This is my family's go-to restaurant. It is perfect in that it is byo, has very tasty, well-prepared food, and - most important - is owned by extremely nice and very hard-working people! We feel at home when we eat here. Our kids' regular dishes are known before we order, they are always pleasantly happy to alter dishes to accommodate our dieting needs (less sauce, no breading, subbing veggies for pasta or potato...). I can't say that they make THE most delicious Italian food I've ever eaten, but the food they make is fresh, well-prepared and very tasty! I debated giving 5 stars, and in a way would like to since I truly love eating here. However, since very expensive, over-the-top Italian restaurants exist in NYC and elsewhere in NJ, I feel it is more honest to leave off a star.
Don't come here expecting a beautiful establishment with expensive ambiance. This is a nice, clean, simple, family business that cooks from the heart and provides a warm and inviting meal.
We hosted our family's Shabbat dinner here the night before our daughter's Bat Mitzvah this past June. The food was terrific, the private area we used, separated from the small public area by a wall, was perfect for cousins, uncles and grandparents.
My only concern about this place is that often when we go, the restaurant is not very full. I worry that they may struggle in this economy and wish more people would eat there more often. This is why we go weekly - I want to do our part to help keep this gem of a family business open for as long as the owners enjoy running it!
Give it a try - you won't be sorry. (My usual dish is the Chicken Cardinale - a perfectly cooked, beautifully tart dish with just the right amount of capers and artichoke hearts. I just love it and it is difficult to force myself to try one of the specials occasionally just to keep from being too old and boring!)
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