Hi. I’m Gina Riley.
Confession 1: I love cooking. I love nurturing through food. I am best found sitting and eating in my own kitchen, with my own family.
Confession 2: I don’t ever think of dining out as an experience. You order, you eat, you leave. Hopefully the food is good.
Confession 3: Obviously, I’d never been to Marcello’s of Suffern.
Marcello’s is a dining experience. It is a feast for the eyes, and for the senses. It is a gastronomist’s heaven. Best of all, when you eat at Marcello’s, you feel like you are the chef’s special guest. A chef who treats you to the best of all things; a chef who teaches you about food as he roams across the dining room greeting guests.
Marcello Russodivito is an international celebrity. He’s been on Regis and Kathie Lee, has cooked for dignitaries and movie stars, and is the author of two critically acclaimed cookbooks. But first and foremost, he is a chef: a chef who is passionate about what he does, and who wants to share that passion with the rest of the world.
So…do you want to hear about the food?
The food was AMAZING!
I went to Marcello’s with my husband, who is the most honest person I know. He will tell me what he thinks when he is thinking it, and does not mince words when it comes to what he does and does not like. His take on Marcello’s: “That was the best food I ever had in my life!”.
Perhaps it was the Luminache in Guazzetto di Funghi e Pomodoro (Sautéed Snails) he had as an appetizer. Or maybe it was the Brasato di Bue al Chianti con Polenta (Beef braised in Chianti with Polenta).
You know what did it for me? Gnocchi al Ragu di Cervo (Homemade Gnocchi with Venison Ragu); and the most delicious chicken I ever had anywhere (Pollo al Mattone: Half Roasted Chicken cooked under a stone served with sautéed Mushrooms, Bacon, and Peas).
Vanilla panna cotta with raspberry sauce. The tiramisu that made Marcello’s famous. The coffee sorbet with berries.
I dream about that panna cotta.
I am planning my next trip back. I am giving my sister in law a gift certificate for one of his cooking classes for her birthday. And as soon as I finish this blog post, I am downloading his e-cookbook “Sale, Pepe, Amore & Fantastia” (Salt, Pepper, Love and Creativity).
For the next best thing to having Marcello greet me at his restaurant is having his recipes welcome me back to my own kitchen.