Bites from the Editor: November

It’s hard to believe after the weekend we just had here in New Jersey that winter doesn’t officially start until December 22nd. We sure have been taking it on the chin from Mother Nature lately. I’m hoping all of our North Jersey friends are back in the light again soon. I was up in Morristown on Saturday for the Own it Ventures conference, which was a fabulous experience but unfortunately the weather caused many of us, including me, to hit the road early. (When the hotel lights start to flicker, it’s time to go in my book.)

Before the white knuckled drive home, my job at the conference was to serve on the media panel and listen to pitches from woman owned New Jersey companies who are looking for press exposure for their products or services. It was a fascinating experience and I hope I get invited back again next year. There were several yummy presenters who brought samples for everyone to taste. Two stand-outs were the MarionBerry girls with their delicious cookies and the amazing chutneys and relishes from HerbNZest. Their Chive Tomato Relish is amazing. I could taste it over ravioli, as a dipping sauce for Fried Calamari or Mozzarella Sticks, just about anything.  I also had the opportunity to chat with the incredibly sweet, Bridget Graham, owner of Sweetable Eatables whose creations are almost (I said almost) too pretty to eat. You’ll be reading more about this construction worker by day, party favor queen by night later this month.

As Jersey Shore Restaurant week launches this Thursday, we have some special discounts for our Jersey Bites readers. Get $5 off the ticket price for two very exciting events; Sushi and Saki Night at 709 in Point Pleasant Beach and Charley’s Craft Beer and Comedy Show at Charley’s Ocean Grill in Long Branch. Just use promo code: JB when checking out online to get your $5 discount. I will once again be serving as a judge during restaurant week. This time it will be at the Great Jersey Shore Burger Contest this Saturday at Bar Anticipation in Belmar.  I hope you’ll join me for some delicious burgers and a really great time. Click the link for all of Jersey Shore Restaurant Week’s events.

October was a busy month for our Biter Writers and you’ll be reading all about their adventures in the coming month. Ana Montoya got the chance to chat with the one and only Lidia Bastianich in anticipation of her upcoming book signing at Dearborn Market on November 2nd.  I can’t wait to read her interview. I just love Lidia.

This month we are excited to welcome several new contributors. Our new Atlantic County Regional Editor, Michele Errichetti, will be spotlighting Atlantic County Community College’s cafe called Careme. Melody Kettle from the fabulous blog Hot From the Kettle will be bringing us the latest North Jersey restaurant news in her monthly column similarly named, Hot From the Kettle and Kerry Brown, a recent addition to the Burlington County Team, will be sharing her experience with a Shoprite catered Thanksgiving Day feast.

Kathryn Blaze will give us a taste of the Red Monk Asian Bistro in Metuchen while Heidi Raker will be covering the sweeter side of things at the new Sugar & Plumm in Paramus. Sheila Hill breakfasts at the Blue Peach Cafe in Manasquan and Laurie Lee introduces us to one of her favorite Vietnamese restaurants, Mekong Grill in Ridgewood.  Our Diner aficionado, New Jersey Nick, will be sharing his review of the Hillsboro Star Diner and Melissa Yurasits gives us the details on her recent visit to Liberty House Restaurant in Jersey City and their new chef, Ken Trickilo. Deanna Quinones will once again be covering the 14th Annual Chocolate Show in New York City. (A tough assignment but she’s will to make the sacrifice for the sake of a good story.) There’s more, so much more that it is impossible to cover everything here. You’ll just have to tune in every day to see what’s happening.

Speaking of tuning in, this past Saturday I was a guest on the Culinary Conversations radio program hosted by Joe Leone. It’s a fun half hour chat about food in New Jersey. It is now available online for your listening pleasure. You can also catch me chatting about Social Media on the Work Smart Lifestyle show hosted by Britt Michaelian.  Next week, I will be donning my apron and taking part in the Community FoodBank of New Jersey’s Culinary Education program as an honorary student for a day. Look for my story on that provided all fingers survive. And, of course, what would November be without lots of great Thanksgiving recipes? We promise to deliver some fabulous new ideas and some old favorites for your table.

Two last announcements, I know this is getting out of control. There’s just so much going on. We will finally be launching our Restaurant Directory in about a week!!  We are just fine tuning and testing, but most of the hard work is behind us. Thank goodness.  And, last, but definitely not least, we will once again be hosting a fun Giveaway sponsored by Emile Henry. Look for that announcement in a few days and don’t forget to enter.

As always, thank you for reading and thank you for joining in the conversation. If you haven’t done so already, head on over to our Facebook page to hang with the rest of the Jersey Biters. You can also find us on Twitter @JerseyBites.

Deborah Smith, Founder and Executive Editor of  Launched in 2007 as a home for her growing collection of recipes, Jersey Bites soon grew into a hub for all things edible in the Garden State. Deborah is also the founder of, a Deals program that gives back to The Community FoodBank of New Jersey and other local hunger relief programs in your neighborhood.  Register Today.