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Canvassing Tony Soprano's Neighborhood

Carol Sottili

I visit North Caldwell, N.J., several tiimes a year to see my brother's sister and her husband. The town's claim to fame is the Sopranos. Tony S. and family live in North Caldwell in the show, and much of it is shot in the surrounding area.


Staking out Tony's place like the Feds. (Carol Sottili - TWP)

We did our own short version of the Soprano insider tour this past weekend. We drove past the Soprano family house (I could just picture Tony in the driveway leaning over to pick up the Newark Star-Ledger -- strangely enough, a house on the same cul de sac is where the Unabomber's first victim was killed) and we cruised along Bloomfield Avenue, which Tony calls "Guinea Gulch" (his Sicilian family moved up in the world along Bloomfield Avenue, starting in Newark and then eventually making their way to upscale North Caldwell). I counted 13 ristorantes, trattorias, Italian bakeries and pizza joints along a 2.5 mile long stretch of Bloomfield Avenue, and I bet you can walk into just about any one of them and get a better-than-average plate of pasta fazul or a perfectly stuffed cannoli.

We then headed to my niece's graduation, to Marist College in Poughkeepsie, N.Y. Didn't get to see much of the surrounding area, but I would very much like to return to the nearby towns of Hyde Park and Rhinebeck, site of FDR's home along the Hudson.

Anyone have any insights into New Jersey for Soprano fans, or the Hudson Valley for FDR fans?

By Carol Sottili |  May 23, 2007; 10:52 AM ET  | Category:  Carol Sottili , Mid-Atlantic Destinations
Previous: Are Seat Assignments a Thing of the Past? | Next: Wash a Few Dishes for Lunch

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A few points from a native... Actually, Bloomfield Ave. runs mainly through Caldwell and West Caldwell, not North Caldwell. And 13 pizzerias? I'm pretty sure you missed a few. They are every other storefront! Go check out the newly reopened Forte's on Bloomfield Ave. for some first-rate Italian food. Or try the excellent Italianissimo, further down Bloomfield Avenue in West Caldwell, and the scene of past Soprano's shoots, mostly ones involving the Italianissimo staff handing over huge wads of cash to Tony's men.

If you want to drive the winding hill at the end of the opening montage, it is Mountain Avenue (off Route 46).

It is true that the Unabomber did attack someone on the same street as the Soprano's house, but it was not his first victim. The Unabomber first attacked in 1978. Thomas Mosser was killed 16 years later in 1994 in North Caldwell.

Posted by: Scott from Caldwell | May 23, 2007 1:35 PM

Foodies heading to the Hudson Valley should try to get a reservation at one of the student restaurants at CIA - the Culinary Institute of America - in Hyde Park.

Posted by: Karen | May 23, 2007 3:23 PM

Tony calls "Guinea Gulch" (his Sicilian family moved up in the world along Bloomfield Avenue, starting in Newark and then eventually making their way to upscale North Caldwell)
Tony's family is not Sicilian - if I remember correctly- he is Calabrese ??
Still it's a nice trip.....

Posted by: joan | May 23, 2007 3:34 PM

Isn't your brother's sister and her husband your sister and her husband (or your brother in-law)?

Posted by: Anonymous | May 23, 2007 3:59 PM

Unless it's due to adoption - biological sibling to adopted sibling would have no other relevant connection to the adoptive family.

Posted by: to 3:59 | May 23, 2007 4:04 PM

Should have said my husband's sister. My sister-in-law and brother-in-law.

Posted by: Carol Sottili | May 23, 2007 4:19 PM

The Bada Bing is on Route 80/Route 17 on your way to NYC from the N. Caldwell area, it is actually called Satin Dolls.

Posted by: Anonymous | May 23, 2007 4:35 PM

The Bada Bing is on Route 80/Route 17 on your way to NYC from the N. Caldwell area, it is actually called Satin Dolls.

Posted by: Anonymous | May 23, 2007 4:36 PM

Tony's family is from Avelino, in Campania, not Sicily.

Posted by: Michael Verzatt | May 23, 2007 4:58 PM

while the anglicized version of italian dishes is expected in speech, it is pretty disconcerting to see pasta fagioli written as "pasta fazul".... then is it "mortadell" and "sfogliatell" and whatever else in writing, too? ACK! Penso di NON!

Posted by: jessica | May 29, 2007 1:14 AM

None of your *%$$#$ business where my family is from.

As long as you don't look for me at Dr. Melfi's office, you can look at the house all you want. That's what Carm wants.

Posted by: Tony S. | June 5, 2007 6:40 PM

Well, I guess you told them, Tony!

Posted by: SAR506 | June 11, 2007 6:03 PM

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