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Saturday, June 23, 2007

Rigatoni with Sausage

I lived in New Jersey for ten years, and I miss it terribly. I spent most of that time playing Ultimate Frisbee with a team that played (and still plays) in Brookdale Park. I spent eight years in Morristown and the last two were in Montclair, just a couple of miles from the park. About half a mile from the park are two locally famous ice cream parlors.

Applegate Farms not only makes fantastic ice cream, but they create a memorable family experience by serving outdoors barn-style (this also means attending their shop is slightly less attractive during winter.) They specialize in ice cream and other deserts, all of which are top-notch.

Holsten's, which is now absurdly famous, is an indoor parlor that also sells candy and has a lunch menu. I wouldn't necessarily go there just for ice cream, but if everyone wanted a meal followed by a sundae, this would be a great place to go.

There are other fantastic local ice cream shops without leaving Holstens' street (Broad Street). There's an unreal Gelato place (sadly I cannot find its name), and yet another fantastic and unassuming homemade ice cream shop called Magic Fountain next to the (ought to be) world-famous Nevada Diner.

None of this is really my point. I'm not trying to talk about ice cream and I'm not going to bring up the restaurants (but oh, how I pine for a dinner at Miele's in Verona, or absolutely anything from Casa Turano.)

My point is that baristanet posted a story where they interviewed the owners and employees of Holsten's about their newfound fame, and when I hear the young waitress speak in what I'll classify as the "Italian North Jersey" accent, all I want is to go home. That's my point. It was that, more than the video of my old neighborhood, more than the thought of satisfying my taste buds. It was the sound of their voices.

Now you will understand: one of the best parts of Miele's, besides the food (sigh), is my memory of the waitress asking "OK, who had the rigatoni with sausage?"

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