Those who know Joseph LaNoce can attest to his deepest passion: food.

“It’s a labor of love,” said LaNoce of why he pursued a career as an executive chef.

LaNoce’s more than 40 years in the food industry — first with Saks Fifth Avenue and later in the film industry — have contributed to his recipe for success in the field.

“When you make food for someone, it makes them happy,” LaNoce said. “What I’m doing is something (others) love and appreciate. It’s all about making people happy.”

The chef recently left the film industry to open LaNoce’s Gourmet Market & Catering at 28 Merryall Road in New Milford.

“With his culinary expertise, (Joe) and his staff have created a wonderful market of homemade foods and desserts that remind you of a New York City deli and pizzeria,” said New Milford Mayor Pete Bass.

LaNoce said having driven past the building every day for nearly 20 years and seeing other businesses go in and out, now seemed like the right time to bring his expertise to the community.

“’Let’s do this,’” LaNoce said his wife, Jean Marie, said of launching the business. She designed the interior of the market, complete with a wall-to-wall blackboard that showcases the market’s offerings.

A wood kitchen table, said to have belonged to a customer’s grandmother and used in each of the prior deli/market’s housed there, is the focal point in the reception area, a nod to the building’s past.

The table is where many of the regulars, like resident Bill Cipolla, sit as they sip their morning coffee while waiting for an egg sandwich or pastry.

“Everything they do there is top shelf,” said Cipolla of the market’s fare.

Free coffee is available for all first responders and active or retired military personnel.

The market offers a variety of prepared foods. Everything is made on site, from the smoking of meats right down to the grinding of meat for meatballs.

The staff bakes bread, and makes salads, soups and sauces from scratch. Cake and pastries are also made fresh daily.

Blue plate specials are available Mondays through Fridays. They include meatloaf, pasta, fish, and the slow roasting of turkey, brisket, pork or chicken.

“The food is wonderful…it’s all so delicious,” said resident Sue DeLucia, who added that she eats there almost every day, not only for the food, but because of the warm environment and friendly staff.

“His egg sandwich and home fries are out of this world,” DeLucia said. “And the pork tenderloin.”

Food is made with the “best” ingredients LaNoce can find, he said.

“I only make would I would eat. I taste food for a living,” LaNoce said. “I have to make sure it’s absolutely perfect.”

He planned the kitchen “designed and built for chefs to work in,” according to LaNoce. “I have the best equipment to do any job and make any kind of food.”

Five retired chefs — who are award winning, have worked in New York City establishments, and studied pastries in Austria — work alongside LaNoce. Combined, they have more than 160 years in the industry.

In addition, John Macchaverna of New Milford, is an apprentice, having served alongside LaNoce for the past two years.

“This is a once in a lifetime opportunity,” Macchaverna said. “It’s been life changing. I came here without a path and (LaNoce)” took him under his wing.

The market also has a mobile kitchen, suitable for off-site needs.

Award-winning director and restauranteur Bob Giraldi, of Giraldi Productions, said he looks “forward to (Joe’s) fabulous truck filled with the most delicious seasonal cuisine heavily influenced by his Neapolitan roots.”

“He’s comfortable serving stars, star chefs and crew — all are the same; especially at the end of the meal when everyone shares the same respect and admiration,” he said. “It doesn’t get much better than Joe.”

Jack Noone, a television commercial executive producer from New York who has worked with LaNoce several times, said two things come to mind when he thinks of LaNoce: “commitment to the product and commitment to service.”

He said LaNoce is “clearly passionate about cooking and that comes through in the quality, taste and presentation of his food.”

For more information, call the 28 Merryall Road market at 860-350-0407 or visit