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Cozy Corto Brings Cucina Povera To the Heights

Cozy Corto Brings Cucina Povera To the Heights

Quite simply, we have fallen in love with Corto. This warm, welcoming Italian restaurant in the Heights may appear unassuming from the outside, but inside, a team of experienced players are bringing you “cucina povera” – i.e. Italian comfort food – with perfect finesse. Restaurateurs Drew Buzzio (Hackensack’s Salumeria Biellese, Birichino) Marc Magliozzi (Hoboken’s Dozzino artisanal pizzeria), Peter Fontana, and Chef Matt Moschella are delivering rustic Italian, made from locally sourced ingredients but inspired from their collective Italian heritages in Northern Italy, Rome, and Sicily. While the menu is quick to change, the quality is a constant.

The homemade pastas, for one. We had great fun trying out new shapes like lumache. It’s a snail-shaped noodle served with a topping of fior di latte – a creamy, house-made cheese – the ultimate comfort food dish on the crisp night we tried it. Fior de latte is also available (and equally delicious) served as an antipasti. On the lighter side, we devoured the best brussels sprouts we’ve ever had, served with pecorino, anchovy, garlic, olive oil and rosemary breadcrumbs. As for entrees, we loved the Angry Chicken, made with tomato, spices and guanciale (cured pork cheek).

With the rotating mene, we’ve endeavored to not get attached to our favorite dishes. There is no wrong ordering at Corto, it’s that kind of restaurant. Congratulations to the Heights neighborhood for this instant classic – affordable, unpretentious, and simply spectacular food. The lovely ambiance and open kitchen add to the charm and comfort of dinner at Corto.
Side notes: Corto is BYOB, and open to host private events.


Corto507 Palisade Avenue, Jersey City; 201-420-6290. Open Tuesday through Sunday for dinner from 5:00 pm to 10:00 pm, and for lunch on Saturday and Sunday from 12pm – 3pm.

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