The Spot - November 2013


Features Seven Fishes.......................4 A look at the popular Italian tradition of the Feast of the Seven Fishes. Sweet Eats…………………...….6 The holidays are a time to indulge. Forget your diet and dive into a slice of cake. Deck the Homes………....…..8 Local interior designer Roseann Kearney shares her best decorating tips. Fall Cocktails…………….....….11 Mixologists at Bel Posto of Hackensack share recipes for their tastiest toddies. Spotlight……………............…14 Take a peek inside Bel Posto and taste the flavors of Florence come alive. Holiday Flowers……….….....19 John Kosakowski, resident florist at O’Shea’s Florist in Hasbrouck Heights, shares his expertise. Simply Charming……………..20 Classics to trendy, jewelry always makes the perfect holiday gift. Memory Lane………………..…24 Take a break from the hustlebustle and create some memories.
Fall/Winter 2013

Welcome to the inaugural issue of The Spot, a lifestyle magazine published by The County Seat newspaper of Hackensack. This new publication will bring our loyal readers the latest in dining, entertainment, shopping and health. The Spot’s first cover is graced by the legendary Phil Simms, a New York Giants icon. Phil is very involved in the launch of one of the most exciting ventures to come to Bergen County – the HackensackUMC Fitness & Wellness Powered by the Giants. The facility is now under construction on Route 17 in Maywood and promises to bring the best in nutrition and health to our area. In addition to state-of-the-art equipment, the center will have group exercise classes, personal training and medical care facilities. Inside The Spot, you will find a feature on the latest jewelry trends for the holiday season. From classic Tiffany’s pieces to the exotic tanzanite, there’s certainly something for everyone. For those who love to decorate, we have gathered advice from local experts on how to select flowers, host a party and prepare your home for all the special occasions to come. In this issue, we have spotlighted one of the most creative restaurants to recently open its doors in Bergen County – Bel Posto of Hackensack. Chef Paolo Nozzoli, a native of Florence, brings the authentic flavors of Italia to Prospect Avenue complete with a gourmet salumeria and a curated list of wines. Our advertising department has done a magnificent job in presenting a wide selection of what’s best in Bergen County, from restaurants to bakeries, medical offices to real estate firms. Our goal is to make The Spot your go-to guide for what’s new, what’s good and what’s exciting in North Jersey. The Spot is where it’s at!

Edit or’s Not e

The SpOt

Publisher Gail Vachon Editor in Chief Lauren Zisa

S t af f
Graphic Designer Linda Lemos Sales Managers Karen Burke Avis LoVecchio Contributors Barbara J. Gooding Joy Belgiovine Roseann Kearney

Lauren Zisa Editor in Chief

Deputy Editor Melody Travisano Art Director Donald Hatcher or The County Seat, 77 Hudson Street, Hackensack, NJ 07601

P: 201-488-5795 F. 201-343-8720


The Spot - November 2013

The Spot - November 2013


The Feast of the Seven Fishes
By Joy Belgiovine

grew up thinking everyone enjoyed a spread of fish dishes on Christmas Eve. In fact, the dinner was the holiday meal everybody looked forward to most, way more than the pasta and meat served on Christmas Day. Later, I learned that the Feast of the Seven Fishes was strictly an Italian thing. his tradition and the fish served varies from home to home, with some families celebrating with seven seafood dishes and others plating more than a dozen different types. y mother-in-law, Vincenza Minervini, a native of Molfetta in the Puglia region of Italy, explained that the Christmas Eve feast commemorates the La Vigilia di Natale, or the wait of the birth of baby Jesus. ating seafood on Christmas Eve dates back to the Roman Catholic practice of refraining from the consumption of meat or milk products  on Wednesdays, Fridays and (in the Latin church) Saturdays, as well as during Lent and on the eve of specific holy days. As no meat or butter could be used on such days, observant Catholics would instead eat fish, typically fried in oil. he meal often includes seven, eight or even nine specific fishes that are considered traditional such as calamari, mussels, clams, shrimp and filet of sole. The most famous dish Southern Italians are known for is baccala (salted cod fish), where it is rumored that the tradition started. “I remember my mother soaking the baccala in the bathtub a week before Christmas Eve,” said Stephen Lo Iacono, chairman, St. Joseph’s Italian Feast of Lodi.



till, it remains unclear when the term “Feast of the Seven Fishes” was popularized.


“My family actually had a big disagreement over this one Christmas Eve,” Lo Iacono recalled. “Some thought the seven fishes represented the seven sacraments. The other theory was that it stood for the Seven Days of Creation.” thers believe that the seven was selected because it is the most repeated number in the Bible or in honor of the Seven Hills of Rome, which surround the city. y mother-in-law focuses less on the number of fish used, but rather the number of entrees being served. She makes sure that there are 13 different plates on the table at our Christmas Eve dinner. “My mother said the 13 plates was symbolic of the 12 apostles and Jesus. Also, the number is considered good luck in Italian,” she said. osey Celtano of Sal’s Good Eats of Teterboro said that she Americanized the Italian tradition to suit her family’s likes and dislikes. “We stick with about five favorite fish dishes now like linguini with homemade white clam sauce, shrimp oreganata, fruitta di mare (seafood salad), calamari and a flat fish, like tilapia,” she said. “It’s not like the way my mother used to do it with the eel, smeltz and baccala.” While the origins of this time-honored tradition may be disputed and different variations of this traditional meal evolved through the years, one thing is certain – this feast is all about celebrating family and food.
Large Groups & Private Parties Welcome





Open 7 Days Lunch and Dinner Kitchen Open Late

18 HDTV’s


122 West Pleasant Ave Maywood, NJ



Full Satellite Coverage of Your Favorite Sports Event

Happy Hour Monday - Friday 4 - 7 pm Special Pricing on Drinks

From Live Entertainment to Ladies Night, Poker Night NY Bus Trips & Food

Joy Belgiovine is a writer for The Spot and The County Seat newspaper and a resident of Woodcliff Lake.




The Spot - November 2013

The Spot - November 2013



Caramel, chocolate and nuts—oh my!
By Janet Tharpe ome Cook Charlotte Barrett’s Turtle Cake is one decadent dessert. The wonderful flavor combinations in this one will have you cleaning your plate. Be quick when grabbing a piece ... it’ll be gone before you know it.


What You Need 1 box German chocolate or plain chocolate cake mix 1 (8 oz.) bag caramels 1 stick butter 1 can sweetened condensed milk 1 small bag walnuts or pecans (opt.)

• Prepare cake mix as directed on box. • Pour half of the batter into a 9x13 pan and bake for 20 minutes (temperature based on your cake mix instructions). • Mix butter and caramels together in small cooker, let caramels melt. Then, add sweetened condensed milk and stir well. Stir often and do not let burn. Cook and stir this for about 1-2 minutes. • Remove from heat and pour the caramel mixture over first layer of cake. Then pour remaining cake mix batter on top of the caramel mixture and spread gently and evenly. • Bake for about 20-25 minutes or until done. • Let cool before serving.
© 2011 Just A Pinch Recipe Club. Brought to you by American Hometown Media

Sweet Eat s


The Spot - November 2013

The Spot - November 2013


Deck the Homes
By Roseann Kearney
Every year, I get calls from clients asking me to decorate their homes for Christmas and I happily accept because the holiday is so special to me. Christmas is about making magic and creating memories for those we love. For my family, the Christmas season has always been ushered in by the arrival of Santa Claus at the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade. After sitting down to a traditional Thanksgiving dinner with turkey and all the trimmings, the Christmas decorations come out. As an interior designer, I decorate approximately 30 to 40 homes every Christmas season. There is so much to do: Christmas trees, mantles, doorways, staircases, tabletops, light fixtures, windows and more. Christmas lights, specially-selected ribbons, crystals, glass balls, angels, sparkly branches, wreaths, nativities, berries and flowers are gathered and selected carefully. Each home should have its own style and personality, like the people who live there. A Christmas tree with a simple set of clear sparkling lights is so pretty. However, a cluster of trees together, draped in lights is quite magnificent. Simple, but beautiful! I always say the more the merrier and this is how I feel about Christmas trees. People think I am crazy when I suggest multiple trees, but when their homes are complete they are glad they listened. I often put small trees in children’s rooms so they can be personalized. One of my clients has a little girl who begged us to decorate the family room tree in hot pink. So we gave her a tree of her own. She and I decorate together every year. Hot pink glittery Christmas balls, ribbons, and flowers are beautiful in her room, not the center of the house. To see the smile on her face and the twinkle in her eyes when she decorates her hot pink Christmas tree makes everyone so happy.

When I decorate staircases, I cover the railings with garlands of evergreens and inch by inch I then decorate. Sometimes I use decorative fruits and berries. Gold angels, flowers and ribbons will also do the trick. Tin soldiers, trains, cars or snowflakes could be used to turn your home into a winter wonderland. One of my favorite Christmas trees in my home is a little one I put in my kitchen. The tree has clear sparkling lights, ornaments made by my grandchildren, some red berries, handmade wooden toys and plaid ribbon. On top sits an old rag doll. I love sitting at my table and talking about each piece that we’ve collected. I have decorated all kinds of trees and homes and I find that the most important element is to make each home special for the folks that live there. Whether it is a wreath on the door, a rocking horse on a table or a sign on the wall that says “Joy to the World,” keep it happy and always keep it beautiful! Roseann Kearney is a New Jersey-based interior decorator and designer with more than 35 years of experience. She is also a published author and public speaker. For more information she can be reached at 201-290-2647 or


The Spot - November 2013

The Spot - November 2013


Cajun Calamari at Solari’s
A neighborhood favorite for over a decade
The calamari is tossed in a Cajun flour and fried to perfection. While still hot, it is then tossed with red onions and tomatoes in a honey balsamic port wine sauce. Although the name sounds spicy the flavor is sweet and savory.

Solari’s is located at 61 River Street, Hackensack, NJ

Fall Cocktails
New Fashioned
1oz Crown Royal 0.5oz Cîroc Amaretto Splash simple syrup 3 dashes of bitters Snifter glass (straight up after shake) Garnish: orange peel in glass 1oz vodka 1oz orange vodka 0.5oz sour Apple Pucker Martini glass Garnish: Green apple wheel

Granny Smith

Toasted Almond Fudge
1.5oz chocolate vodka 0.5oz Amaretto Splash orange Top off with club soda High ball glass w/ice Topped with chocolate coco powder

0.5oz of Sorel Top off with Champagne Champagne flute glass Garnish: cherry/half orange wedge


Black and Tan
Half Bass Stout Half Bass Beer glass

Bel Frappe’

1oz Licor 43 1oz half ‘n half Rocks glass (shake with rocks into glass) Top off with cinnamon powder and stick

Honey Manhattan

2.5oz of Dewar’s Honey 1.5oz of sweet vermouth Martini glass Garnish: cherry

1oz brandy 0.5oz Triple Sec 2oz of red/white wine Splash of orange juice Martini glass Garnish: skinless orange wheel

Sangria Martini

*Recipes courtesy of Bel Posto of Hackensack

2oz Rum 1oz Cream de Cacao 0.5oz heavy cream Martini glass - sprinkle rim with sugar

Holiday Martini


The Spot - November 2013

The Spot - November 2013




the best of both worlds!


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The 112,000 square foot facility, scheduled to open the end of 2013, includes an expansive fitness floor, an aquatic center featuring three salt-water filtered pools, and a sports performance center with featured workouts coordinated with the assistance of the New York Giants trainers. The center also includes spacious group exercise studios, a Pilates Reformer studio, a day spa, complimentary childcare and Sal’s Good Eats Café. The mission of HackensackUMC Fitness & Wellness Powered by the GIANTS is to help people of all ages and fitness levels achieve their health and wellness goals comfortably and safely. The center offers a personalized approach to fitness and wellness included in the userfriendly, month-to-month memberships including quarterly health risk and fitness assessments for all members.

A multidisciplinary Medical Advisory Panel comprised of physicians from HackensackUMC ensures only the highest standards in programming, training and education. In addition, the center houses the Debra Simon Center for Integrative Medicine, a comprehensive wellness pavilion, offering a myriad of health and wellness services and centers including physical therapy, the Molly Diabetes Education/ Management Center for Adults and Children, nutritional counseling, demonstration cooking studio, behavioral health services, corporate wellness center, as well as, mammography and bone density screening. HackensackUMC Fitness & Wellness Powered by the Giants is designed to satisfy the needs of everyone, from the avid exerciser to the deconditioned, to those with chronic illness. What is your GAMEPLAN for a healthy life?

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*Offer expires 12/15/13. Must show this advertisement. Must be 18 years or older. Must show ID. Cannot be combined with any other offer. Call for details.


The Spot - November 2013

The Spot - November 2013


Spot lig ht Bel Posto ~ A Culinary Trip Around the Globe
the glass. The Gourmet Pantry/ Salumeria is also open daily, allowing guests to sample traditional deli items in addition to Tuscan specialties. Featured fare includes weekly specials, paninis, wraps, hot and cold sandwiches, sushi to go, fresh baked artisan breads, pastries and desserts available daily. Dine and dance the night away on the weekends, with live entertainment every Saturday evening and a DJ or live music every other Friday. Happy Hour is Monday through Thursday, from 4 to 6 p.m. Sunday brunch is served from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. for $24.95 per person and includes a complimentary Mimosa or Bellini. Bel Posto also hosts many regional wine and dinner pairing events. In November, the wines and tastes of Sicily will be featured and, in January, the pairing will focus on California’s Napa Valley. Bel Posto (formerly The Restaurant) is located at 160 Prospect Ave., Hackensack. For more information, call 201-880-8750 or visit www.

By Joy Belgiovine Bel Posto, Italian for “beautiful place,” is an ideal dining destination for an intimate family dinner or a holiday party in Hackensack. Executive Chef Paolo Nozzoli, a native of Florence, Italy, offers guests an eclectic Tuscan menu featuring fresh, local farm-to-table ingredients and showcases his 18 years of experience working in New York City.

“Our philosophy is all about creating a beautiful experience,” said Eric Betley, restaurant manager. “We cater to our clientele and offer a unique and satisfying dining experience close to home.” The menu changes seasonally and the autumnal equinox dinner menu features an assortment of meats and cheeses, as well as appetizer delights such as the Asparagi alle Uova di Quaglia - steamed asparagus with cheese fondue, crispy pro-

sciutto and sunny-side up quail eggs. Entrée favorites include the risotto, made with creamy vialone nano rice, beets, sausage, red wine, gorgonzola cheese and white truffle oil; the Osso Buci di Maiale, a milkbraised Vermont farms pork shank with broccoli and sundried tomato farotto; and the Cacciucco – a Tuscan seafood soup brimming with lobster, crab, mussels, clams, octopus, shrimp, white fish and crostino. In addition to the Italian dinner menu, Bel Posto offers the Sushi World bar, created by master sushi-sashimi chef Saito of Tokyo Shimbashi, Japan. Every Thursday, the sushi bar features the Ladies’ Roll Special from 4 to 10 p.m.

will cater to any type of event and accommodate up to 100 guests in our upstairs party room. We will work with our clients to customize the menu to fit their needs and budget. Our upscale, yet casual atmosphere makes it the perfect setting for your holiday gathering.” The elegant private banquet room also features two balconies for guests to enjoy. For those looking for a quick bite, Bel Posto serves a new bar menu which includes Italian Spuntini, along with classic burgers, hand-crafted pizzas, specialty cocktails, beers from around the world and wines by




Live Entertainment DRISCOIL & SMITH Band Complimentary Hors d’oeuvres Midnight Surprise

New Year’s Eve Party
NO COVER CHARGE Complimentary Champagne Toast Noisemakers, Party Hats at Midnight Open until 5am

“We truly have something for everyone,” said Betley. “We


366 River St. Hackensack
The Spot - November 2013 15


The Spot - November 2013

Enjoy a maintenance free lifestyle in the heart of Rochelle Park overlooking Saddle River Park

Newly constructed elevator building 57 Luxury One and two bedroom apartments Exclusively 55 and older


The Spot - November 2013

The Spot - November 2013


advice for dressing up your home for the holidays: ting is with some colorful leaves scattered along the mantle or on the table. “Tall white birch branches, berries or pinecones create a wonderful and rustic holiday feel,” Kosakowski said. “You can easily incorporate these elements into your place settings or centerpiece.” Another trend when it comes to seasonal décor is potpourri. “Potpourri is making a comeback,” Kosakowski added. “Use the holiday fragrances around your home, along with candles as a nice way to add warmth, spice and color, especially in the bathBefore your guests even step foot in your home, accent your entrance with a wreath. A wreath on the front door is an easy way to make your home appear warm and inviting inside. Kosakowski suggests always using fresh florals.

Say It With
It’s a Wrap

By Joy Belgiovine

the o Au Naturel Doors G Deck

room. Hosts tend to overlook the bathroom, but everyone will go in there throughout the night,” Kosakowski explained. Don’t send your guests home empty-handed. “It can be something small like a votive candle they can use to decorate their home or a little box of chocolates,” Kosakowski said. This is a nice way to end the night and a little gesture goes a long way in making your guests feel welcomed and special.

hether you are having a few friends over for cocktails or the whole family for a feast, your floral decorations are almost as important as what you are serving your guests. John Kosakowski, owner of Bill O’Shea’s Florist and Gifts in Hasbrouck Heights, offers some


Think Long Term

“Use fresh evergreens around your home. They can last a whole month and will give off a wonderful holiday fragrance,” Kosakowski said. Try placing a few evergreen sprigs in clear vases around the house or on the table. Another great way to spruce up your set-



1 499

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The Spot - November 2013

The Spot - November 2013


Simply Charming
By Joy Belgiovine It’s time to take the weight of the world off your shoulders and say goodbye to chunky statement necklaces. When it comes to the accessories of today, less is more. So get ready to ring in 2014 with delicate charms, ranging from timeless, classic styles to trends tailored to you.

Tiffany & Co.
The Atlas design, with its classic Roman numerals, continues to evolve, with Tiffany refining these symbols of empire with the streamlined contours of American design. This seamless blend of the new and the legendary captures the essence of Tiffany— chic, sophisticated—the premier jeweler of elegant simplicity. The Tiffany Atlas jewelry collection is available at Tiffany & Co. locations worldwide and online at
Carla Caruso
Glass sculptor-turnedjewelry designer Carla Caruso is right on point this holiday season with her Twinkle collection. With lovely vintage styling, the Starburst design features beveled edges to create subtle shadows and highlights to emphasize the starburst. The Shooting Star necklace is simple and symbolic, adding just a touch of shine to your décolletage. Carla Caruso’s Twinkle Collection is available online at www.carlacarusojewlery. com and in select stores worldwide.

Chloe + Isabel
The perfect accent to the classic little black dress you’ve reserved for a holiday soiree, Chloe + Isabel’s “Forget Me Knot” sterling pendant features a silver knotted bow with delicate rope details. Feeling less sophisticated and itching for some edge? Check out the “Pavé Spike Pendant” in shiny rhodium plating sprinkled with clear crystal stones. Chloe + Isabel designs are available through a Chloe + Isabel merchandiser or online at

Stella and Dot
Things get personal with Stella and Dot’s charms, which range from classic initials and birthstones to angel wings and apples. Perfect and affordable for gift giving, you can simply sport one at a time or layer them on to display your own personal story around your neck. Stella and Dot accessories are available online

Trend Alert:

Royal Jewels

When it comes to stones, the hottest color for the holidays is royal blue. Tanzanite, one of the rarest gemstones in the world, features a brilliant blue color infused with violet tones. It is only found at the foothills of Mount Kilimanjaro and it’s estimated that only a decade or so supply is left. Tanzanite can only be purchased by retailers from a TanzaniteOne sightholder. Anuja Dangayach, CEO of Color Jewels, Inc., the leading supplier of tanzanite jewelry, said that because of the gem’s rarity and limited supply, it will only be owned by a fortunate few that will be able to pass down this coveted heirloom from generation to generation. 20 The Spot - November 2013 The Spot - November 2013 21

Kick Off the Big Game


Saturday, February 1 11am-5pm Courthouse Green Main Street, Hackensack


Why??? To Get Psyched for THE BIG GAME on Sunday!

Highlights Include:

Winter Carnival Games

Snow Tubing Mountain FU

Winter M
er t rge l OCAL he n Co S l unty Anima USICIANS

N FOOD Options

Marching Band




• Pastries • Cannoli Platters • Football Cookies & Cakes • Specialty Cakes • Cookie Trays • Breads & Rolls
Pre-Order Now for Holiday, Football and Big Game Parties
Deliveries to restaurants, hotels & parties Upon Request

Much More!

Help us set the Guiness Book of World Records record for the largest marshmallow snowman to benefit The Snowflake Youth Foundation! Sponsorships available. Call 201-488-5795 22 The Spot - November 2013


The Spot - November 2013 23

By Barbara J. Gooding

Holiday Hustle-Bustle Alternatives
Hustle-bustle means energetic confusion accompanied by excitement, fuss, stress, anticipation and even anxiety. Sound like the upcoming holiday season? If so, now is the time, before it really begins, to take pause and free yourself from over-emphasis. Each year, we reminisce of past holidays and plan for those we wish to create but that all seems to take the skip out of our steps. I’d like to suggest some alternatives to what you normally do and what you think you have to do so that you can actually enjoy the holidays and those around you. First, take a deep breath. We forget what’s really important is spending time with someone you love. That easily can be done maybe over a cup of coffee or some hot apple cider or just picking up the phone to catch up. Rather than spending time mailing photo-cards or sending e-mails to all your friends and family, pick someone special who could use some cheer or just a hug and visit him or her. Make a meal and give it to a neighbor in need or bring it to a community center. Drop off some food and blankets to your local animal shelter or rescue group. Mail some packages of personal items to our troops fighting overseas. Sort through the toys your children have outgrown and offer them to charities. For many of us, money is tight, so take a turn at making presents or help someone with a house repair or difficult chore. Get away from the madness of shopping malls and take a walk down Main Street. There are so many shops to pop into, holiday music emanating from mounted speakers along the way and the chance to catch a few snowflakes falling. I can remember years back stopping in at Womrath’s bookstore for a holiday book, perhaps getting a charm for my bracelet at Bohrman Jewelers and of course an inexpensive something at Woolworth’s or Grants. So step back and think of how you can make this holiday season special by taking in the spirit of it and transforming it into the best ever without the stress. We can always find something for which we are grateful. Make it all worthwhile for you while bringing joy to others.
Barbara J. Gooding is a creative and historical writer who resides in Hackensack.


The Spot - November 2013


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