To say The Sopranos was anchored around food would be an understatement. Every episode of the long-running HBO series (which is available to stream anytime on HBO Now) had at least one or two scenes staged in restaurants, delis, diners, clubs, or kitchens. Food was everywhere in this show. Late night meetings took place in empty dining rooms, bodies of enemies were dismember in butcher shops, and plots were hatched in hushed tones at candle-lit tables. Hell, the whole show staged its finale scene in a diner that has “the best onion rings in the state.”
We’ve gone back through the series in a very hungry search for some of the best places featured throughout the run. Unfortunately, a lot of the places have closed since the show ended ten — yes, ten — years ago. Still, we wanted to make a list of some of our favorite spots, revealing how food gave depth and character to one of the greatest TV shows in history. There are some classic bars, delis, and restaurants that you’ll definitely want to hit up when you’re in the New York/New Jersey area. But you best be sure not to wear a hat in any of classier joints.
PIZZALAND — North Arlington, NJ
‘The Sopranos’ opening credit sequence has become as legendary and parodied as the show itself. The drive from lower Manhattan into the far reaches of the Jersey suburbs takes you ever deeper into Tony’s world.
Pizzland on the Belleville Turnpike always popped out as Tony drove past, toking on his cigar. It’s a hole-in-the-wall joint that serves good pies, overloaded subs, and parm’d everything. It’s everything you could want from an Italian American take-out pizza joint.