Garibaldi Peru Mex Pizzeria
As you can tell by the name, its got a lot going on. Almost too much for any single one of these things to work all under one roof: Peruvian, Mexican & Pizza. But I was really pleasantly surprised.
The first time I went to this place was just to grab a slice of pizza when rushing from meeting to meeting. When I am only going to grab a slice, I always try someplace different to test and taste before committing to a whole pizza. When I was in there, I noticed they were also serving a lot of ethnic cuisine. Peruvian, Mexican, Italian and American, wow, they got all the bases covered! Quite frankly I don’t remember how the pizza was but it intrigued me to see them serving ceviche.
So today I was hungry but not so hungry that I could have consumed all of this shown above by myself. I took half of it home. It is the national Peruvian dish known as Lomo Saltado. The dish was good, steaming hot, cooked perfectly with fresh red onions, red bell peppers, plum tomatoes and served over french fries with a side of white rice. I’ve written about Lomo Saltado before, and I’ve had it 3 times in 3 different places here is a photo from my visit to Don Julio a few months ago. You can click on the link too to see my notes and experiences.
Some serve it with crispy french fries on top, some mix them into the stir fry as you see above, and Garibaldi puts them on the bottom to absorb all the juice and its kind of like french fries with gravy you would get at the diner. The chef explained to me that people can make it all types of ways, even with each separate. No matter what the case, it just does not work for me. Its a fine dish, but not one for me. Just like people drool over prime rib, I understand it, but its not for me. But, if I had to eat it, Garibaldi would be the place, its the tastiest and the best I’ve had other than my own reinvention of it which you can find at jrcx.wordpress.com/2012/03/04/lomosaltado – sorry potatoes, as much as I love you, there is no place for you here in this dish.
This place supposedly has the best tacos and serves cactus. Never had cactus, but I plan to when I visit again, they have dozens of very different foods and they all look good. And if you go out with family or a picky crowd, remember, there is always pizza, sandwiches, wings and rotisserie chicken. Again, it has Italian, American, Mexican and Peruvian foods, so there is a lot to explore here, in a very small strip mall place stuck between another pizzeria and an Indian restaurant.
And, they have alternative soft drinks like those from Jarritos, made in Mexico. This one is lime, but they have grapefruit, orange and many others.
Dishes run anywhere from $6 for a sandwich to $14 which is served with sides and is more than enough to feed two people.
So, I was just as equally pleased with my second visit to this small “hole in the wall” (or in this case half a pizzeria in a strip mall easily hidden within another strip mall), just off Rt. 46 East in Parsippany New Jersey. I wanted some authentic food, and I wanted some “home cooked food”. As many of you know, last week left many of us in NJ without power and heat. Sitting in bed under the covers reading, or sitting in the car just to run the heat and listen to the wrath of Hurricane Sandy was becoming quite depressing. So, time for some home cooked food, and not something on the grill which is how I made it through the week. Since I had been grilling thawed sausages and meats from the freezer, time for some fish.
Mojarro is what they called this dish. Its basically lightly fried fillets of tilapia, very light batter, if any at all, served with steamed white rice, red beans and a small salad with a little avocado, cucumber, tomato, and what tasted like Italian dressing. I thought to ask or question it, but I just let it go. The creamy light green sauce was a little spicy, just slightly, which I like. The waitress told me it was a puree of spicy green pepper, but there was something more there, perhaps a touch of cilantro or some yogurt or cream to mellow it out, but it was quite good. The meal came to almost $13 with tax. Not a cheap lunch, nor an expensive one, and in fact it can feed 2 people if you want a light lunch, even then its a big bowl of beans, a lot of rice and plenty of fish as you can see. The same as the Lomo Saltado I had there on my last visit.
Garibaldi Peru Mex Pizzeria (973-808-7028)
107 Route 46 East, Parsippany NJ 07054
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