Delicious Dining in a Welcoming Setting At Alfonso’s Pizzeria & Restaurant
FAMILY STYLE: “We’re a family restaurant, family-owned and operated. We’re set apart by our commitment to having a family business, our welcoming atmosphere for all our customers, and, of course, by our delicious food.” Alessandro (Alex) and Kim Borredon, owners of Alfonso’s Pizzeria & Restaurant in the Princeton North Shopping Center, are proud of their 23 years in business.
By Jean Stratton
What is it about Italian food that is so appealing? Whether it’s pizza, pasta, or paninis, diners can’t get enough of it.
Kim and Alessandro (Alex) Borredon, owners of Alfonso’s Pizzeria & Restaurant in the Princeton North Shopping Center at 1225 State Road, believe they have the answer.
“Italian food is popular because it is healthy, has fresh ingredients — including olive oil and fruits and vegetables — and it tastes good! People in Italy have a passion for food, and that comes through in all their dishes and recipes.”
Whatever the reasons, Alfonso’s customers have been enjoying dining at the restaurant since its early days in 1973, when it was operated by the original Alfonso.
Kim and Alex Borredon purchased it in 1996, and have expanded the menu over the past 23 years.
Cooking brought the Borredons together when they were both working at a restaurant in New Brunswick. Alex had emigrated from Italy at the age of 19, seeking a new adventure and opportunities in the U.S. Even though he didn’t speak English at the time, he learned quickly, and found that restaurant work suited his skills and personality.
“At the time we purchased Alfonso’s, it was primarily focused on pizza,” recalls Kim. “It took a lot of hard work and dedication, and, over time, we totally revised the menu. It has evolved into a full-fledged Italian restaurant.”
Indeed! Enthusiastic customers line up for lunch, dinner, and takeout, and also avail themselves of the catering opportunities. Seating is available for 62 diners, including outside tables. Private parties can also be accommodated in a special area of the restaurant.
“People in Italy love food and their special recipes,” says Kim. “We go to Italy every other year to see Alex’s family, and we get inspiration there and new ideas for the restaurant.”
Customers will find plenty of dining inspiration when they stop in for lunch of dinner at Alfonso’s. Everything from appetizers to pizza to sandwiches and salads to pasta and seafood specialties to desserts are in demand.
Especially popular are the Pizza Margherita, Rigatoni alla Vodka, and Chicken Francese, note the owners. The Seafood Combo with shrimp, clams, mussels, and calamari in a light marinara sauce over linguini is another top choice.
Appetizers include the all-time favorite garlic knots; and the Strawberry Fields Salad with mixed greens, strawberries, grilled chicken, nuts, and goat cheese, served with a creamy balsamic dressing, is an irresistible choice.
Stromboli and Calzone
A variety of pizzas, including deep dish, white, and gluten-free, offer many tasting opportunities, and sandwiches include the traditional Stromboli and Calzone, as well as a large selection of hot and cold subs, and various hamburgers.
Pasta dishes of every kind continue to be favorites, as are such popular Italian dishes as Chicken Cacciatore, Veal Parmigiana, Lasagna, Meatballs, and Sausage and Peppers.
There are also specials at the restaurant, including weekly dinner specials, and daily discounted lunch specials. In addition, a large display case features the wide variety of items — from pizzas to sandwiches, salads, and garlic knots — just in case diners need a visual aid to help prompt their selection.
Tea, coffee, espresso, and cappuccino, along with sodas and bottled water, are all available, as is a selection of delicious desserts, such as cheesecake, carrot cake, and cannoli, among others. The restaurant has a BYO policy, and many customers bring wine or beer to enjoy with dinner.
Alfonso’s also offers special catering and private party menus for all sizes and types of events. The restaurant has room for on-site parties for more than 30 people.
The attractive decor, with its Italian motif and pictures of Naples (Alex’s original home area), introduces an authentic ambiance, adding to the overall enjoyment.
Regular customers are the mainstay of the client base, and many have been coming from the beginning of the Borredons’ association with Alfonso’s.
“They come from all over the Princeton area, with their families, and kids often come in after their team events,” reports Alex. “We look forward to seeing everyone.”
“We do our best every day, serving our customers with our special recipes and locally-sourced products, and we always try to make it better,” adds Kim. Both she and Alex still enjoy cooking their favorite recipes.
“We have a real sense of loyalty to our customers and to our staff, and they are very loyal in return. Many of our staff members have been with us for more than 10 years, some as many as 19 years.”
The Borredons make every effort to keep the costs as affordable as possible, they point out. Salads start at $4.95, garlic knots (5) at $3.50, sandwiches from $6.95, pizzas from $9.95, and entrees from $10.95.
Being part of the community is very important to the Borredons, and they are active in supporting various clubs, organizations, camps, and libraries.
“We look forward to many more years here, and continuing to offer the best value, the freshest food, and to providing a pleasant dining experience for everyone. Work is our biggest pleasure, and we are so glad to be here with the people, both customers and staff. Our focus always is having the best family restaurant and pleasing our customers. Let our family cook for your family!”
Reservations are suggested, but not required. The restaurant is open daily, 10 a.m. to 10 p.m. (609) 924-8351. Website: www.alfonsospizzaofprinceton.com.