eat & drink
HO W WE REVIE W Restaurants are chosen for review at the sole discretion of the dining editor, based on input from our food writers and critics around the state. Our reviewers visit a restaurant at least twice, always maintaining anonymity to avoid preferential treatment. The reviewer brings up to three guests per visit and tastes everything
that is ordered. NJM reimburses the reviewer for all food and beverage expenses. After the final visit, the reviewer conducts a phone interview with the chef, owner or other
key members of the team. The review is then submitted to NJM and edited for clarity and fairness. Stars are assigned by the editor in consultation with the reviewer. As a
final step, an NJM sta;er checks the review for accuracy, always calling the restaurant to confirm all facts.
Excellent Fair Good Very Good Extraordinary P H
soaks up the mild sauce and flavorful
juices of carrots, purple cauliflower
and other vegetables.
Grilled chicken from Giannone, a
well-known Canadian producer, has
a complex, gamy flavor that blossoms
in the company of the dish’s Castelve-trano olives, yellow peppers, watermelon radishes and crunchy cubes of
toasted sourdough spritzed with brine
from pepperoncini peppers.
A few things fell short. A six-minute
egg did little to enhance an undercooked
local-asparagus appetizer blizzarded
with Parmesan. A similar egg added nothing to a moist and flavorful flat iron steak.
Servers seemed overextended on busy
nights; it took e;ort to get their attention
for water, silverware and the check.
Of greater concern was the absence of
any spectacular desserts. The simplest
was berries that DeChellis had picked
himself in nearby Pittstown and served
with vanilla-speckled whipped cream.
Even with those caveats, Juniper
Hill opens a promising new chapter in
a substantial career. For DeChellis and
his wife, the homecoming begins with
family—Jennifer’s father, Larry Wein-schenk, for example, stained and
sanded the dining room tables out of
wood from an old dairy barn, to stunning effect—and reaches outward.
“We’re not preaching to the community,” says DeChellis. “We want
the restaurant to integrate with
them.” The object, he says, “is to
make them smile.”
FOOD Italian seafood
AMBIENCE Boisterous in close quarters
SERVICE Friendly, but overburdened
DRINKS BYO (a local wine shop will deliver)
PRICES Raw bar, $1.50-$85; appetizers, $9.50-
$17.95; entrées, $20.95-$38.95; desserts, $6.95-
OPEN Dinner, Tuesday-Saturday; brunch, Saturday
& Sunday ;
F155 Third Street, 201-710-7727; tuttapescanj.com
By Jill P. Capuzzo
Mike Caracappa, who grew up in Manhattan’s Little Italy, became a fishmonger when
his father pulled him out of school at 16
to join the family business. Cara, as he’s
known, went on to run 22 seafood warehouses nationwide before selling them
to his partner in 2008. “I never owned a
restaurant, but I know fish and I know
good food,” says the 66-year-old.
The success of Tutta Pesca, his narrow,
three-story restaurant in Hoboken, testi-
fies to that. On the ground floor, there’s a
tiny fish market and kitchen and virtually
no waiting area. On the upper floors are
32 seats, as prized as they are closely
spaced. Caracappa bought the building
in 2014, renovated it and opened a year
ago. “The place gets packed,” he says. “I
tell them, ‘Don’t overbook; we don’t want
people standing out on the street.’” Lines
form there anyway, even on weeknights.
As you might expect, seafood domi-
nates the menu (with a beef and a chicken
dish daily). The grilled-octopus appetizer,
“an old family recipe,” says Caracappa,
involves tenderizing Spanish octopus for
three hours, dipping it in boiling water
until the tendrils curl, then sautéing it
and serving it over sautéed spinach and
cannellini beans with a balsamic-glaze
dressing. The dish is stupendously good.
Perfectly seared sea scallops in sa;ron-
infused scampi sauce are another delight-
ful starter. A bowl of plump, wild Maine
above: the dining room in the
crudo of wild
chilled lemongrass broth,
chili paste and
fish tacos with
avocado, pineapple, summer
slaw and lime.