It’s a season for growth in the Garden State and the restaurant industry is here for it. New cafes, markets, taverns, and even a Korean fried chicken spot have popped up as summer’s kicked in. Start mapping out your home-state culinary road trips—there’s a lot to get to!
Serendipity3, Atlantic City
The iconic NYC restaurant (shown at top, courtesy Serendipity3) now has a location down the coast, in Atlantic City. Serendipity3 offers plenty of exciting sweets, including Belgian waffle varieties and massive ice cream sundaes. Of course, you can dine on a regular savory menu, too. And if you have an unlimited (or close to it!) budget, make sure to try their $1,000 Golden Opulence Sundae. (And if you do, let us know!)
Ocean Casino Resort
Cresskill’s newest Japanese restaurant offers an eight-course Omakase experience, complete with sashimi, tempura, and Chawanmushi. An à la carte menu is available as well, with several sushi options, including maki and temaki rolls. If you’re looking for a more elevated sushi experience, opt for the pre-fixe, five-course sushi dinner.
156 Piermont Road
The Great Greek, Florham Park
This fast-casual Greek chain has finally arrived in New Jersey. With most items made from scratch in-house, customers will certainly get an authentic Greek experience. Greek classics on the menu include tzatziki and spanakopita, plus gyros, souvlaki, and stuffed grape leaves.
The Great Greek
182 Ridgedale Avenue
Valente’s Cucina, Haddonfield
Stop by Valente’s Cucina for modern Italian dishes in a boutique setting. The eatery offers an intimate dining experience, featuring fresh ingredients and a seasonal menu. Executive Chef Johnnie Reynolds, formerly of Ruth’s Chris, works with local farmers to craft unique dishes for an enhanced dining experience. The restaurant reopened on June 17, with reservations available online.
7 Kings Court
Aunt Chubby’s Luncheonette, Hopewell
The recently renovated Chubby’s Luncheonette, in Hopewell, is now Aunt Chubby’s! Customers can stop in for breakfast and brunch selections like Jersey-style eggs Benedict or buttermilk pancakes. The eatery offers coffee, sweets, and lunch options as well. Lunch starts at 11:30, and breakfast is served all day. Those visiting on Saturday or Sunday might want to try the biscuits and gravy—a weekend-only option.
Aunt Chubby’s Luncheonette
1 Railroad Place
Gussy’s Café, Jersey City
Gussy’s serves up brunch all day, with handcrafted sandwiches, custom salads, plenty of bagels, and other breakfast items. The café focuses on serving American classics in a modern atmosphere. Pair any dish with a specialty coffee, such as a matcha latté—complete with gorgeous latté art.
292 Newark Avenue
Jersey Social, Jersey City
After closing briefly for renovations, this neighborhood eatery recently reopened with a new look and menu. Jersey Social is your place to meet for a drink after work, take in your favorite teams on their big-screen TVs, gather for gaming nights—both online and off—or simply enjoy scrumptious food, cocktails, and craft beer.
837 Jersey Avenue
Three Thirds Café, Jersey City
The team behind Amelia’s Bistro recently opened Three Thirds Café, inside the 3 Acres rental community in Jersey City. The café describes itself as a place where “West Coast surfer culture meets premium East Coast roasting.” On that note, it pairs local coffee from Modcup Coffee Co. with baked goods from Englewood’s Balthazar Bakery. Plus, customers can view locally curated art while enjoying the laid-back vibe.
Three Thirds Café
400 Claremont Avenue
MAYA, Long Branch
Chef Nina Clemente built a menu inspired by Mediterranean coastlines for the new MAYA in Long Branch. Located in Pier Village’s WAVE Resort, the thoughtfully designed restaurant offers the best of the Mediterranean, including fresh, seasonal, top-quality ingredients.
Wave Resort, 110 Ocean Avenue
Yesterday’s Creekside Tavern, Marmora
This Roosevelt Boulevard staple is under new ownership and has rebranded. The vibe remains family friendly, but the spot is now open later and features live music in the evenings, plus a DJ with late-night entertainment. Dine inside, or enjoy a drink and a meal in one of three outdoor areas: The Deck Bar, under the outdoor pavilion, or at a picnic table in The Yard, where you can be close-up to the live music.
Yesterday’s Creekside Tavern
316 Roosevelt Boulevard
Wahine Wine Company | Fish & Whistle Market, Ventnor
The Wahine Company and the Fish & Whistle Market are the newest New Jersey ventures of Vanessa Wong, owner of Philadelphia’s Fishtown Social. The two separate spaces operate next door to one another: Wahine Wine offers craft spirits, beers, and wines, while Fish & Whistle Market is a place to purchase gourmet prepared foods, cheese, produce, and more.
Salt + Seed | Sprig Market Café, West Long Branch
Described as a vegan-and-omnivore collective, featuring a market, a BYOB restaurant, and a café. The concept brings Sprig Market Café, which offers options for all preferences, and vegan-only Salt + Seed, together. In addition, guests can shop the market for specialty goods, marinades, stocks, and sauces, as well as plenty of vegan specialties.
bb.q Chicken, Westwood
Korean fried chicken has found a home in Westwood. The new bb.q Chicken has a two-day marination and frying process that keeps the chicken extra crispy—even with the sauce. Despite the name’s resemblance to “barbecue,” it actually means “best of the best quality,” according to Youzi Seo, bb. q Chicken marketing coordinator. “We firmly believe in providing the best quality and proudly showing Korea’s finest fried chicken,” Seo said.
bb. q Chicken
2 Westwood Avenue