Best Selling Italian Pasta Cookbooks

 
Daniel Bellino-Zwicke is still one of the Hottest Best Selling Authors of Italian Cookbooks.
 
Currently, 4 of Daniel’s Italian-Cookbooks are in the TOP 25 BEST SELLERS – PASTA on AMAZON #KINDLE
 
 
SUNDAY SAUCE  # 17 BEST SELLER PASTA   AMAZON.com
 
SEGRETO ITALIAN   # 22 BEST SELLER PASTA   AMAZON.com
 
The RAGU BOLOGNESE COOKBOOK  # 24 BEST SELLER PASTA  AMAZON.com
 
MANGIA ITALIAN  # 25  BEST SELLER PASTA   #AMAZON .com
BOOKS by BEST SELLING ITALIAN AMERICAN COOKBOOK AUTHOR
Daniel Bellino Zwicke
 
 
SUNDAY SAUCE has been a BEST SELLER in ITALIAN COOKBOOKS and PAST COOKBOOKS ever since it hit the shelves bacck in 2013. The book was The # 1 BEST SELLER – ITALIAN COOKBOOKS for the Most Amount of Time for the two years of 2013 – 2104 , beating out such notable Italian Cookbook Authors as Lidia Bastianch , Giada DeLaurentis, Marcella Hazan, and Mario Batali.
 
The main theme of Sunday Sauce is center around the greatest dish in all of Italian-Amaerica. The dish has been a Sunday ritual of millions of Italian immigrant families in America for more than 100 years. There are various versions of the dish that is made with a few different meats slowly simmering in a sauce of tomatoes seasoned with garlic and onions and the meats themselves which may include Sweet Italian Sausages, Meatballs, Braciole, Pork Neck, and Pork Spare Ribs of which Daniel loves to put in his.
 
There are recipes for Sunday Sauce aka Gravy from the movies Goodfellas and Francis Ford Coppola and Mario Puzo ‘s Godfather, where we see director Martin Scorsese ‘s father Charles Scorsese making Gravy (Sauce) in Prison with Ray Liotta, Frank Pelligrino Senior, and Mob Boss “Big Paulie Vario” played by Paul Sorvino.
On to The Godfather where we have the famous scene with Clemenza (Richard Castellano) showing Michael Corleone ( Al Pacino ) how to make Sauce (Gravy) for 20 Guys someday. Corleone Capo Pete Clemenza tells Michael you fry some onions and garlic in Olive Oil, put in Tomatoes, salt & pepper, a little wine, “you shove in your Meatballs and your Sausage. And that’s my trick.”
 
Sonny Corleone (James Caan) tells Clemenza, “Knock it Off. I got important things to do here.” The scene is part of Italian-American and movie folklore and people just love it. The reccipes are in Sunday Sauce, along with Dolly Sinatra ‘s Spaghetti & Meatballs, and Joe DiMaggio ‘s mothers Sunday Gravy as well.
 
Sunday Sauce is filled with wonderful stories of Italian-America, the ritual of the Sunday Gravy, of Pasta Nights, Meatball Parms, and most of all, friends and families sharing a meal together at the table, with good times, love and happiness. And in this day and age of families not talking to each other and getting together at the dinner table because the children can’t get off their phones or stop playing video games for hours on end, the message of Sunday Sauce bring people together for nice Italian meal at the table, the message is more important than ever, and Daniel teaches and inspires just how to do it yourself. To have a happy meaningful meal at the table with ones loved ones, its so simple and wonderful to do. Daniel will show you how. It’s all in Sunday Sauce – When Italian-Americans Cook a Best Selling Italian Cookbook by New York Italian-American Author Daniel Bellino Zwicke.
 
 
The RAGU BOLOGNESE COOKBOOK
 
As Daniel States in his book description, for years he kept his Famous Recipe for Ragu Bolognese a Secret. He has loved cooking Italian Food for many years, and is often asked what is his favorite thing to cook? The answer Meat Ragu and especially Bolognese Sauce aka Ragu Bolognese, of which The Journal of Italian Food Wine & Travel once wrote that Daniel’s was the Best in the country, and some say the World. Daniel says he especially loves to make his Bolognese Sauce because it is just so dam tasty, it’s economical, and it brings people together, the same as Daniel’s message in Sunday Sauce and all his wonderful Italian Cookbooks, is making wonderful Italian Food and bringing people together, sharing a meal at the table. Enjoying the food and Italian Wine, each others company, conversation, music by Frank Sinatra and Dean Martin, and good times that enrich your lives. Daniel does it quite well, and the Ragu Bolognese Cookbook is a Winner. And oh yes, we almost forgot. As Daniel states in the cookbook, he thought long and hard about publishing his famous recipe for Ragu Bolognese, but he did. He says, that if he charged the price of the book for the Bolognese Sauce Recipe  alone it would be a steal and more than worth it. But he didn’t although he could have as there are many avenues these days to do so, simply selling one great recipe on its own. But know Daniel didn’t do that. No he gives you his World Famous Recipe for Ragu Bolognese, and he gives you much more. 
 
Besides Daniel’s Secret Bolognese Sauce there are recipes for John’s Secret Chicken Cactiatore, Lasagna Bolognese, Spaghetti Meatballs, Marinara Sauce, and much more. Again, this book is a winner, and we just love it, especially Danny’s Bolognese.
 
SEGRETO ITALIANO 
 
We Love it too. Lots of Great Recipes and Stories from Daniel Bellino “Z”
 
 
MANGIA ITALIANO
 
MANGIA ITALIANO ! You Know What It Means? Yes! “EAT ITALIAN” !!! Everyone LOVES ITALIAN FOOD ! Right? Well Take This “MAGICAL JOURNEY” A Journey To The World of ITALIAN FOOD of “Mother Italy” and The ITALIAN-AMERICAN COMMUNITY. Take it with BEST SELLING Author Daniel Bellino Zwicke and his DELIGHTFUL STORIES of ITALIAN FOOD, of ITALY, and the Italian-American Culture in all its most Wonderful Glory, “THAT’S ITALIAN” MEMORIES in ITALIAN FOOD, RECIPES and more … “COME TAKE THIS WONDERFUL JOURNEY With US” Mangia Italiano, Memories of Italian Food is a decades long journey of Best Selling Italian Cookbook Author Daniel Bellino “Z” and his lifelong experiences and love of Italian Food from the beginning of being weaned on Pastina, the first Pasta in a long life of eating Maccheroni (Pasta) as the staple food of his Italian-American family’s diet. Moving on to Spaghetti & Meatballs, Daniel’s First Experience in eating White Truffles with Pasta, to dining out in local Italian Restaurants over the years, along with taking numerous cultural and culinary journeys to the Mother Country, Italy. The author traveled to: Rome, Venice, Tuscany, Napoli, The Amalfi Coast, Verona, Sicily, and the whole of the Italian peninsula and its many lovely islands. He ate, he learned, he lived the Italian Life in all its many splendors. In Mangia Italiano the author recalls all his many experiences with Italian Food over the yeas, both in New York and Italy. Mangia Italiano is filled with Daniel’s delightful stories of a his remarkable journey into all of Italy’s cherished Regional Cuisines, counting a multitude of ingredients turned into a variety of savory recipes. Among the mouthwatering dishes, are recipes for such items as: Sicilian Stuffed Artichokes, Mudica Steaks, Venetian Braised Duck, Italian Wedding Soup, Ragu Napoletana (Gravy), Umberto’s Shrimp Sauce for Pasta, Nonna Bellino’s Tomato Sauce, Pasta Rotta, Spaghetti Carbonara, Porchetta, Frank Sinatra’s Egg Sandwich, Amalfitana Lemon Cake, and more. Mangia Italiano will “Inspire” you to your similar Italian Experiences as well and is a book that’s sure to bring you much JOY all through the years. Read the stories, cook these fine dishes and enjoy a splendid life, Italian Style! Author’s Bio: DANIEL BELLINO ZWICKE is the Best Selling Author of: La Tavola, The Ragu Bolognese Cookbook, Grandma Bellino’s Cookbook, The Feast of The Seven Fish / ITALIAN CHRISTMAS, and SUNDAY SAUCE .. Daniel created BAR CICHETTI, America’s First Ever Venetian Wine Bar (Bacaro)., he lives and writes in New York’s Greenwich Village.
BEST SELLING BOOKS : SUNDAY SAUCE THE RAGU BOLOGNESE COOKBOOK GRANDMA BELLINO’S ITALIAN COOKBOOK The FEAST of The 7 FISH “ITALIAN CHRISTMAS” GOT ANY KAHLUA ? aka The Big Lebowski Cookbook MANGIA BENE TUTTI !!! 
 
BASTA !!!
 
 
 
 
MANGIA ITALIANO
 
 
POSITANO
 
COMING SOON !
 
TRAVEL GUIDE / COOKBOOK
 
Of  NAPLES POSITANO CAPRI
 
And The AMALFI COAST ITALY
 
Publication Release June 2019
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Where to Eat in POSITANO & NAPLES

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At BUCA di BACCO

Positano , Italy

Yes a Wonderful Ristorante Amazing View Great Food Excellent Service … This Hotel and Restaurant is a mainstay of the hugely popular town of Positano on the Amalfi Coast of Italy. Everything about the place is First Class, the hotel of course , the restaurant and a friendly professional staff of waiter, BBs, host, Chef, cooks, and all who work at this establishment. I’ve eaten here numerous times since 1985, and it’s always been a great experience including my latest trip this past May with my cousin Tony. We went for lunch, this was my cousin Tony’s first time, and he loved as I always have. I think I created a Monster when my cousin Tony said let’s get a bottle of Champagne and a suggested we might get a good quality Italian Sparkling Wine. A few days before we were at Lo Smeraldino Ristorante right on the water in Amalfi. I ordered the Ferrari “Perle” Brut 2007. It was wonderful and Tony was hooked, he loved it, and wanted to get it at almost every restaurant we went to for the rest of the trip. Now back to Buco di Bacco. Tony scanned the Wine List at Buco, he found the Ferrari “Perle” and ordered another bottle (Vintage 2010). We started drinking it and as with the 5 or so bottles of this wine we had on te trip, it was excellent and we thoroughly enjoyed. Now when it came to ordering, for Antipasto we got an order of Melanzane Parmigiano (Eggplant Parm) and some grilled vegetables. Now, though we both love eating Seafood when down on the Amalfi Coast, when we saw Meatballs (Polpette) on the menu, we both ordered some. I ordered a plate of Spaghetti Meatballs while Tony ordered just Meatballs minus any pasta.

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The BAR at BUCO Di BACCO

The service as usual was excellent, it was a absolutely gorgeous day in Positano and we were both a couple of Happy Campers outside on the lower Terrazzo of Buca Di Bacco. We both commented on how relaxing and peaceful it felt sitting there on the deck and we both sat back and thorughly enjoyed the whole experience and good fortune to having lunch there at such a nice restaurant in the beautiful town of Positano n the Amalfi Coast in Italy. Yes, we knew we were lucky and we were most certainly greatful to be sharing such a memorable meal together, two Italian-American cosuins in Italy in Positano, The Amalfi Coast. Basta !

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The WINE LIST

BUCA Di BACCO

Since 1916

POSITANO

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Buca Di Bacco

GRILLED CALAMARI & SALAD

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PESCE MISTI di Mare

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BUCO di BACCO

POSITANO  … I won’t give you the adress, as you can’t miss it. The Hotel and Ristorante BUCA di BACCO is front and center, right at the main beach in the center of town in Positano. If by some insane reason you have a problem finding it, just ask, it’s right down near the water.  telephone :  39 081 837 0723

PS … If you can Affor It? The Hotel is Wonderful.

Da VINCENZO

daVINCENZOooo

A Great View of POSITANO from a outdoor table at Da VINCENZO

That’s the terrazzo of Caffe Positano where all the people are stitting outside, which if you started going to Positano long ago, you may know that spot as the old BAR DeMARTINO, one of my favorite places ever in Positano, but sadly no longer there. Anyway, this is a spectacular spot to get an Apertivo, have lunch or dinner, and just enjoy the moment and the beauty before you, and just how “Lucky” you are to be in this Gorgeous Place, known as Positano. Enjoy!

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Italian Cookbook Author (Me)

Daniel Bellino Zwicke, Enjoying Lunch

at Da VINCENZO

Been Going there Since 1985

Positano

Yes, I started going to Da Vincenzo way back in 1985. Ever Since my first trip to the lovely little Seaside Town on The Amalfi Coast, that was yet to be discover by the masses all around the World. Yes, there were people who had heard about this gorgeous place, but not nearly as many as do now. Yes, Positano for the most part was still relatively un-known back then. That’s before Marisa Tomei and Robert Downey Jr. made the movie ONLY YOU that brought the town to the attention of so many more Millions of people then had ever even heard of the place before. Anyway Cei la Vie.

Now back to Rene Ricard and myself and how I discovered and went to Da Vincenzo way back in the Summer of 1985 (Bar DeMartino also). It was just a few days before my long awaited first trip to Italy, Spain, and the South of France when as I was walking down 2nd Avenue one night I ran into my friend Alma who was with the Poet RENE RICARD. We were all chatting on the street when I mentioned my trip. When I said I was going to Rome, Venice, and Positano, Rene got quite excited and told me the best places to go to in Rome, Venice and Positano. So besides all the info Rene gave me on Rome and Venice, he told me all about Positano and where to stay and where to eat which included going to Da Vincenzo where Rene told me I’d get the Best Plate of SPAGHETTI VONGOLE that Id’ ever have in my entire life.

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Positano-ORIGartBOOK

POSITANO

The AMALFI COAST

TRAVEL GUIDE

And RECIPES to POSITANO

NAPLES & The AMALFI COAST

ITALY

 

BookingsPOSITANO

Looking for a Room in Positano

Worldwide?

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DaVINCENZoPOLPOpeppers

GRILLED OCTOPUS & PEPPERS

Da VINCENZO

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La CAMBUSA

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La CAMBUSA

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View From a Table at La CAMBUSA

La CAMBUSA … Piazza A. Vespucci / Spiaggi Grande  POSITANO … tel # 39 089 812051

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Linguine Frutta di Mare , La CAMBUSA

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La CAMBUSA

PIAZZA A. VESPUCCI

POSITANO

La CAMBUSA

Out of most of the places we went in Positano this was easily best. They are so friendly and the food was perfect while overlooking the beach. Our first night they were about to close and stayed open for us to get a light bite and a great bottle of wine and we told them we would be back and they didn’t not disappoint. The seafood pasta was amazing and once again the staff was accommodating. I couldn’t recommend this place more. Enjoy Positano and really get to know the people because it’s a great place.

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Le PERGOLA

La CAMBUSA

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La CAMBUSA and The Piazza Amerigo Vespucci

POSITANO

BEST PLACES to GET PIZZA

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CHEZ BLACK

Chez Black may very well be the most popular restaurant in all of Positano. It’s been there Since 1949, and most travelers just love it. Besides having a full extensive menu of antipasti, past, Fish, Meat, and everything you’d expect to eat on the Amalfi Coast, they have a Pizza Oven and make some of the Best Pizza in town. The Pizza are Heart Shaped, and the ladies really like them, but you don’t have to be a lady to eat them. 

It’s almost impossible to miss CHEZ BLACK.  They are right down by the Center of Everything, at the main beach and just feet from the Ferry Boats Stop. Chez Black is one of the first things you’ll see as you depart from you boat ride and set foot on dry land in Positano. Enjoy!

PizzaPositanCOVO

COVO dei SARACENI

PIZZA at the BRASSERIEpoua

If you are going to Positano by boat, The Hotel Covo dei Saraceni it the very first thing you’ll see. This is Positano’s most popular hotel and a very good one at that, with great views from its rooms, restaurants and bars. And if you’re looking for PIZZA for Lunch or Dinner, The Brasserie at Covo dei Saraceni is a good option. Pizza run around 10 Euro each and are quite tasty. There’s a full bar and full menu, and a great central location from here to anywhere in the center of Positano. Enjoy!

For Info for Accommodations at COVO SARACENI .. CLICK

PIZZaCHezBLACKkkk

HEART SHAPED PIZZA

At CHEZ BLACK

POSITANO

Positano-ORIGartBOOK

POSITANO

TRAVEL GUIDE

COMING SOON

From BEST SELLING AUTHOR

Daniel Bellino Zwicke

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LATTERIA

“Alimentari”  … Via Pastea   , POSITANO

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LATTERRIA

“Some of The BEST FOOD in All of POSITANO”

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FRITTATA FORMAGIA ARANCINI PANINI MELANZANE SALUMI e FRUTTA

The Selection at “LATTERIA” is AMAZING

And You Can Take it out and Eat on Their Lovely Little Terrazzo

“I Did”

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The Terrazzo at “LATTERIA ALIMENTARI”

We just lucked out and stumbled into this place for sandwiches while we waited for check in time at our hotel. We took them down to the beach and ate them on benches. Several people came up and asked where we got them! They were delicious and SO reasonably priced. Fantastic!

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The GIRLS at Latteria Positano

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Eat out on The Terrace or Take Out to Your Hotel Room or Apartment

or for Your BEACH LUNCH

They’ve got everything you need : Water, Wine, Sandwiches, Fruit, Rice Balls, Cheese, Salami, Eggplant Parmigiano, Frittata, Olives, Sweets, evrything.

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Daily Specials at LATERIA POSITANO

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DELIKATESSAN

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Delikatessan

Yes another deli  (Salumeria). Beleive it or not, Salumerias / Rosticcerias have some of the best food in almost every city in Italy, and so is the case in Positano with Latteria Deli and here at Delikatessen. We decided to grab some food to take back some food to enjoy on our balcony. The food was of great quality and very reasonably priced. We bought some Pasta, Panini, and Eggplant, Arancini (Rice Balls) . Everyhtng was super tasty. They make greay Sandwiches (Panini) taht a great to take along with some Fruit and Arancini for an awesome Beach Lunch. If you are staying in Positano for a while and don’t want to eat out all the time then this is a great option. They have a great wine selection if you like to do as we do and keep a bottle or two back at our room , as well asfruit and  bottled water which you always need.

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In The KITCHEN at DELIKATESSEN

POSITANO

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Look at This Awesome Panino

Eggplant, Salami, Mozzarella, Peppers

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One of the Girls at DELICATESSEN

POSITANO

DEICATESSEN …. Via Mulini 5 , POSITANO

Da ALDOLFO

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Da ALDOLFO

RISTORANTE / BEACH

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The MENU at Da ALDOLFO

Reasonable Prices

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COZZE

MUSSELS at Da ALDOLFO

La TAGLIATA

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The FREE SHUTTLE to La TAGLIATA

And BACK

FIAT 500

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The View from LaTAGLIATA

POSITANO

La Tagliata is one of Positano’s most wonderful dining experiences. You have a wonderful lunch or dinner in a homey fun place, that serves you tasty food, with one of the most breathtaking views you’ve ever had at any restaurant, anywhere!  La Tagliata is a family run restaurant with Mamma cooking up fresh pasta and creating amazing antipasto tasty grilled meats. There’s no menu, you get what they make that day, and it’s quite a bit, so come hungry. 

La Tagliata was recommended first recommended to me by Lorenzo at my hotel Casa Albertina . Once you get there you a immediately greeted by the owner and his sons and other relatives are the servers which really provide a great family ambiance. The food was all prepared by “Mama” and wow you can really tell a lot of heart and love went into this food. By the end of the dinner my wife and I were beyond satisfied. A really great experience and amazing quality food! We Highly recommend it.

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The STEAK

La TAGLIATA

1st ANTIPASTO That Includes BRUSCHETTA

Then PASTA Then Their Famous STEAK

ALL The WINE YOU CAN DRINK

DESSERT & COFFEE

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MANGIA ITALIANO

MEMORIES of ITALIAN FOOD

Daniel Bellino “Z”

GREAT PIZZA & LOCAL CUISINE

Lo GUARRACINO

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Lo GUARACINOtisfy

If you’re looking for some of the Best Pizza in town, as well as good local cuisine at reasonable prices, Lo Guarracino is going to be one of your best bets in Positano. The place is old school and not so slick and influenced by tourists and many of the high prices you find in Positano these days. If you have a more modest budget, Lo Guarracino is on of the best places in town to satisfy your hunger and dining needs. Ite pizzeria/ restaurant is located on the Fornillo Beach side of Positano and is a short walk from the path that starts next to the Covo Saraceni Hotel. The make great Pizzas, Calzone, antipasti, pasta, and seafood dishes. The location is good, and the views are quite nice too. This place is a favorite of many, as it is with us. Try it.

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A Heart Shaped Pizza

And a Great View at Lo GUARRACINO

EATING FURTHER AFIELD

AMALFI NAPOLI SORRENTO CETERA

SOPHIAlorenFISHesss

Sophia Loren

SCANDAL in SORRENTO

In AMALFI

 

BookinggCOM

Looking for a Hotel

Amalfi – Positano – Sorrento

 

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PANSA

PASTICCERIA PANSA

An Absolute MUST DO in AMALFI

Two of the most popular things to do when in the town of Amalfi, are visiting its beautiful Cathedral. After you do this, the other popular thing to do in Amalfi is to go to the historical old Pasticceria Andrea Pansa in the main piazza right next to the church. An absolute must, you must have the amazing local pastry, a Sfogliatelle which is a crunchy lemon cream flavored pastry that was invented by nuns at a convent in the next town, Conca dei Marini. This pastry is the most famous one in the entire region, especially in Naples. There are a couple thousand placesin Naples, Sorrento, and all over the coast to get one, but Pansa is our favorite of all. You can get one to go, or eat it at a table either inside or outside this beautiful cafe. You might want to get an espresso or Cappuccino to go along with your scrumptious Sfogliatelle, so sit back, relax, and enjoy one of the great taste treats of your life, you’re at Andrea Pansa, one of the best pastry shops in all of Italy. Take advantage of it.

AmalfiTavernaAPOSTOLI

TAVERNA APOSTOLI

One of The BEST RESTAURANTS

On The Whole AMALFI COAST

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TAVERNA APOSTOLI

RISTORNATE / WINE BAR

AMALFI

PizzaSalameMARINO

AWESOME PIZZA !!!

Da MARINO RISTORANTE / PIZZERIA

My FAVORITE RESTAURANT in NAPOLI

Read The ARTICLE

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Da FRANCO

SORRENTO

Some of The BEST PIZZA in TOWN

ANTIPASTO & PASTA TOO !

SophiaSORRRENToSCANDAL

Sophia Loren

Vittorio De Sica

SCANDAL in SORRENTO

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Who is Anthony Bourdain s BigFoot

 
 
WHO Is BIGFOOT ?
 
In ANTHONY BOURDAIN’S
 
KITCHEN CONFIDENTIAL
Anthony Borudain


Kitchen Confidential
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BIGFOOT
 
 

BIG FOOT

A question most asked by restauarant professionals in New York who love Tony Bourdain and his minor-masterpiece Kitchen Confidential on the underbelly of the New York Restaurant World and the restaurant scene in general. Yes, you read Anthony Boudain’s New York Times Best Seller and what launched Tony into fame as the Star of such shows as : A COOKS TOUR,  NO RESERVATIONS, The LAYOVER, and PARTS UNKNOWN on CNN.
 In KITCHEN CONFIDENTIAL Tony talks wth adulation of his former boss whome Tony called  BigFoot . Tony expounds on Big Foot’s unconventional managerial skills in the restaurant business in New York and the many things he learned from him. Bourdain never mentions the guys name, so it has been the source of major intrigue to all who have read Anthony Bourdains entertaining book.
 
 
So you ask, who the Hell is He? Who is BIG FOOT ?
 
Answer : ANDY MENSCHEL is Tony Bourdain’s BIG FOOT
 
 
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GOT ANY KAHLUA ?
 
THE BIG LEBOWSKI COOKBOOK
by Daniel Zwicke
ABIDE !!!
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Carbone and Remembering Roccos an Old School Italian Red Sauce Joint

 

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CARBONE
Over The Old ROCCO RESTAURANT SIGN
GREENWICH VILLAGE NEW YORK
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The Old ROCCO RESTAURANT
Now CARBONE
Thompson Street
Noel, Barbara, and Danny Eat Out
At the Favorite OLD-SCHOOL ITALIAN RED SAUCE JOINT
Barabra gives her Review of ROCCO’S
She just Loved it.

 

ROCCO RESTAURANT SIGN
When ROCCO’S was ROCCO’S
SUNDAY SAUCE
Learn How to Make All
The GREAY OLD SCHOOL ITALIAN DISHES
Once Served at ROCCO’S and Many Old Joints Like It
MANY, Like RCOO’S are Now Sadly Gone
BAKED CLAMS
CHICKEN PARM
SPAGHETTI MEATBALLS
SUNDAY SAUCE
BRACIOLE

 

Steves Sizzling Steaks

 

StevesSizzlingSTEAK

STEVE’S SIZZLING STEAKS

Carlstadtdt , New Jersey

Circa 1963

“My Dad started bringingme to STEVE’S way back in 1962”

Yes my Dad who was good friends with the owner Steve Venturini started taking me here as a young boy. He’d get me a Cheeseburger and a Mug of Rootbeer and I’d just eat it up, sitting at the bar, I was in 7th Heaven. Dad always gave me Quarters to drop in the Jukebox to play some great 60s Tunes, like locals, Frankie Valli & The Four Seasons, Sinatra, and The Shirelles, who were all artistes from Jersey. I’d also have quarters to play te shuffle board Bowling gane that used to be in the corner. When I got older I’d go there with my buddys to get a nice Sizzling Steak, which are the best in Jersey. Love this place.

 

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STEVE’S

Since 1936

 

 

STEVE

STEVE

 

Steve was a larger-than-life figure. Many came in as much for the food and drink as to see Steve who survived not one, but two airplane crashes. On February 5, 1952, Steve was on a National Airlines flight that had just taken off from Newark Airport headed for Miami where he was going to spend the week fishing. The plane crashed in Elizabeth killing 30. Although injured, Steve survived. He carried his friend, Charles Griffin, to safety and returned into the tangled remains of the airliner to help others. It took an explosion and severe head injury to stop him. Ironically, a few years later, Steve was in a prop plane headed to Cuba where he was to go fishing with Ernest Hemingway, and that plane went down. He survived yet again.

 

 

StevesBAR

The BAR

Where I had many Cheeseburgers and Root Beer with Dad

 

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Took My Brother Jimmy for a Birthday Steak Dinner

“HAPPY BIRTHDAY JIMBO”

STEVE’S SIZZLING STEAK

April 2018

 

 

StevesSTEAKkk

 

STEAK and POTATOES

At STEVE’S

 

BadAssCOOKBOOK

Learn How

To COOK The Perfecct STEAK

RECIPE The BADASS COOKBOOK

 

 

Chicken Savoy Recipe

 

 

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The BELMONT TAVERN

Home  of CHICKEN SAVOY

 

Nearly every luminary with a photo on the Belmont Tavern’s walls—”98 percent,” resident raconteur Jimmy Cuomo will tell you—has actually eaten at the Belmont Tavern.

Step in off Belleville, New Jersey’s busy Bloomfield Avenue, do a spin, and you’ll meet them all, loosely grouped on the wood-paneled walls in plain black frames. Legendary songstress Connie Francis, a local girl. Jocks, like former Giants running back Tiki Barber and Knicks legend Ernie Grunfeld. Hollywood wise guys like Joe Piscopo and Frank Vincent. Clint Eastwood, who directed the film adaptation of the Jersey Boys jukebox musical set in the neighborhood, is a fan; he was in for a meal in 2013, popping hot peppers like they were jelly beans. Frankie Valli, the OG Jersey Boy, is one, too.

There are two begrudging exceptions to Cuomo’s 98 percent: Joe Torre, since the skipper’s son eats there, and Pope John Paul II. Cuomo has actually lobbied to revoke His Holiness’ dinner dispensation (“The Pope can come down!”), but his waitresses won’t let him.

The Belmont, which has been in Cuomo’s family for decades, has long had a knack for luring in a certain class of notable, especially those with Jersey roots. Spend enough time at the bar, nursing a longneck and staring at the Deer Hunter American flag obscuring the marbled mirror backsplash, and you’ll hear Cuomo, holding court in his Belmont polo, slip into stories, yarns thick with surnames like Pesci, Roselli, and  Gandolfini.

 

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Stretch with The “YANKEE CLIPPER”

JOLTIN JOE DiMAGGIO

 

But celebrity customers are just one part of the Belmont’s repute. A far greater part is evidenced by a sign visible from the sidewalk: Stretch’s Chicken Savoy. There are plenty of dishes available on the Italian-American menu, but this is the one people come for, from near and far. It’s a simple dish: Cut-up chicken rubbed down with a fat handful of garlic, hard cheese, and herbs, then roasted in a screaming-hot oven and splashed with vinegar, which sends aromas of schmaltz and spice right up to your nose.

It’s now a dish found all over—but only in—northern New Jersey, and as with most hyper-regional foods, its devotees are as idiosyncratic as its birthplace.

The Belmont Tavern is actually two distinct businesses, working together on the strength of what locals whimsically refer to as a “Belleville contract”—a handshake. Cuomo’s family took over the tavern portion of the operation, separate from the dining room, in 1965. Two years later, his father and uncle brought in Charles “Stretch” Verdicchio, a butcher-turned-chef with a nice touch on the line, a head of hair like Dean Martin and a knack for making friends.

Two of the largest photos on display at the Belmont feature Stretch. In one, he’s proudly hoisting up a lobster with claws the size of Pomeranians. The other is him mugging for the camera, a bit of balled-up linen clasped in his hands, next to none other than Joe DiMaggio. (“Stretch—never did find out what was under the napkin,” reads a scribble from the Yankee Clipper.)

Despite his seemingly high profile, nailing down solid information on Stretch is about as easy as nailing down solid information on D.B. Cooper. Even people who knew him, like Cuomo, or his son-in-law Norb Wroblewski, speak about Stretch in vague terms. He learned the trade from his dad and cooked out around the Hoover Dam as part of a New Deal job placement—they think. Back when the Belmont was big on live music, he’d pop out of the kitchen and sing a tune or two with the performers, they say. Neither seems exactly sure of where his nickname came from. (Best we could muster: He was lanky.)

And yet Stretch, who passed away in 1989, is still a big part of the Belmont’s personality, with enough name recognition to tout his best-known dish in the window out front. Over the years, it’s helped the restaurant back away from its unflattering reputation as a gruff goodfellas hangout and refocus its marketing. “Our perception now is not that it’s a wise guy joint,” says Wroblewski, not the only Belmont associate to swiftly shift subjects when Sopranos-style chatter arises. “It’s that it’s a good place to eat.”

Like at many places up here, the staff still seems to maintain a bit of a wink-and-nod relationship with the mob mentality. 

“It’s not an unusual dish,” says Wroblewski, a former accountant and Army Reserve pilot married to Annette. “It’s not difficult to make. We just don’t tell anyone how we do it.”

 

 

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CHICKEN SAVOY

 

 

INGREDIENTS

 

1 Chicken (about 3 lbs.)  cut in 8 pieces

Kosher salt and pepepr

4 cloves garlic – minced

1 tbsp dried oregano

1 tsp dried thyme

1/3 cup grated romano cheese

3 tbsp olive oil

1 cup red wine vinegar

 

PREPARATION

 

Salt and pepper chicken pieces and saute in 1 tbsp oil in a large oven proof skillet till skin is golden brown. Using a mortar and pestle or a small food processor make a paste of the next 5 ingredients and spread evenly over the skin of the chicken. Transfer skillet to a 500 degree oven and bake 20-30- minutes until done. Remove from oven – pour off the fat and add 1 cup of red wine vinegar to the pan. Spoon sauce over the chicken. Serve chicken with the vinegar sauce.

 

 

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Hangin at The BELMONT TAVERN

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In recent years, Wroblewski, along with his Ecuadorian-born chef Leo Lukar, has overseen the kitchen at the Belmont—”a little Polish kid that’s cooking Italian,” as he puts it. This has involved plenty of Chicken Savoy preparation. And he’s right that it’s simple, at least from an observer’s standpoint. Pieces of bone-in dark meat chicken relax in rectangular pans, dusted in an unassuming blend of cheese, herbs, and spices. The bird slides into a hot oven, where the skin roasts to a swoon-inducing crisp. It bakes a little longer than you’d think.

At some point after the pans are pulled, they get doused down with a generous squeeze of red wine vinegar, which sizzles and caramelizes and clings to the meat like a second skin. Fans will tell you this is the key ingredient. “It’s the vinegar that just romances you,” says Ron Silver, a Chicken Savoy enthusiast who visits the Belmont (and its many competitors) specifically for the dish.

If there are other steps to the recipe, the Belmont isn’t tipping its hand. The bewitching result: a juicy, garlicky, giddy, tangy paesano adobo that doesn’t need any condiments or accompaniments to outshine everything else splayed out across the red-and-white checkered tablecloths. It’s easily the most-ordered plate at the Belmont, so much so that Wroblewski begins baking orders well before dinner customers even begin showing up. He knows it’s going to go, and it always does.

Savoy, which has been on the menu since Stretch’s first days at the Belmont, has cultivated some serious local notoriety over the decades—partly because it’s good, partly because it’s popular, and partly because it seems simple enough for anyone to snag and stick on their menu. True success isn’t that easy, but that hasn’t stopped people from trying.

 

 

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