14 Sylvan Avenue
Englewood Cliffs, NJ
Fax: (201) 302-9532
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Bergen Record -- January 7, 2000 -- Click Here for Review
Bergen Record -- February 3, 1997 -- Click Here for Review
Zagat Survey -- 2000-2001 -- Click Here for Review
Zagat Survey -- 1998-1999 -- Click Here for Review
Star Ledger -- 'Sopranos' -- Click Here for Review
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Rated "3 Stars" by The Bergen Record
January 7, 2000
Rated "3 1/2 Forks" by The Bergen Record
February 3, 1997
This is a pretty, charming spot where white linen dresses the tables, starched peach-color napkins match the sponge-painted walls, and the lunch hour attracts a smartly attired crowd.
On a recent afternoon, sunlight poured in through an abundance of windows at the Englewood Cliffs restaurant. The dining area is divided by a center hall, allowing smokers and nonsmokers their separate pleasures, and pleasant waterscapes adorn the walls. The menu offers a generous selection of appetizers, salads, and entrees, but my lunch companion and I picked specials from the printed insert. Each came with soup or salad.
Before we ordered, our waiter brought a gratis plate of bruschetta, rounds of garlic toast topped with chopped tomato and red onion.
I chose the grilled shrimp, my companion, the fish a la Riviera. He selected scrod but could have had halibut. My salad was a mixture of red-leaf lettuce with red cabbage, dressed with olive oil and balsamic vinegar. My companion's vegetable soup was light and pleasant, if not memorable.
My shrimp, four of them, came perched atop individual rounds of garlic toast, which rested on a bed of cold cannellini beans and red onion, the large, white plates dusted with parsley confetti. My friend's scrod was bathed in a lovely, tangy sauce flavored with sun-dried tomato, mushrooms, and black olives. Slices of potato, onion-wrapped and browned, accompanied it.
Our desserts - a creamy square of not-too-sweet tiramisu and a slice of custard-and-cream-filled raspberry-topped spongecake - served with espresso were a lovely ending to a lovely rneal."
"Personal attention" from proprietor Jimmy Lulani ("he cares, he cooks, he loves you") and his "friendly" staff keeps this Englewood Cliffs Italian hopping, particularly on Saturday nights when diners jam the "attractive" residence that was once the summer home of former NYC Mayor Jimmy Walker; P.S. the early bird is "a great buy."
"Among The Best In New Jersey"
"If you haven't dined out lately, or if you've been looking for a place with a unique atmosphere to take someone special, then you owe it to yourself to visit Cafe Italiano Ristorante, located in Englewood Cliffs at 14 Sylvan Avenue, phone 461-5041, one mile north of GW Bridge.
|THE FANDOLFINIS, an intense group of "Sopranos" united in their appreciation of star James Gandolfini, held a conclave at Cafe Italiano in Englewood Cliffs on Saturday night. The gathering was the fourth since the HBO show's debut and easily the largest, drawing aficionados from as far away as Delaware and North Carolina. The six-course Italian feast was so rich this writer feared he'd have to be wheeled out of the joint on a dolly.
Among the topics of discussion: whether the show had slipped in quality since season one (some felt it wasn't as good, others thought it was just different); whether the meandering, surreal season two finale was satisfying (a split decision), and which episode was the best overall (in an informal poll taken by this writer, the season two episode about sin and mortality, written by actor Michael Imperioli, slightly edged "College" from season one).
It was a fun evening. Cathy DeMeo, who works for the state arts council in Connecticut, told of a fellow fan who went through serious eye surgery and had to hold his head down during the healing process; he arranged to have a TV monitor fixed so that it faced upward, thus ensuring that he wouldn't miss the latest installment. Veronica Scurti of North Carolina presented attendees with homemade T-shirts and bumper stickers advertising "Soprano Waste Management." The slogan: "Garbage is our Bread & Butter."
CHRIS FAYTOK/THE STAR-LEDGER
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