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Jun 20, 2007 04:43 PM

Mossuto's Market, Wall NJ

On Route 35 S, in the same strip center as Perkins.

Mossuto's is an upscale version of an Italian Deli in a beautiful newish 2-story space with a relatively large selection of prepared food, deli meats and cheeses imported from Italy and a small butcher area with wet and dry-aged prime beef. They have a rather large and pleasant dining area in the front of the store that gets white linen and candles on Friday and Saturday nights along with a full menu of fine Italian fare.

I love going to Mossuto's for lunch because despite their menus, their attitude has always been "if we've got in the store, we make it for you any way you want it." For example, one of my favorite sandwiches is prosciutto di Parma and with a two or three strips of imported Italian dried provolone on semolina bread with plain olive oil. Every time I order this sandwich, the counterman goes in the retail cheese cooler, cuts open a retail pack of imported provolone and cuts me two or three slices of cheese from the wedge without a complaint! The bite on the inside of their semolina bread could be a little chewier, but other than that, I get a delicious sandwich exactly the way I want it, every time.

For Father's Day, my wife and kids took me out to lunch there (my choice of course). After perusing the coolers, I asked for a single eggplant rolatine and a custom cold anitpasto plate with three different items (marinated cracked Sicilian olives, white bean salad and a classic NJ antipasto (julienne of salami, ham and cheese in vinaigrette) made with sopressata, prociutto di parma, provolone and sliced boccancini with fresh basil and good olive oil)---and I got exactly what I wanted, with a smile! I also got a basket of semolina bread and a San Pellegrino Limonata to put me in Italian lunch heaven.

For the kids, they always have housemade meatballs and a lovely hand-breaded chicken cutlet that they will gladly cut into "chicken fingers." My wife wants a just a kitchen spoonful of chunky balsamic glazed boneless chicken with a mound of house-roasted red pepper on the side and nothing else--and she gets hers too, gently warmed up!

OK Mossuto's is not perfect, what restaurant is? The young waitress in the front have a somewhat chilly demeanor with non-regular customers. But, they are young and pretty and efficient, which makes the whole experience even more authentically Italian!

I have not been in for dinner yet, so I have no comment there. Go try it for it lunch. And pick up a #10-can of La Fede San Marzano (DOC) tomatoes on the way out to make a nice batch of gravy when you get home.

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  1. I passed this the other day and wanted to go in to buy some specialty items, but have not heard anything about the I did not go. Any recent reviews? I know you can eat there, too form what I see on Yelp.

    Thanks for any help!

    14 Replies
    1. re: Angelina

      I think I've posted about Mossuto's at least once before: (toward's the bottom).

      We like the pizza a great deal. The restaurant service can lack a little polish and they have reduced the craft beer selection, but we still go back for a pizza or two. The head pie maker is very, very good at working the wood fueled oven - fun to take a moment or two to watch.

      The bread they make there everyday is as good, and often better, than that made anywhere else in the area.* In fact, the baguette is my single favorite loaf in the Mon/OC. I will go there simply to pick up bread when it comes out of the ovens.

      The dry-aged steaks are another draw. They offer the usual array of Italian specialties, but I have only tried a couple of their prepared items. I am more than willing to pass Joe Leone's when I am shopping for such items, which is usually cured meats and cheeses. The fact that they have a retail liquor license adds a bit of convenience.

      * To the OP, they have changed the bread baker since your post. Do you still go? Have you noticed the change in quality?

      1. re: MGZ

        I am more than willing to pass Joe Leone's when I am shopping for such items, which is usually cured meats and cheeses

        Maybe I'm spoiled due to the number of quality Italian Markets/Delicatessens I have available to me in Northern New Jersey......but I never understood the love for Joe Leone's. I've been to the store and My brother used to use them to cater home parties. I did not find the bread, prepared foods or bakery items to be exceptional in any way.

        1. re: fourunder

          "[B}ut I never understood the love for Joe Leone's. . . . I did not find the bread, prepared foods or bakery items to exceptional in any way."

          Once again, sir, I find myself in complete accord with you.

      2. re: Angelina

        I live in Oceanport and when I'm entertaining and doing an antipasta, I will drive down there because there skinny long breadsticks are the best.

        1. re: MichelleM131

          YES! I looooooooove those breadsticks! I thought I had posted about Mossuto's after a friend who lives in the area took me there for the first time last year. In any case, I've been there only once since the expansion, but I think it's a great spot for lunch when I'm in the area and always stop in.

          Re: Joe Leone's, I have to disagree about certain items: they have THE. BEST. broccoli rabe I've ever had. I'm constantly on the hunt in NNJ for a place that makes it as well as they do, but continually strike out! I'm also a fan of their eggplant pie (even though I find it a tad too salty, it's wonderful!), the tomato 'petals,' and a sandwich from JL's while sitting on the boardwalk is a beautiful thing too, imo.

          1. re: Curlz

            My wife's family (1/2 Italian) LOVES Joe Leone's. I'm not as big a fan, but have to agree, they do the best rabe I've ever had....

            1. re: Curlz

              How is the broccoli rabe prepared that makes it stand out for you?.....garlic, sausage...or other?


              1. re: fourunder

                No sausage--just garlic. My comment is that they must be putting crack in there. NO clue what makes it so good!

                1. re: fourunder

                  For me it was the stuffed bread with broccoli rabe and provolone. And I mean stuffed - more like a pie..not too bready not too fresh with that bitter taste. firm but not mushy.

                  1. re: fourunder

                    I was recently at a "gathering" and tasted the broccoli rabe offered. It was okay, garlicky. clearly reheated, and kind of sweet. Later, we found out that it had come from Leone's. My guess, having sauteed a lot of green stuff over the years, is that they add sugar to mitigate the bitterness. Just me, maybe, but not really very good. Honestly, cooking broccoli rabe is so easy, I can't fathom the idea of buying it prepared and reheating it.

                    1. re: MGZ

                      Honestly, cooking broccoli rabe is so easy, I can't fathom the idea of buying it prepared and reheating it.

                      I'm more like you in this regard. I rarely buy for convenience....and I only purchase prepared foods if I cannot make it better myself.....the one exception is fried eggplant slices....I can't stand the time and effort to make it.

                      1. re: MGZ

                        Any guidance on cooking broccoli rabe at home would be appreciated. I've tried it a few times - can't get right

                        1. re: LAC06488

                          I saute it it in a pan w/ olive oil and lots of minced garlic...then I add a lot of salt to take away the bitterness....has worked for me for years!!

                          1. re: LAC06488

                            I start with a large skillet over medium heat. I add a couple tablespoons of olive oil and, sometimes, an additional fat - butter, bacon grease, or some rendered chicken fat. I add 3 or 4 cloves of sliced garlic (sometimes sliced onion as well - though the onion would be added to the pan for a minute or two before the garlic). Be careful not to let the garlic brown too much (ever watch Lidia? She always burns the garlic, drives me nuts). When the garlic has sufficiently perfumed the lipids, turn up the heat a bit and add the broccoli rabe (I usually cut the stalks in half after removing the very bottom of the stalk). Add some salt* and saute the greens, flipping with tongs, for a couple minutes. Place a lid over the pan for another minute or two until the stalks have reached the tenderness you desire.

                            Once plated, you can top the greens with some aged Balsamic or Parmigiano or both.

                2. Went there for the first time, yesterday, after reading the posts, here. The cafe and bar looked interesting, but I was there for the dried beef. It was outstanding, but at $19.99/lb., not cheap, either!

                  1. So I made it here for lunch yesterday! So glad I did!! Thank you all for your was well worth the trip. We ordered 2 pizzas...the was ok, the other one was way better..we had a pie with sweet sausage, procuitto, and homemade ricotta. Outstanding!! The crust on both was great..The one place I can compare it to is Motorino in Brooklyn. Red Brick oven burning wood.

                    A blogger who I follow was recently there. She has some great pics of the place, and her descriptions are much better than mine of the place! Check her out:


                    The service was good, too. The waitress told us how the meat and sausage were all made there, and we knew we had to order it then! They have a liquor license, so we ordered a nice bottle of cab, and for $ was superb! The name escapes me right now.

                    We ventured into the market after and thought how fresh everything looked! I would have bought some cheese, but we were going to walk on the boardwalk in Sping Lake after.

                    It was overall a pleasure! We were glad we went. The owner was there and he was very friendly. Definately worth it! I am looking forward to our next visit!!

                    After the boardwalk, we enjoyed some delish toasted coconut ice cream @ Hoffman's in Spring Lake!! What a perfect and sweet!!



                    6 Replies
                    1. re: Angelina

                      I'm glad you guys liked it. The restaurant hasn't attracted a lot of CH attention, but it seems to be generally thriving. In fact, when we first went there, I thought it was one of those places that deserves being mentioned but might get too busy too quick with buzz. Given that they seem to have ironed out some kinks on the front of the house issues, it seems they might be able to deal with the crowds better now.

                      The store/restaurant has morphed quite a bit over the past couple years. It can still be a tough balance at times. Honestly, I could see them continuing to reduce the store space - if not almost abandon it.

                      1. re: MGZ

                        Thanks MGZ. We went at an off time, so they were not busy and the service was great. It must get hot as heck in the back of the dinning area where that big window is on the ceiling....just my thoughts... I still will go back because the pizza was that good!

                        1. re: Angelina

                          Yeah, I was very disappointed when they got rid of the Ommegang and Dogfish 60 and 90 minute drafts and moved there beer selection to more of what would best be called a "Belmar bar summer selection" (one night my wife asked for three consecutive beers that they purported to have, but were "out of"). Nevertheless, we came to the same conclusion - "[We} still will go back because the pizza was that good!" (not to mention fun to watch).

                          Next time, though, do snag a baguette for "later" - they seem to come out of the oven around 11 and I dare you to drive home without tearing an end off! (I may regret having mentioned that someday when I go there at 1 to grab a loaf).

                          1. re: MGZ

                            Note that Mossuto's beer selection is now posted online:


                            1. re: ooi82much

                              Thanks. Yesterday's update will have me getting back there as soon as I can (at least when I can get there by 5:30 - until summer ends). Plus that website is great to know about!

                            2. re: MGZ

                              I love bagutettes..ever since being in France..I have to have them on a daily basis, so I am forever in Wegmans! Thanks for letting me know Mossuto's has them, MGZ!!

                      2. Been there for both lunch and dinner (party of 4). I wasn't thinking about doing a detailed review at the time so I don't remember the specifics of the food, so will just give a summary statement for both the lunch and dinner: Excellent! We did sample a variety of food among the four dinner diners and didn't miss with anything. I'll take notes on next visit for a better review.