Gencarelli’s Little Hideaway

You’ll have to walk past the kitchen, and out the back door to find Bloomfield Avenue’s latest dining oasis at Gencarelli’s Cucina. The Baristas recently inaugurated the secluded patio, bedecked with spring flowers, cafe lights, and gurgling fountains.
Basking in the sunlight on a summer-like day, we savored the pear and gorgonzola salad with a side of bright orange, crispy sweet potato fries. Two delicious pasta dished graced out table – garlic linguine with shrimp in a white wine butter sauce and fresh cavatelli with brocolli rabe. But the real eye candy came when we sheepishly agreed to a mid-day dessert indulgence.

Katie%3Adessert.jpgKatie scooped up a pistachio gelato delight elegantly served in a giant martini glass, and we all swooped on the pink pyramid – a white chocolate rasperry mousse concoction, sinfully delicious. And then there was the tart key lime mousse cup, drizzled with lime curd puree and chocolate. We made a pact to repent for our calories with an extra hour on the stair master.
On the lunch menu, you’ll find pastas, paninis (I like the “Ortolano” – grilled veggies with melted Asiago), seafood, steak, and chicken salads, and a light battered calamari accompanied by a palate-pleasing ginger sauce, or the traditional marinara if you prefer. The good news, if you’re already a frequent evening diner, is the dining capacity nearly doubled with the new patio, and Chef Joe Frisari’s prize winning lasagne is now on the menu. Try Gencarelli’s Cucina and Dessert Lounge for lunch Tuesday-Saturday; dinner Tuesday-Sunday, serving until midnight Friday and Saturday. 381 Bloomfield Ave. Montclair. 973-744-8881.

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  1. My best friend came in from San Fransisco this Saturday and we decided that sitting outside at Gencarellis would be a perfect night. The place was beautiful but our overall experience left us very disappointed. Our server, when we could find him (or anyone else), was nice but unbelievably inattentive. We couldn’t get our wine/beer open and we practically begged to get more water. We enjoyed the calamari but my chicken parmesan was so rubbery I couldn’t make a dent in it. My friend got the Rigatoni alla Zingara and the eggplant was so undercooked that we would have returned it if we could find a server. At the very very end of the meal the owner who seemed so sweet came over to fill our water glasses. We don’t particularly like complaining and at that point had been waiting for our check for some time and just wanted to get out so we didn’t say anything. The table next to us was laughing about having the same experience! Looking back I definitely should have mentioned it to the owner. I don’t think I’ll be going back though.

  2. Emily, I am puzzled as to why you didn’t say something about the food and service when you had such a golden opportunity?
    How can a restaurant improve if people just complain among themselves at the restaurant and then complain here some more later, but never say anything to the people who can make amends?

  3. Kate
    I actually plan on going in to speak to the owner since she seemed so lovely but at that moment we were so desperate to leave that we didn’t even want to deal with it anymore. But I completely agree with you that there is no way a restaurant can improve without sincere constructive criticism. I will go back once I’m in the area as I imagine she is open to that feedback.

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