THE EATBEAT: Giuseppe’s appeals with big entrees, attractive decorGiuseppe’s on DeMers Avenue downtown is a place where you know what to expect. It’s Italian food with a flare and to-go boxes waiting for the many customers who end up taking home part of the generous servings.
By: Marilyn Hagerty, Grand Forks Herald
Giuseppe’s on DeMers Avenue downtown is a place where you know what to expect.
It’s Italian food with a flare and to-go boxes waiting for the many customers who end up taking home part of the generous servings.
Among the pluses is the menu is easy to read and understand.
Giuseppe’s was our choice for dinner on a Friday evening when a friend was visiting from Minneapolis (MF). We called ahead for a reservation and were seated within minutes after arrival.
The place is inviting. Longtime residents of Grand Forks remember it as the offices of the E.J. Lander Co. It has become an appealing restaurant with an old-fashioned ornate metal ceiling. There are big windows looking out on Demers Avenue as well as the alley alongside the restaurant.
Tables are topped with attractive black and white checked cloths that are replaced after each seating. The tableware is of good quality. There is new seating at a side bar for those who are dining alone or those who prefer meals there.
There are 19 choices of entrees as well as a side menu for appetizers and small plates.
My choice was spinach ravioli ($15) and MF ordered balsamic chicken ($18).
The balsamic chicken is presented by Chef Chris Schultz as pulled oven-roasted chicken, sun dried tomatoes, fresh basil, tossed with penne noodles in balsamic marsala sauce. And the dish was topped with chevre and toasted pine nuts.
My house-made ravioli was stuffed with spinach, garlic, ricotta and mozzarella cheese. And, much to my liking, tossed in an Alfredo sauce.
The bread served with the dipping oil is just right. The main dish was enormous, and we ended up taking home half of our entrees. The good part is that the leftovers were excellent when heated up the next day.
Salads were crisp and inviting. And I counted four olives — three black and one green in my nice, crisp salad. I always count the olives.
There usually are two seatings each evening at Giuseppe’s. Customers do not feel rushed. We felt the flavor was there, but some diners I visited felt there was not enough zip to their main dishes.
Chef Schultz seems to have found his niche in Grand Forks at Giuseppe’s. He formerly was with the Toasted Frog in Grand Forks and then Bismarck. He wanted to come back to Grand Forks and joined up with Jeff and Nikki Tellmann in Giuseppe’s. The Tellmanns also operate the Red Pepper restaurants in Grand Forks and Fargo.
Giuseppe’s Italian Ristorante
414 DeMers Ave., Grand Forks
Owners: Jeff and Nikki Tellmann
Executive chef: Chris Schultz
Hours: 5 to 10 p.m. Monday through Saturday
Seating capacity: 42
Reservations: (701) 757-1020
Wine and beer available
Report card: As a small cafe that does not try to be all things to all people, Giusseppe’s rates an A. The average check for two ranges from $35 to $40. Among the pluses is the quality chocolate pieces on the checkout counter as customers leave.
Reach Hagerty at email@example.com or (701) 772-1055.