Bevacqua’s Reservoir Tavern
90 Parsippany Blvd (US RT 202) Parsippany NJ
Web Site: http://www.mypizza-store.com/
New York City gets the lion’s share of adoration from pizza fans, but those of us who live in the Garden State know that when it comes to pizza, we have some of the oldest continuing operating pizzerias serving traditional American pies anywhere in the country, particularly in areas like Trenton and Elizabeth, where we have legendary places like Delorenzo’s and Santillo’s that have been in operation for several decades. One of these top Jersey pizzerias is Reservoir Tavern in Parsippany, which opened its doors in 1936.
Reservoir Tavern isn’t just a pizzeria, it’s also a full service Italian restaurant and also has a full bar. While I would qualify their Italian offerings as solid Ital-Am red sauce fare, it’s the pizza that keeps me and many other locals coming back again and again. During prime dinner hours it’s not unusual to see the Tavern’s huge parking lot filled with cars and no spaces to be found, and a 45 minute to one hour wait at the front door for seating. My best advice is to come early, if you can.
Main Dining Room
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“Toasties” which are crispy fried meatballs, a specialty of the restaurant.
Sauteed Green Beans with Parmesan Cheese
Rachel ordered Fasta Fagioli (or as we say in the Jerz, Pasta Fazool!) soup, which is one of the best renditions I’ve ever had at restaurant. Hearty, with little bits of chopped bacon in it.
The main event, the pizza. Reservoir Tavern really gets a nice crust char on its pies and has a great tangy sauce. The Tavern’s seasoned brick ovens do a great job on getting the pies cooked thru, with no undercooked doughy layer that plagues a lot of pizzas. You can see they use all fresh veggies and fresh sliced Italian Sausage. This combo pie, one of the specials, was a little watery due to the large vegetable content, I’d advise getting only one vegetable topping at a time.
Special pie closeup.
This is Reservoir Tavern’s Clam Pie. I liked it enough as the crust was fantastic but the quality and quantity of the clams that Reservoir uses isn’t anywhere near the level of what a place like Pepe’s in New Haven (which specializes in this type of pizza) makes. I’m pretty sure they use a canned clam for this. Reservoir Tavern also uses cheese on its clam pie, whereas Pepe’s does not.