This fall, an Italian superstore expands, a bocce league forms across the bridge, and an Italian standby reinvents itself

by Marisa Procopio

reviving a legend

After taking over Gaetano’s last summer—one of Red Bank’s favorite hotspots—owner Louis Andrianos rejuvenated the classic Italian restaurant, while maintaining its authentic menu. So now, in addition to offering longtime customers favorites like Italian
Eggrolls and Lamb Osso Bucco, the restaurant features some lighter fare made from fresh, local ingredients. Expect a wide range of appetizers and homemade pastas, as well as an affordablypriced lunch menu filled with salads, burgers, and sandwiches. The crispy bread and thin-crust brick-oven pizza are all made in-house,and brunch is also being served daily, featuring a range of omelets, egg sandwiches, and freshly made waffles and pancakes. 10 Wallace Street,

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an even more super supermarket

When John Livoti opened Livoti’s Old World Market in Aberdeeen in 2010, his produce, meat, prepared foods, and Italian specialties were a hit. So, the Colts Neck resident, who worked for years at a New York grocer and grew up part of an Italian family that simply loved food, expanded the business to Marlboro in 2014.

Lash Spread

In July, the Italian superstore grew once again, opening a third location in the recently revamped Middletown Shopping Center on Route 35, in a 15,000-square-foot space that formerly housed a Pathmark. For his largest store, the owner explained that he chose Middletown because of its central location and because many Staten Island and Brooklyn residents are settling in the area.

The specialty market features a mozzarella station where customers can watch fresh cheese made daily, a gourmet bakery, and a wide selection of prepared foods. Look for weekly circulars and catering menus, too. 1151 US Route 35, Middletown,

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a lega of his own

Three years ago, Vincent Malerba wanted to add an authentic slice of Tuscany to the expansive grounds of Angelina’s Ristorante, his Italian eatery in Tottenville, Staten Island. So, he built a bocce court.

“I did all of the research, shipped in 1,200 yards of crushed oyster shells, and spent close to $20,000 to get it right,” Malerba said. “But never imagined it would become as big as it has.”

Attracting 600 to 1,000 players and onlookers each Wednesday,
Angelina’s bocce league (“lega” in Italian) has grown from 16 teams to 56, requiring Malerba to expand to three courts. From spring until fall, visitors can also expect outdoor cocktails and a DJ.

Separated into two divisions, the league follows a loose schedule, with games scheduled every half hour. League play wraps up around 11 p.m., but patrons often stay until 1 a.m. to play for fun.

“It’s a great excuse to get out on a Wednesday night,” Malerba said. “Teams make up T-shirts and get creative with names. We have teams like Jersey Girls, the Bocce Ballers, and Three Men and a Baby.” And while there is currently a waiting list to register for matches, Malerba said that all are welcome to enjoy the festivities. 399 Ellis Street,

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