Hot From The Kettle™: Richie Cecere's Restarurant & Bar - Remastered

by Melody Kettle

I will admit that since it’s opening in 2002, Richie Cecere’s Restaurant and Bar, located at 2 Erie Street, Montclair, was an establishment cloaked in a prohibitively expensive mystery. 

The impressive, brick and mahogany edifice, across from the Erie Station, seemed unapproachable.  But no longer is that the case!  The ultra-luxe supper club has changed its tune; still swanky and timelessly cool, Cecere’s is now affordable.  The restaurant has revamped their menu, significantly lowering prices, offering a bar menu, and a children’s menu. 

Where else could you enjoy dinner in an mahogany paneled room, seated in a posh black leather banquette and order Stuffed Rigatoni for $16, or Veal Montechino with Prosciutto, Tomato and Fresh Mozzarella for $24.  Not to mention, the kids can nosh on Rose’s Famous Meatball Sandwich, sip a beverage, and have dessert – all for $8! 

Or, perhaps you’re just out for cocktails.  What a bar to sit at!  Top shelf cocktails, and bar menu selections like homemade Onion Rings with a Creole Remoulade for $3,  a Filet Mignon Steak Sandwich for $10, or Quatro Formage Beggars Purse for $8,  all while sitting at a brilliant Italian white and ebonized mahogany bar. Want a soda?  They’ve got Boylan’s too.

It’s difficult to imagine the impressive 14,000 square foot Richie Cecere’s was born  of a century old 2,500 square foot paper mill.  With his creative vision orchestrating the project, Richie Cecere and architect, John Sherman, applied painstaking attention to aesthetic detail and created one of the most striking and remarkable restaurant facilities this side of the Husdon.  A tour of the kitchen revealed not one, but three floors of remarkably spacious, well-equipped, and immaculate kitchens and prep areas I’ve ever seen.   

During my visit to Richie’s, the exuberant and gregarious Executive Chef, and CIA graduate Michael Couso (silent u, pronounced "Coso"), created two wonderful Thanksgiving desserts.  He began by preparing a pumpkin ice cream mixture, then extracted three cups of the un-frozen treat and converted it into a decadent pumpkin creme brulee. 

To see how it's done, watch the video:

Chef Couso shared his recipes with us.  So if you’ve got ramekins and/or an ice cream machine, give it a try:


 For the recipes, visit the Cookbook!


 Richie Cecere’s will be open on Thanksgiving Day serving an all you can eat prix fixe dinner priced at $29 for adults and $14.50 for children.  To make a reservation, give them a call at 973-746-7811.