Venice Italian Eatery – Pitman, NJ
Pitman, New Jersey seems to be in the news in the Philadelphia area around every December. With their “Keep Christ in Christmas” sign adoring the main street of town to the “Keep Saturn in Saturnalia” sign on the other side of town opposing each others view they are at least keeping their name relevant either way. My question was what goes on the other eleven months of the year?
Well Pitman is set up to be more than just a discussion during the holidays. With their Broadway Theater having entertainment all year with some top-notch performances, a few nice shops to buy odds and ends, and a main street with quite a few dining options they have a little something for everyone it seems. I decided to stop and grab a bite to eat at Venice Italian Eatery (VIE).
The wait staff was very down home and the large majority of patrons seem to come to VIE for their pizza and sandwiches. I was in the mood for a full meal, so I started things out with their Escarole Soup.
Their version of Escarole Soup was of the red variety giving it more of minestrone feel to me since the white beans were missing and escarole almost invisible. The soup was not bad, and it was not great either. It was just not really anything I can think of that an escarole soup should be and did not stand out in any fashion. The fresh bread really helped out with the dipping cup of seasoned olive oil. I would follow-up the soup with chicken marsala.
The chicken marsala was not plated in way that would win any presentation awards, but what it did have was a fantastic down home feel to the meal. The broccoli were nice and fresh and drowned in the butter, lemon, and herbs that it was sauteed in and the chicken was tender and marsala sauce had a nice tone to it with a generous serving of mushrooms to go along and with the nice fresh rolls they provided earlier it really was a joy to sop up all the sauce with the rolls. I could tell that everything was cooked when I ordered and nothing was sitting around. The dish would not pass in most fine dining establishments, but for a location that eighty percent of the menu consisted of pizzeria fare, I was pleasantly surprised. I would end the meal with Boston Cream Pie.
The pitfall of my time at VIE would be the pie. It was obviously very old with the flavor of freezer burn in every bite and the cream did not resemble cream anymore. The only highlight of the dessert would be the whipped cream that topped it.
VIE was very affordable with some definite highs and definite lows of service. I felt like family the minute I set foot inside and everything had a home meal sort of vibe. I would love to go to a show at the theater and walk across the street to enjoy a meal at VIE either before or afterwards. Just make sure you go out for dessert somewhere else.