Reigning North Jersey Pizza Gaina champion is in Lyndhurst
Pizza Gaina, also known as Pizza Rustica, is an incredible Italian pie made for the Easter season. Last year, Muriales Trattoria and Italian Delicacies in Lyndhurst was voted best Pizza Gaina and Pizza Rustica in North Jersey by Jersey Sandwich Joints, which has over 50,000 Facebook followers.
Julia Muriale brought some to our New Jersey 101.5 studios, and I can definitely see why:
What makes your Pizza Gaina so good?
It’s our original family recipe that has been handed down from generation to generation. We stay true to the original ingredients which consist of fresh imported Italian provisions directly from Italy.
What's your story?
My mom, dad, brother and I came to the US from Camini, Calabria, in 1977. My parents were always amazing cooks and bakers, and they taught my brother and me all of the family traditions and recipes. We literally learned from the best. I worked in the corporate world until 2017, and I always felt something was missing. It was always my dream to have my own Italian specialty store and bakery. With the support of my family, I made the decision to take a leap of faith to open up Muriale’s in November of 2017.
What makes Muriales so great?
Muriale’s is a family-owned and operated business. Whenever you come into our home away from home, you will be greeted by any one of our family members. Our entire family is involved in the business in some way, and each plays an integral role in our success.
What's the secret to your success?
We have a reputation for being consistent with our products. We only serve the freshest imported meats and cheeses. All of our food is made fresh daily, on-site from traditional family recipes. I believe our customers feel at home when they come into Muriale’s, and they know they will get the best and finest food and freshly baked items.
What are your specialty items?
Imported Italian meats and cheeses. Traditional Italian cookies and desserts are baked fresh every day. 16 different homemade hot food selections are made every morning. Delicious homemade soups, salads, and sandwiches. Fresh mozzarella made each morning by Nonna herself. Tiramisu, carrot cake, American and Italian cheesecake as well as a variety of other cakes and dessert selections.
Each holiday we feature all of the traditional Italian specialties associated with that holiday. For instance Pizza Rustica at Easter LOL, struffoli (honey balls) at Christmas and for St. Josephs's Day we make San Giuseppe Sfinge and Zeppole, just to name a few.
We also do specialty and custom orders to suit each customer’s needs. We have a full catering menu to make any event special and delicious, from holidays to Christenings, communions, birthdays, baby and bridal showers, the Superbowl or any other event you can think of! We also do dessert tables for any occasion.
If someone were walking in cold, what's the first thing you would tell them to order?
There are too many to name! But for sure Nonna Nina’s Traditional Italian Cookies and Desserts. Everyone goes crazy for our eggplant parmigiana; which is off the hook! Any of our specialty sandwiches, and, of course Nonna Caterina Fresh Mozzarella!
Muriale has survived tough times.
Every business and family has its challenges, and we have had our share of ours, for sure. We lost our father, Francesco in 2019. He was the patriarch of our family and was so proud of Muriale.
Then of course, COVID-19 took a toll on everyone. Just when we were starting to get back on our feet after that, a major flood that resulted in a total loss of the original deli closed us down for three months!!!
Our family pulled together, and with the help of my brother Joe and sister-in-law Angela, my niece, Isabel, and nephews Anthony, Joey and Jonathan, and, of course, our dedicated employees, we were able to reopen in record time- and better than ever!
And of course, our AMAZING customers and friends that believed in us and have offered their patronage and support for all of these years.
It is our hope that the traditions and love for the business will be carried onto the next generation through my niece and nephews and their future generations.
Opinions expressed in the post above are those of New Jersey 101.5 talk show host Steve Trevelise only. Follow him on Twitter @realstevetrev.
You can now listen to Steve Trevelise — On Demand! Discover more about New Jersey’s personalities and what makes the Garden State interesting. Download the Steve Trevelise show wherever you get podcasts, on our free app, or listen right now.
Click here to contact an editor about feedback or a correction for this story.