A Touch of Italy's patrons are like one big Italian family. "We have a lot of repeat customers and when they come in they say it's like visiting with relatives," owner Lena Palladino says.

A Touch of Italy is an Italian restaurant in Egg Harbor Township known for offering authentic cuisine - including its homemade Bolognese and marinara sauce, pasta dishes and an extensive wood-oven pizza menu - and its friendly, consistent service.

"We're very personable and we like to get to know our customers," Palladino says.

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A Touch of Italy was the dream of Lena Palladino's late husband, Joseph, who, when he was alive, was its head chef.

The restaurant opened in 1981 in a small shopping center in Pleasantville and relocated to its current location in Egg Harbor Township 12 years later. They were looking for a larger venue, Palladino says.

The current restaurant has a large dining room, several private rooms and a bar area featuring a daily happy hour and year-round live entertainment several nights a week.

Entertainment, happy hour:

A Touch of Italy hosts live entertainment every Tuesday to Saturday night starting at 6 p.m.

Its current entertainment lineup includes Lisa Camp and Judi Glover every Tuesday; Alex Glover and Bob Mower on Wednesdays; Doug Jennings and Bob Mower on Thursdays; an assortment of performers on Fridays; and Mike Volpe on Saturdays, a house favorite at A Touch of Italy, who performs a variety of oldies music. This Friday's entertainment will be announced on its Facebook page.

The restaurant also has a year-round daily happy hour with food and drink specials. Happy hour is set for 3:45 to 6 p.m. Mondays to Fridays and 2 to 5 p.m. Sundays and includes a $5 tapas menu, $3 draft Coors Light and Yuengling, $4 Stella Artois and $4 house wine and wine drinks.

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