Luke Palladino- SJ Shore Restaurant Review
PLAZA 9 SHOPPING CENTER-1333 NEW ROAD, NORTHFIELD, NEW JERSEY- TEL: 609.646.8189
The other night my cousin, Bill,and his wife, Megan, took us out to dinner at a new(ish) restaurant in Northfield (offshore from Atlantic City/Margate area) called Luke Palladino. We had heard such great things about this place (from Bill/Meg, our other cousin Mike and his wife Kim, and our parents and their friends) and we could not wait to try it out for ourselves! When Bill asked us to go, he said he knew that we both would just love it it…FOODIE HEAVEN. haha. When we got to dinner they gave us this card/trivia game they had got on their honey moon for us…
pretty fitting right? haha…. They saw it in one of the gift shops of a wine tour they did in Napa Valley, CA. Here is Megan and our cousin Bill:
Luke Palladino’s Italian cooking is a culmination of his experiences working throughout Italy. His restaurant features regional cuisine with influences from all over Italy. Just as in Italy, the restaurant follows the season and their menu is based on what is at its peak and they use only prime ingredients. Luke Palladino also strives to use local, organic and sustainable Ingredients.
About the Owner/Chef:
- In 1989, Luke Palladino was voted “most likely to succeed” by his classmates at the Culinary Institute of America
- From 1997 to mid-1998, Palladino was executive chef and partner at Venice’s internationally celebrated Ristorante al Covo. Prior to his time at al Covo, Palladino immersed himself in the culture of Italy’s varied regions, spending time at restaurants in various regions, including Rome, Piemonte, Puglia, Friuli, Sicily and Tuscany.
- In the United States, Palladino has worked with some of the country’s most wellrespected chefs, including Paul Bertolli, Jeremiah Towers, Emeril Lagasse and Todd English.
- In 2003, he opened three restaurants simultaneously located inside the Borgata Hotel Casino & Spa in Atlantic City. Specchio, Ombra and Risi Bisi. Specchio presented refined Italian dishes that showcased his artistry; Ombra presented the simpler rustic flavors of the Italian countryside. At Risi Bisi, he replicated the style of Italian street food, such as paninis and pizzas.
- In 2006, Luke partnered with the Isle of Capri to open Bragozzo in Biloxi, Mississippi and in 2007, opened Bragozzo in Pompano Beach, Florida.
We started with three appetizers to share:
(1) Zucchini Blossoms with Squash, Ricotta: Heaven in your mouth. This was one of the daily specials and IT.WAS.DELICIOUS.
(2) Breadsticks Brushed with White Truffle Butter, Grated Parmigiano and Wrapped in Prosciutto: we both are not HUGE fans of prosciutto but these were actually very good! and the presentation was so cool!
yeah you eat that breadstick, Megan!
(3) Spaghetti with Soft Shell Crabs: so great. the sauce that the crabs/spaghetti was bursting with flavor…delicious! Chile peppers made this dish slightly spicy…which is always great! This was the first time we have ever had soft shell crabs- loved how simple they were to eat.
and for our entrees….
Mary and Megan both ordered the Whole Roasted Fish: Red Snapper “Crazy Water” with Ligurian Olives, Grape Tomatoes, Calabrese Chilies, Garlic, Celery, Parsley and Marjoram
Christina ordered Daily Fish: White Tuna with Peperonata Sauce with Spring Pea, Ligurian Olive and Potato Ragu:
….easily one of the best tuna I (Christina) have ever had. except when Bill catches Tuna and gives us some
Bill ordered the GRILLED RIBEYE CAP “BRACIOLE”: Stuffed with Garlic, Parsley and Pecorino Cheese Served with Crisp fingerling potatoes with Spring Garlic and NJ Swiss Chard
we also ordered some sides to share:
POLENTA WITH PARMIGIANO
GRIDDLED NJ ASPARAGUS WITH LEMON
and for dessert…
Megan ordered the VALRHONA CHOCOLATE RUM CAKE: Valrhona chocolate frosting, Crème fraiche whipped cream
Bill ordered AFFOGATO: Vanilla Gelato Smothered in Frozen Limoncello, Hot Espresso and Amaretti Cookie-Whipped Cream
and we both ordered the vanilla and honey/rosemary gelato—but forgot to take a photo!! sorry!
We had SO much fun with Bill and Meg! We talked/laughed for so long with each other– they practically had to kick us out by the end haha. Overall- we give this restaurant an 8.5/10… reasons? (1) they were out of a few things that they offered on the menu (2) while the waiter was very knowledgeable about the menu- he was not especially friendly. NOT HUGE deals– but hey…it takes perfection to get a 10/10!
Mary took Todd back to Luke Palladino for his birthday. Although she forgot to snap pictures of everything they ordered, we thought we would share a couple of additional items available on the menu:
MUSHROOM AND TALLEGIO CRESPELLE, Baked Tallegio Cheese and Wild Mushroom Stuffed Crepe, 15 Year Old Balsamico
ARANCINI, Crisp Risotto Fritters Filled with Truffled Sottocenere Cheese and Scallions