Sidelines is a name that is familiar as a local chain of now seven restaurants generally known for pub grub and a gaggle of TVs. In a refreshing change from the sports bar atmo-
sphere, Sidelines Italian Grille, at the corner of Secor and Summerfield Roads in Lambertville, provides a variety of Italian specialties in a calming dining room.
The lighting is pleasant and subdued over 12 booths, with bench backs tall enough for privacy, occupying the middle of the room, with tables lining the room’s edges, all adjacent to a comfortable bar area. Wood beamed ceilings and earth tone accents provide a Tuscan feel. Sidelines Italian Grille is not a large place, but has enough room to comfortably seat almost 100 at a time. The entire restaurant is easily accessible with newly poured side-
walk ramps leading to the entry and the quaint outdoor patio. Parking is convenient, encircling the building. There is a drive-thru pick up window for convenient carry out. The noise level is muted, with a buzz from other diners allowing a comfortable conversation at the table. Sidelines Italian Grille is nicely appointed, but not a fancy place, rather boasting a solid family atmosphere.
Our server was informative and knowledgeable about the menu which has pasta choices as well as items from the grill. Pasta dishes included traditional spaghetti, lasagna, chicken parmesan and seafood pastas with grill offerings of steaks and brochettes and seafoods including salmon, grouper and shrimp.
An impressive variety for a relatively small place, the grill items come with two sides, steamed vegetables, potatoes or pasta (spaghetti with pomodoro house-made red sauce or
linguine in a butter herb sauce). The pasta dishes are served with a salad choice — chopped ( a house blend of crisp fresh greens and other items) the misto ( which also includes fried, salty pancetta) or a classic caesar — or soup — chicken gnocchi or lobster bisque. Soup or salad can be substituted for one of the grill dish sides for a $2 upcharge.
At our table we ordered the Grilled Chicken Caprese ($17.99), a lovely presentation of chicken breasts adorned with fresh tomatoes and basil; the Grouper ($17.99), was served blackened, which really enhanced the flavor of the meaty fish; Chicken Parmigiana ($15.99) on a bed of spaghetti ( we asked for more of the pomodoro sauce, which the
Sidelines Italian Grille Menu Satisfies A pleasing dining option by Jeff Glick server happily delivered to the table); and Lasagna ($14.99) a large portion, baked in its own dish topped with the pomodoro sauce and cheese.
Dessert selections, which we passed on due to the generous dinner portions, include cheesecake and tiramisu along with house-made Zeppoli, warm Italian doughnuts tossed in cinnamon sugar, served with vanilla icing. We will make a return visit and save room for the Italian doughnuts next time.