89 Main Street, Old Tappan, NY
(845) 365-2100 ilportico.com
While heading up the Palisades, we decided to take a #gettinglostandfound detour to Old Tappan. Once we found Main Street, we were transported back to 1776. All of the flags bear the 13 stars of the original colonies and most of the fanfare centers on the 76 House, now a restaurant, where Major John Andre (the British Spy), who conspired with Benedict Arnold to deliver West Point to the Brits, was imprisoned prior to his execution.
The 76 House seems to get all the attention, but Il Portico Restaurante, just down the street, is the one that deserves it. We were the only guests on a late Sunday afternoon and settled in at the bar. The owner was there and we got to talking.
Peppe Pinton was the owner of the Cosmos soccer team in the '70s and '80s. He has been at the center of soccer history with all the greats, Pelé, et al. He now owns, and has for many years, Il Portico. To be honest, the conversation was enough to keep us coming back, but the food was divine. Peppe is Italian, after all. He protected the Cosmos' legacy for years, so it stands to reason that he would not let Italian cooking outside of Italy flag. We had baked clams, a salad and a delectable chicken dish. We had a glass of wine, and Peppe pulled out a favorite of his from behind the bar for a special toast.
Want to meet us there sometime? We promised to return in the spring to sit on the porch with our dog (who Peppe fell in love with) and to enjoy Old Tappan the right way.
XOXO Farm Girl
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