By Kevin Canessa Jr.
NORTH ARLINGTON –
Some restaurants claim everything they make is from scratch. Eventually, you learn it’s not all really homemade. But the truth is, at Mama Angelo’s, everything served really is made from scratch — even the pasta — says owner Larry Angelo, a lifelong Kearny resident.
“Everything is fresh. Everything is made from scratch each day,” Angelo said. “I have a pasta maker, also, and we make sure the pasta is fresh each day too. Nothing frozen. Nothing processed. Nothing pre-cooked. Only the best ingredients.”
Angelo and hs family opened up the Italian-American restaurant in 2010. And ever since, he says he’s been thrilled to share his family’s love for cooking and food with the public.
“Every single recipe we have is a family recipe,” Angelo said. “They’re all from my mom, my dad and others in the family.”
At Mama Angelo’s, Larry says customers should expect big portions at moderate prices. And, he says they should expect to be treated as if they were guests at his family’s home.
“If you’re looking for a quick five-minute experience, like to grab a sandwich and run, you won’t get that here,” he said. “We want everyone to feel like they’re a guest at our home. It’s all about the family atmosphere here.”
Angelo and his family take the commitment to providing a family atmosphere so seriously that every single dish served must first pass a quality check by him or a member of the Angelo clan.
“It’s not leaving the kitchen unless I check it first or my mom, or dad — someone in the family,” he said. “We want to be certain everything we serve is as it should be. This sets us apart from many other places. We’re always here to ensure our customers get the very best. Most other places, the owners don’t even show up.”
Among the many dishes available at Mama Angelo’s that Larry says they’re most noted for are all their pastas, fresh meatballs and Giambotta pork chops.
In fact, if you go to Mama Angelo’s, there’s a contest for anyone to try.
Eat two of the huge Giambotta pork chops in 18 minutes, and you’ll get $18 plus a gift card from the restaurant. They’re that big — and that good — he says.
“No one has completed the task yet,” he said. “Not even close. Some have tried, but it really is a challenge.”
Mama Angelo’s is also noted for its thin-crust, brick-oven pizza. “If you really want Italianstyle pizza, this is it,” he said. Mama Angelo’s is a BOYB establishment. But that hardly matters, given the kind of experience you’ll go through at the place if you give it a try. There’s seating for 65 inside the restaurant, but if you prefer to dine alfresco, there’s also 20 seats outside on the patio.
“People come hungry and always leave satisfied,” he said. “What you get here is true old-world dining — and if people haven’t given us a try yet, we think they’ll enjoy what they see.”
Mama Angelo’s, at 440 Ridge Road, North Arlington, is open Tuesday and Wednesday, 11 a.m. to 9 p.m.; Thursday, 11 a.m. to 9:30 p.m.; Friday and Saturday, 11 a.m. to 10 p.m.; and Sunday, noon to 8 p.m. They’re closed Mondays. For additional information, menus and testimonials, visit www.theoriginalmamaangelos.com or call 201-997-0577. Takeout and delivery from Harrison north to Wood-Ridge is available for free.