chef and, ahead of this season, Capitals director of group products and services Rob Tillotson known as Kottler to tell him that just one participant was once enthusiastic about supply going ahead.

“Who’s the only?” Kottler requested, although he may’ve guessed.

As ESPN’s Emily Kaplan documented in October after Ovechkin was the primary participant in 100 years to open the season with a hat trick in consecutive video games, Mamma Lucia stays a vital a part of his nutrition.

“It’s a practice from day one,” Ovechkin advised Kaplan. “They have got the Italian meals all the time after we got here to the rink, and it’s very scrumptious.”

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(Courtesy of David Kottler)

A framed reproduction of the ESPN article, signed by way of Ovechkin, now hangs in all six of the places that Kottler manages. Final week, Brooks Orpik introduced extra consideration to Ovechkin’s Mamma Lucia obsession in an editorial for the Avid gamers’ Tribune, even if the Capitals’ veteran defenseman, or much more likely his ghostwriter, misspelled the eating place’s identify all over.

“Now we have a chef right here who prepares our pregame foods,” writes Orpik, who additionally referred to Ovechkin’s nutrition as “borderline inspiring.” “Ovi all the time orders the similar factor — Mama Luccia, which is that this pasta dish that’s like hen parm with noodles, bread, cheese, the type of factor you need to take a five-hour nap after consuming. He makes a large show of it too. There’s no disgrace. It’ll be 11 within the morning, approach ahead of any person is considering consuming lunch, and Ovi will stroll into the eating house yelling, ‘Mama Luccia! Mama Luccia!’ I don’t know. It’s bizarre, however it sort of feels standard now.”

Whilst the Avid gamers’ Tribune piece turns out to erroneously recommend that the Capitals’ group chef prepares a Mamma Lucia-inspired meal for Ovechkin, Kottler confident me that he will get the true factor, directly from the supply. The regimen, no less than for the previous 5 years, hasn’t modified. On house sport days, a chef displays up on the Bethesda location at nine a.m. to arrange Ovechkin’s common order. A motive force hits the street with the meals by way of nine:30 and drops it off at Kettler Capitals Iceplex.

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Alex Ovechkin’s common supply order from Mamma Lucia (Courtesy of David Kottler)

“And then Ovi does no matter he does,” Kottler mentioned. “I believe [Nicklas] Backstrom likes to return over and take hold of some meals from him every now and then.”

Now, about the ones 4 sauces. Again when Kottler was once incessantly sending six orders of hen Parmesan to the Capitals on sport days, he incorporated meat, Alfredo, marinara and mushroom Marsala sauces along side the pasta, as a result of gamers’ tastes various. It’s unclear what Ovechkin does with all 4 of the in my view packaged sauces, however after Ovechkin and his spouse, Anastasia, dropped by way of Mamma Lucia for dinner one evening previous this season, Kottler has an concept about which one he likes easiest.

“They sat down and he mentioned, ‘David, I need my meal,’ ” Kottler recalled. “I believe she were given a salad, however he sought after her to peer what he eats on a daily basis. I introduced out all 4 sauces, and I spotted the Marsala mushroom sauce was once his favourite.”

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David Kottler and Alex Ovechkin (Courtesy of David Kottler)

Whilst there aren’t any rapid plans so as to add an “Ovechkin particular” to the menu, Kottler, who’s a fan of Mamma Lucia’s veal saltimbocca, mentioned there has been an uptick in hen Parmesan orders for the reason that Avid gamers’ Tribune article was once revealed, together with right through Recreation three on Tuesday.

“It’s simply long gone loopy since then,” Kottler mentioned. “Tuesday evening at Mamma Lucia is purchase one pizza, get the second at $2.99. … I had an enormous supply evening. Numerous other folks have been getting two pizzas, plus a hen parm dinner. A few of them even requested, ‘Can I’ve the Ovi meal?’ It’s been wonderful.”

Kottler doesn’t wish to get forward of himself with the Capitals locked in a good Jap Convention finals sequence in opposition to the Tampa Bay Lightning, however he admitted he’s already imagined the potential for internet hosting the Stanley Cup at Mamma Lucia.

“Sidney Crosby went to a Tim Hortons in Canada in his native land and sat there all day with the Cup,” Kottler mentioned of the Pittsburgh Penguins superstar’s day with the Cup in 2016. “Ovi’s no longer going to do this, as a result of that’s no longer his persona, and he’ll most likely take it to Russia. I say, howdy, do no matter you need with it; simply win us a Cup, however I might adore it for an afternoon.”

Lord Stanley’s trophy may dangle a large number of Marsala mushroom sauce.

Extra at the Capitals:

After an uncharacteristic playoff efficiency, Braden Holtby takes inventory — and strikes on

Unburdened by way of earlier playoff luggage, Capitals’ younger gamers lend a hand raise the weight

Victor Hedman is ‘in all places the ice’ in Lightning’s Recreation three win over Capitals

Barry Svrluga: It’s too early to panic, however no longer too quickly to stick out of penalty field

Lightning goaltender Andrei Vasilevskiy settles in, is helping Tampa Bay get at the board

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