felicia's 012314 2The Little Silver Panino, at Felicia’s & Sam’s. (Photo by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge)

morsels mediumThe name “Felicia’s and Sam’s” may not shout “Italian,” but restaurants on the Green don’t get much more Italian than this cozy place in Little Silver.

Tucked away behind the CVS drugstore in the Markham Place strip mall, the place is owned by husband-and-wife Felicia and Sam Zaffiro, who emigrated to the United States separately from the same tiny town near the toe of the Italian boot, Vallefiorita.

And while the location and decor say “American luncheonette,” the menu is infused with the benefits of a culture “where every mother makes sure her daughter knows how to cook,” Felicia tells PieHole.

In this case, the sons, too, as Sam wears a chef’s apron and churns out lunches six days a week and dinners on Fridays and Saturdays, the only nights the place is open.

On our recent lunchtime visit, he produced a wonderfully flavorful Little Silver Panino, a hot sandwich comprised of roast beef, fresh mozzarella – the Zaffiro’s make their own – roasted red peppers and pesto dressing on a grilled roll.

The sandwich, priced at $9.50, comes with tortilla chips and salsa.

“Plus, you get Felicia,” says Councilman Dane Mihlon, a regular, referring to the lively master of ceremonies. “That’s entertainment in itself.”

Felicia also insisted we try her cappucino, which she said is “made with a real Italian cappucino machine, with real Italian espresso, by a real Italian.” You should, too.