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Best Italian restaurants in NJ, 2018 version


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#1 Rail Paul

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Posted 11 January 2018 - 05:45 PM

NJ.com's Pete Genovese offers his version of the best Italian (American) restaurants, county by county.  It's a good list, with lots to debate.  2825 in Atlantic City, of course. He named it his favorite Italian last year.

 

In Essex, he likes LuNello, with Fascino and Divina.  No fight with that. I'd add Rezza and Sopra.

 

In Passaic, he likes Bottagra.  Like that choice.  I've been there a few times, and it has a lot going for it.  Very 1950s.  Liked Viaggio, as well.

 

In Morris, he likes Il Mondo Vecchio.  OK.

 

In Bergen, he likes Paisano and Justin's

 

 

http://www.nj.com/en...cart_river_home


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#2 E.L.A.

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Posted 02 April 2018 - 12:31 AM

Very nice list...in Bergen, while there might be a lot of Italian restaurants, I don' think there are a lot of good ones. Paisano's is very good, very popular. I like the variety, and the author speaks about the Northern and Southern Italian offerings. Justin's has a strong following, popular, etc. I think there are a few -- only a few others -- and my favorites are Savini, Dimora, and for old school, I like Rudy's (Cliffside Park). I haven't been in many years, but David's (also in Cliffside Park) used to be a hidden gem.

 

I like the picks in Essex County -- LuNello is excellent and no on is surprised to find it on anyone's short list. I very much like Fascino and Divina is very good, and popular.

 

In Hudson County, while I agree on Augustino's, and I can see Trattoria La Sorrentina on the list, I would also add one of my favorites, DiPalma. 

Thanks for posting Paul.



#3 E.L.A.

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Posted 18 June 2018 - 02:56 AM

Nothing new here...need to get to a few of these...soon!!! Maybe Paul will be in NJ soon and I can get him to make some plans with me, LOL.

 

Or, I am overdue to call Nick -- the man who will never retire, LOL -- and break bread with him.



#4 E.L.A.

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Posted 19 June 2018 - 03:06 PM

Anyone been to Justin's lately? What about Paisano's?

 

I've heard people call Paisano's "unique" -- and I get that. Call it what you like, but it's good, LOL. I haven't been there in a long time, but I did talk to the owner and the chef last time I was there -- and the owner used the word unique, and also said it was "alternative" Italian, which I thought was an interesting term. He said they offer selections from both Northern and Southern Italy, and the chef creates a personal flair on many of the dishes. 

 

Justin's opened a second location, right? Justin's Hawthorne location has been going strong for what, 10 years now? I've heard it described as "Northern Italian Cuisine" and they too have a strong, loyal following. A lot of people like this place.



#5 Daniel

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Posted 19 June 2018 - 03:10 PM

How is , Marie's Deli in Chatham? 


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#6 E.L.A.

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Posted 19 June 2018 - 03:54 PM

How is , Marie's Deli in Chatham? 

 

Was that the place on Diners, Drive-Ins and Dives', where Guy was long-time friends with the husband/wife owners? Known for a certain sandwich or two and their meatball?



#7 rozrapp

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Posted 19 June 2018 - 04:34 PM

How is , Marie's Deli in Chatham?

 
Was that the place on Diners, Drive-Ins and Dives', where Guy was long-time friends with the husband/wife owners? Known for a certain sandwich or two and their meatball?

Yes. The actual name is Marie’s Italian Specialties. I’ve seen that episode (been rebroadcast many times). We’ve never eaten there.

#8 E.L.A.

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Posted 19 June 2018 - 04:45 PM

 

 

How is , Marie's Deli in Chatham?

 
Was that the place on Diners, Drive-Ins and Dives', where Guy was long-time friends with the husband/wife owners? Known for a certain sandwich or two and their meatball?

Yes. The actual name is Marie’s Italian Specialties. I’ve seen that episode (been rebroadcast many times). We’ve never eaten there.

 

 

 

OK, thanks...so, since we are talking about the same place...yes, I've been there...and like others I went specifically because I saw it on DD&D's and it was in NJ. 

 

So, I went, I ate...and I did NOT like at all. We went, ordered appetizers, made sure to get the meatball, and a couple of entrees. First, neither owner was there. We asked. Second, the help was all young, high-school type help, and while I am all for internships, giving young people a chance, etc. -- they didn't do a very good job. 

 

The meatball -- and we ordered two -- was very salty. Extremely salty, to the point where I couldn't eat mine, and granted I am a bit overly sensitive to salt. My friend's was edible but still, very salty -- even she said so, and she's a salt-o-holic, LOL. I don't remember the other appetizers, but I remember we both agreed one was very "bland" and didn't have any flavor at all. For the entrees, we got a hot sandwich, which was so-so, and one of their "drunken" specials -- and that too was bland, so so at best. Overall I was not impressed. I'd have to be in the area to even consider trying it again, and also not have someone recommend another place to me. I wouldn't really want to try it again, unless people I knew and respected said it was very good, my visit was an anomaly, etc.

 

Another DD&D place I went to was the Vagabond in AC...and that place is excellent!!!



#9 Sneakeater

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Posted 19 June 2018 - 04:52 PM

Sorry.  Can't help myself.

 


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#10 E.L.A.

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Posted 19 June 2018 - 05:30 PM

It could have been an off-day, the exception not the norm, or whatever. I just know the day I went, the meal I had -- was not good.