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Favorite Italian Restaurant in Bergen County

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So what's your favorite? Have more than one? Great.

I like Savini's (Allendale). I also like Granita Grill, a BYO (Westwood), and Baci (also in Westwood). I haven't been there in a long time, but I used like Cafe Italiano (Englewood Cliffs).

I've been very much wanting to try Trovato's (the original location in Elmwood Park).

So what are your favorites? Thanks in advance.

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  1. Our favorite is Arturos Midland Park.
    Always a great , never rushed, delicious experience.

    1. terrific subject. i've lived in bergen county for 30 years and there are so many ordinary italian restaurants it's incredible. how people rave about sanducci's or il mulino is beyond me. sanducci's is a step below ordinary and i eat at il mulino often, because it is close to where i live and it is ok. but i would never recommend it. the last time i ate at arturo's it was a byob. it was very good, a bit pricey, but i got sooo tired of the upsell. always pushing extras, it became a nuisance. i really like dipalma brothers but it's a trek for me. about 2 months ago i tried trovato's on rt. 46. really good. i've been back twice. i wish it was a byob, the wine list is limited, but the mixed drinks look great and we were treated well even though we weren't regulars. and there are alot of those. i had high hopes for bv tuscany, it's pretty good, the tripe appetizer was really good, but again, just ok. suppose that's better than bad. we wanted to love nicole's. young couple trying. service was terrible, some food was very good, some was ok.. tried it again, same results. i hate chicken off the bone. boring. chicken scarpiello with white meat chicken, no bone? i asked for it on the bone but they don't have any chicken off the bone. not for me. same request at trovato's, no problem. delicious. so everyone, what do you like? and if you say sanducci's, please, just don't.

      1 Reply
      1. re: dock

        Thanks for the comments. Are you talking about Di Palma Brothers in N. Bergen?

        Glad to hear even more positive comments on Trovato's -- I've heard plenty of them.

        Where is Nicole's? BV Tuscany in Teaneck? I've had a couple of people tell me it's excellent, and many tell me "eh" to "so-so" and a few "it's good, very good" comments. Haven't been there yet. Thanks again.

      2. I'm not a huge fan of the typical Italian-American food that you generally find around here, but for those classics you could do a lot worse than Nanni in Rochelle Park.

        3 Replies
        1. re: tommy

          Thanks. Just curious -- have you been recently? I know several people who like it very much. I've never had a great meal there, and I've never had a horrible meal there. I would say most were "OK" to "not bad" I would guess. I like the environment, atmosphere, ambiance, etc. The service was always good. Maybe that compensated.

          For whatever reason, I just don't get enthusiastic about the place. I've gone many times and just never really got to truly like the place to the point where I really look forward to going back.

          It certainly is time for me to try again -- which is part of the reason why I wanted to ask if you've been there recently. Anything new? Changes? Thanks again.

          1. re: ELA

            Been there recently. A "great" "chicken parm" and "mussels"? I've never had that either. It is what it is, and it's a pleasant dining experience, and I don't plan my month around it. I go to Italy and NYC for great meals. For a Tuesday, you could do worse. And most people do.

        2. I'm so tired of Italian food, i could spit. How many more Italian restaurants can open? I watch 'foodie' shows from Italy, and I think...why can't that happen here? So simple, and fresh. Seafood and vegetables. *sigh* But when I do eat Italian in BC, it's at Il Cafone in Lyndhurst, or Risotto House in Rutherford.

          2 Replies
          1. re: phDuh

            All our favorites are BYOB - Paisano's in Rutherford Aldos in Wyckoff and La Famiglia in Bogota.

            1. re: NJfoodLover

              ill agree with both Arturo's in midland park and Paisano's in rutherford.

              ill add: Buon Gusto in closter,& Rocca in glen rock - il villagio on 17 in carlstadt was great but havent been there in years.

          2. hi ela. yes, dipalma bros. in no. bergen. decent red sauce place. nicole's is in bogota, i believe. you really root for them to succeed but there are so many little problems. first time i ordered chicken scarpariello and my wife had the pork chop with hot peppers. exact same sauce. exact. the wait staff was mostly high school kids who were overwhelmed. there was 1 good server and i found out from the hostess, the owner's motherinlaw that night, it's usually the owners wife, the server was the owners sister. how can you not root for them. but i just don't see it happening. btw, the second visit, the seafood risotto was outstanding.
            i went to nanni's once about 10 years ago. i remember the food was good but it felt a little stuffy. too retro. and the cliente that night was ancient. i was in my 40's then and i was the youngest person there. valet parking and i remember waiting for my car with an older couple. my car came first and when i cranked up some eminem on the cd player they didn't look too happy.
            and to the person who felt la familglia was their favorite italian restaurant, really? your favorite? so if the pasta was $18 instead of $10 you would still say it's your favorite. the place serves too many people and the food is as ordinary as possible. not bad, but certainly not good. and the over/under on crying babies is usually 2 1/2. go with the over.

            1 Reply
            1. Italian-American in NJ? Scores of places, 99% of which are no better or more interesting than a slice of pizza.

              I do like La Sicilia in Belleville, (just outside of Bergen) a place that seems to be in that other 1% for me. It starts with the unusual and great Palermo slice, a square-sliced pie that is quite different from the norm. Soups are 100% made from scratch and the homemade pasta is very good. Worth an excursion, for sure.

              The communal tables are also an interesting and different experience, and fun.

              http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DKH6Cu...

              1. Is Jerry's in E. Rutherford still around? Haven't been there in several years, but I remember it was good.

                1 Reply
                1. re: ELA

                  jerry's hasn't changed in 50 years, including the waitresses. and the patrons. and the carpeting and wallpaper. the food is still good but nothing to go out of the way for. the atmosphere is though. when someone asks for a classic nj experience, this place or the belmont tavern are it.

                2. Sicilian Sun in Hohokus has been around forever....and it is still very, very good.

                  1. I have always found Amarone in Teaneck very consistent. Not mind blowing, but very satisfying. I have tried a few different times to reserve for Fontana di Trevi but was told they were booked. Has anybody been??

                    1 Reply
                    1. Went to Granita Grille last night for the first time. We all loved it! The food was very good but what made it special was the guitar playing background music and the guy did a wonderful job singing
                      familiar favorites. I was so taken aback when I went to give him a tip and learned that he is blind, has been blind since birth - and has been playing at this restaurant for about 15 years! It was a great night enjoyed by all of us. You must have their bread - pizza and Italian. Pasta in garlic and oil (I realize it is a simple preparation - but -) not always this delicious!