Absolutly the finest Italian bread: "Calandra's Bakery", Newark and "Plaza Bakery" on Franklin Ave, Belleville.(We care-package the rolls and twists to craving Florida friends.) Bring a large MESH bag to let the steam escape so they'll cool naturally ( don't smother them in paper or plastic) and freeze whatever few you can resist eating in the car as soon as you can. Calandra's are usually hot and baked every hour. You can freeze and thaw the bread over and over and you can't kill the taste, but if you don't freeze them, they are mushy the next day.
It's said that Sinatra had neighborhood bread flown out to him.
The greatest Italian hot dogs, for about 50 years:" Dickey Dee's" on Bloomfield Ave, Newark (Calandra's Bakery is around de corner.) You might see Frankie Valle, Joe Pesci, or Frank Vincent there.
The best thin crust pizza I hesitate telling of because I don't want to have to wait in line behind youse, but since I'm on a diet again, it's "Town Pub" on Broad St, Bloomfield. Be the purist you know you are at heart and SKIP THE EXTRA TOPPINGS! Don't dilute the fantastic flavor. Just order large thin pies.We usually pretend that two pies are enough for three of us, and individually sneek back the next day. Sadly, the flavor doesn't hold up perfectly after cooling and reheating so it may not pay to take extra pies home to reheat. But I have called it the other cold Breakfast of Champions the next morning when I needed that unique flavor again. Town Pub redecorated and had foolishly changed their pizza also, causing such an uproar that, to everyone's relief, they went back to their original pie. I'm getting so hungry thinking about it.
A fairly new Ital. restaurant in Nutley that is a local favorite is Queen Margarita on Washington Ave. Reservations for dinner advised but normally a short line for lunch. The friendly owner is usually there making sure everyone is happy. Browny Chocolate Cookies at his next door bakery. Enormous apple turnovers. Restaurant is inexpensive, especially at lunch, yet the bakery seems a bit high. I may just be cheap.
You might think from these raves that I'm just an enthusiastic person and that I like everything. Ask my girlfriend and she'll set you straight about that!
These local food artists are really at the top of their game.
PLUS, ALL THIS IS AT N.J. PRICES!