Fascino, the brainchild of celebrity Chef Ryan DePersio and his family, is a study in modern Italian food, coined "Italian without borders." Ryan's unique approach is apparent, showcasing his years with world renowned chefs Jean Georges Vongrichten and David Bouley. Achieving a Zagat food rating of 26, it states, a "consistent" "favorite" for its "elegant", "innovative" interpretations of "traditional" dishes (and his mom's "alluring" desserts). Fourteen years and going strong, Fascino has been renovated, completely redecorated with a fresh new look, and has a newly expanded menu.
Montclair, NJ 07042
Hours of Operation:
Dinner: Monday - Thursday: 5:00pm - 9:30pm, Friday - Saturday: 5:00pm - 10:30pm, Sunday 4:00pm - 9:00pm
Saturday Afternoons - Private Events
$31 to $50
AMEX, Discover, MasterCard, Visa
Public lot within 100 yards of restaurant.
Lackawanna Train Station
Bar Dining, BYO Liquor, BYO Wine, Non-Smoking, Private Room, Wheelchair Access, Wine
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Fascino Ratings and Reviews
What a wonderful experience! Fascino offers a quiet, romantic setting with unhurried, impeccable service. The menu is a delightful blend of dishes that are inventive without being pretentious. So many up scale restaurants now seem to be using unusual and rare ingredients and sacrificing the dish itself...it can get lost in the myriad of textures and exotic flavors. Not so here; each dish was perfectly seasoned and a part of the whole meal. The Beef Carpaccio and the homemade pastas were delicious. The pork chop was so moist and smoky. And the Molten Chocolate Cake was the perfect ending to a perfect meal. We will be back.
We enjoyed this restaurant so much. Everything we tried was absolutely delicious, and we found it refreshing that the chef did not rely on salt for flavor. Each dish was excellently crafted and we all found our meals far exceeded our expectations. The four of us are anxious to return and try more dishes. It was a great birthday dinner, and I couldn't be more pleased.
Excellent food and service. The manager circled the tables often making sure everything was ok and an A+ for BYOB.
The only one minus we didn't expect and appreciate was the lack of flexibility with the tasting menu. In my party of five, us, three women, wanted to order from the regular menu, and the two guys wanted to try the tasting menu. We were told by our waiter that we all needed to order from the tasting menu or the regular menu; so it was one or the other, which was disappointing. Regardless the food was delicious; we all decided for the tasting menu since the guys could always eat more. Definitely worth every penny! But would have liked to have a choice on what I wanted to experiment with, as opposed to being one option or the other.
Our favorite local restaurant. First class service, unbelievable food. The ambiance is cozy and romantic, the only reason I took a star away from it was the music: classic rock’s greatest sing-along hits. Not loud, but it still begged for your attention, which seemed out of place. Sometimes incongruity can elevate all the elements of a work of art, but not in this case. Still, an absolutely unbelievable meal!
Fascino is BYOB, so you can create your own wine pairings.
We made up our own tasting menu. It started with seared foie gras of the day, on brioche toast with a drizzle of honey that melted in our mouths. I would say "like butter", but that would be gross. Like chocolate truffles, perhaps.
Next up was a sculptured Caesar salad - a wedge of baby romaine, with tender prosciutto (no strings attached!), covered in a powdery snowfall of finely grated ricotta salata and a hint of roasted garlic.
Next was a plate of agnolotti in a buttery basil pesto, stuffed and covered with a variety of wild mushrooms. My wife's mild mushroom allergy meant most of that dish was mine, although she loved the pasta.
I finished with a plate of ricotta gnocchi, with a sausage bolognese, fresh basil and grated pecorino. Best gnocchi I've ever had.
My wife had bronzino, perfectly done with crispy skin, resting on a bed of crab fondue, couscous, raisins, olives, baby squashes, and meyer lemon cream.
They make everything in-house - pasta, desserts (including gelato), sauces, bread. So we each had a single scoop of gelato. Hers was caramel, mine was hazelnut with bittersweet dark chocolate sauce. Both were among the best gelatos we had ever tasted.
We've avoided this place for years, because of Montclair's notorious parking. Uber saved the day. We'll be back.
Went to Fascino to celebrate my wife's birthday---as recommended by a friend. The food is very good ( my wife had fish and I had chicken). Generous portions. The service was excellent. Mike was our waiter and he was very attentive and accommodating. Everyone is very friendly. The restaurant is a BYOB, which is a plus. The prices are reasonable. Parking is the only issue. I would recommend, in fact we are going back in mid-February.
Dined here with another couple this week, during the week. They were having some sort of special dinner/ music program, on one side of the restaurant, which we did not know about. I assume this required special reservations, since this was no open to anyone dining there that night.
This event did not interfere with our dining, with the possible exception of slowing the service a bit.
There were no specials this evening, because of the event going on, which was disappointing, but the menu presented plenty of options. We shared polenta fries as an appetizer. They came with a sauce that had little flavor, but the polenta was shaped into thick fries and fried to a gentle crisp. Good texture, but not a lot of taste.
We also shared their ricotta gnocchi. It is among the best I have had, as it is very light and served with a light tomato and sausage sauce.
Two zucchini and apple salads were served. Interesting, and very fresh, but I felt it could have used more apple. The thin ribbons of zucchini did not have enough flavor.
Entrees ranged from Moroccan lamb shank, hanger steak, bronzino and scallops. My lamb shank was tender and flavorful. The hanger steak was tender and cooked just as requested. Large enough that my husband took home enough for lunch the next day. The 4th diner said her bronzino was excellent.
Only two desserts were ordered, a bread pudding and the molten chocolate cake. Both were delicious.
Service was attentive, and we were slow to order. But they never rushed us. We did have to wait quite a while for the appetizers, and everything came out together - the fries, salads and gnocchi. I think they missed the boat here and were trying to catch up. Afterwards, our entrees came out in a timely fashion, as did dessert and coffee.
Very pleasant evening, good food and no complaints. We thought the prices were on a par with other Montclair restaurants. BYO makes it additionally attractive.
Amazing experience. Servers have somehow mastered making sure that you have absolutely everything you need without ever strongly sensing their presence or feeling like they are intruding. Courses timed perfectly, nothing ever felt rushed. Great romantic ambiance and delicious food. Can’t wait to return.
I cannot praise Fascino enough for the wonderful service, hospitality and not to mention absolutely authentic and amazing Italian meal. We were celebrating my parent’s 50th Wedding Anniversary and we had a large group on a busy Saturday evening. From the minute we contacted the restaurant until the very end, they were gracious, flexible and made planning the dinner very easy. They made us feel like family just like you would at a restaurant in Italy. The wait staff was extremely organized and friendly. They even gave my parents a card at the end of the night, which was very kind and thoughtful.
My husband grew up in Florence and we also recently got married in Tuscany so we have eaten our fair share of food in Italy and know what we are talking about when we say we say the food is amazing – no need to travel all the way to Italy! I managed to try most all the dishes we ordered and I can say they were all top notch made with the best ingredients. And if you have a group dinner and opt for the cake, definitely choose the carrot cake with cannoli filling – it was Cynthia’s recommendation and it was spot on! Just delicious.
Thank you to the DePersio family for making my parents’ 50th Wedding Anniversary so very special.
Our server, Michael, was polite, attentive and hospitable. He patiently explained the menu, allowed us to take our time, and we never had to call him over for anything. The restaurant is almost invisible from the street, but hats what makes it a hidden gem. The food was unique, flavorful and good quality. Great for a romantic date night.
It’s the second time I’ve been here and just love the place. It was our two year anniversary and the staff had enough class to write a card in envelope wishing us a happy anniversary, and that combined with the fact our waitress remembered us... can’t say enough.
Food was very good with a selection of different dishes. The polenta fries, gnocchi and octopus were all delicious. Service was great, professional, friendly, attentive and informative. Highly recommend the zeppolis for dessert. Portions were a little small for the price, and Montclair parking is always a little difficult to find.
Overall would definitely recommend and will go back soon!
This place is a gem. The street view is completely deceiving and could almost be missed. However, once you enter, it feels as if you’ve been transported. Although it’s a large establishment, the various nooks and large booths gives it a more intimate feel. The service was phenomenal and the food was fantastic. Will definitely visit again.
Creatively prepared food with great attention to taste and presentation. Expert service and wonderful ambience for both quiet conversation and festive sharing. It's family owned roots are evident in the warmth and inviting tone that permeates your dining experience. A true gem of a restaurant.
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