From record crowds for the opening of MrBeast Burger at the American Dream Mall to low-key openings and announcements of spots opening soon, we’re all about the exciting new restaurants emerging in New Jersey this season.
BBQ chicken, Bayonne
The new bb.q Chicken, which also opened spots in Neptune and Westwood earlier in 2022, has now moved to Bayonne. With a two-day marinating and frying process that keeps the chicken extra crispy, even with the sauce on, the most popular varieties are Golden Original, Secret Sauce and Honey Garlic. Also be sure to try the newly released Maple Crunch variety.
Ristorante Lucca & Piano Lounge, Bordentown
Fine Italian cuisine and top-notch service await guests at Ristorante Lucca. The restaurant will offer seafood, steaks and homemade pastas, as well as an extensive wine list including high-quality Italian wines. Guests can enter the Piano Lounge for a sophisticated experience in a luxurious, low-light setting. The restaurant is coming soon, although no opening date has been announced.
Restaurant Lucca & Piano Lounge
Ray’s Roadside Kitchen, Cream Ridge
This Cream Ridge restaurant offers home-style comfort food in a warm setting. Owner Ray
Sheehan, who also responds to the name BBQ Buddha, is an award-winning barbecue sauce maker, author and cue expert. The new restaurant offers plenty of comfort food, including crispy fried chicken, pulled pork, beef brisket and burgers. Try the Pit Life burger, topped with bacon, onion rings and Kansas City barbecue sauce.
Ray’s Roadside Kitchen
465 Route 539
Flaming Grill Modern Buffet, East Hannover
Flaming Grill is not your traditional restaurant. On the contrary, the chain, which just opened its first location in New Jersey, offers buffet dining, with a range of dishes. Stations including Seafood, American, Hibachi, Sushi and Chinese. The restaurant is BYOB, so feel free to bring a bottle of your favorite wine. Lunch and dinner are $14 and $25 respectively for adults. (Prices are subject to change.)
Flamboyant grill and modern buffet
240 Route 10 West
MrBeast Burger, East Rutherford
Thousands of people gathered at the American Dream Mall in East Rutherford for the late summer opening of the new MrBeast Burger, created by YouTuber Jimmy Donaldson. The new space offered a limited menu, likely to expand to begin with. In addition to several burger options, including plant-based options, the menu features grilled cheese and fried chicken, including a Nashville Hot Chicken Sandwich.
Vinoteca, East Rutherford
The American Dream Mall has a new wine bar. However, it sets itself apart by offering a self-serve wine experience, where customers can choose from 64 wines and four drafts of beer, and simply tap the machine to dispense their own drink. Although the self-serve function is the main draw, Vinoteca also offers tasty cheese and charcuterie boards, flatbreads and paninis.
JJ Dak, Fort Lee
Wood-fired roast chicken takes center stage at this newly opened Korean restaurant in Fort Lee. Open for dinner and drinks, JJ Dak’s wood-fired approach includes the use of oak and cherry wood. The finished product is served on a hot stone with a crispy paella. Salads and sharing dishes are also available, including smoked pork belly and Korean yang-nyum wings.
144 Main Street
Angelico Vineyard, Lambertville
Owner Ottavio Angelico, originally from Sicily, brought his family’s art of creating delicious wines to the United States with Angelico Winery, which opened in late August. Angelico Winery offers guided tastings and wine tours, as well as many varieties of wines, including reds, whites, and rosés. Large groups are encouraged to make reservations.
20 Hamp Road
Dao Madison, Madison
The family-run Dao Madison offers upscale Chinese cuisine in a quaint and relaxing space. The menu includes classic and traditional dishes, with specialties such as Hunan lamb, Peking duck and many poultry and seafood options. The restaurant manages to bring together traditional Chinese elements with a modern twist.
258 Main Street
Premier 259, Riverside
Upscale, casual American cuisine makes Prime 259 the perfect spot for a date, weekend getaway, or after-work drink. Choose from entree options including pasta, seafood, and various meats. And don’t forget to check out the long list of entries. During happy hour, enjoy drink specials and a live DJ. From Moscow mules to espresso martinis, you’ll find a cocktail for every palate.
259 Johnson Ave
Double Dyme Tavern, South Amboy
Owner Michelle Gadaleta introduces her self-proclaimed “dive bar” to South Amboy. The tavern offers spicy cuisine in a warm atmosphere with a seasonal menu. Daily specials and happy hour options add to the variety. Signature cocktails are also on the menu, including Double Dyme’s spin on a spicy margarita, lemon martini, and Tom Collins.
Double Dyme Tavern
528 Ridgeway Avenue
Safu Sushi and Raw Bar, Toms River
In the works since March, Sáfu Sushi and Raw Bar in Toms River finally opened its doors on September 8. The restaurant serves everything sushi, from classics to specialty rolls, as well as traditional Japanese appetizers including gyoza and shumai. Nearly two dozen specialty rolls are on the menu. Check out the Spicy Firecracker Roll and the Holiday Roll, made with fresh mango.
Safu Sushi and Raw Bar
10 Washington Street