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New to the Toms River Area can someone tell me about any good restaurants in the area? (please no chains thank you)

Siam Spice is wonderful.
Ja Rock is now closed, unfortunately.
Serenity Cafe is very good.

I'll throw in these as well...
The Cookie Cab
Shut Up and Eat!
Xina
Brasas BBQ
Tacos Sacra

Apr 13, 2013
johnandlisa in New Jersey

Meat BBQ Company-Lacey Rd-Forked River

Have ordered out from there a few times. Good ribs, very spicy sausage, and the pulled pork is nice. Brisket's a bit dry. Overall, been pretty happy with the food so far. They have a pig roast happening for Father's Day, FYI.

May 31, 2012
johnandlisa in New Jersey

BBQ classes in NJ

Viking has a location at Harrah;s in Atlantic City, and they do offer grilling classes. I try to keep up with cooking classes for the next 60 days on our website, FYI.

May 01, 2012
johnandlisa in New Jersey

So NJ BBQ Crawl ChowHounders Wtd

Good point. Can't get too carried away with each place - just enough of a taste to enjoy, but not so much that we're puking by the 3rd location. ;)

I appreciate your ambition, though.

May 13, 2011
johnandlisa in New Jersey

So NJ BBQ Crawl ChowHounders Wtd

Thanks for following the blog! We appreciate all of our readers.

I have been wanting to do a BBQ trail of South Jersey for a couple of years now, so let me know what your ideas are. I have a couple of non-Chowhounds that might be interested in coming as well (one's a Philly food blogger).

John

May 03, 2011
johnandlisa in New Jersey

So NJ BBQ Crawl ChowHounders Wtd

I'm interested. Have wanted to do this for a long time.

John

May 03, 2011
johnandlisa in New Jersey

AZTECA Restaurant & Bakery Toms River NJ

Stopped by today after dinner at Nino's. The place sure smells good (small bakery in the back). Picked up a menu, and will hopefully try them soon.

John

Apr 22, 2011
johnandlisa in New Jersey

New smokehouse/bbq in Manahawkin - anyone been?

It's called Brick Pit Smokehouse & Grill. We've been there once, and it was pretty good. The bbq skirt steak was interesting, though I would probably get it without the sauce next time. We do plan to go back and eventually post about it on our blog. - John

Mar 31, 2011
johnandlisa in New Jersey

Mon/Ocean Cty - Blueberry Pancakes?

Forked River Diner, on Rt 9 in Forked River. Very good pancakes, and the bluberries are in the mix.

May 22, 2009
johnandlisa in Mid-Atlantic

New crab cake place in Forked River

Mud City Crabcakes Co opened last Thursday (5/7). We ordered takeout on Friday, and it was excellent! We got crab cakes, fish and chips, broiled scallops, fried flounder and clam strips. The quality of the fish was on the same level as the Mud City in Manahawkin. - John

May 11, 2009
johnandlisa in New Jersey

New crab cake place in Forked River

It's being opened by the folks from Mud City Crab House in Manahawkin, so I have a good feeling about it. I pass this new locale every day to and from work, and I can't wait. I think my wife said they're looking at a late April or late May opening. - John

Mar 26, 2009
johnandlisa in New Jersey

Looking for a great meal in Burlington, NJ

Birches is supposed to be very good, but I've read some not so good things about the place here: http://www.birchesonline.com/.
I've heard good things about Cafe Gallery: http://www.cafegalleryburlington.com/.
Blue Claw Seafood is very well regarded in the area: http://www.crabeatery.com/.
For diners, you have Dolphin Diner: http://www.dolphindiner.com/.
I've been to Casamari - it's pretty good, but I think it's hyped a bit: http://www.mycasamari.com/

Hope this helps.

- John

Feb 24, 2009
johnandlisa in Mid-Atlantic

MACK AND MANKO'S

Mack and Manco's is very well-known down at the shore. Lisa and I ate there this summer. Their pizza crust is excellent, and it makes up for their OK sauce and cheese. As far as boardwalk pizza goes, which is usually not very good, they're up at the top. - John

Sep 19, 2008
johnandlisa in Mid-Atlantic

Stewarts Drive-Ins

There's also a Stewart's on Route 9 in Tuckerton. Not only does this location have carhop service, it has a small marina. I don't know about boathop service, though. ;)

Sep 19, 2008
johnandlisa in New Jersey

PORKY'S POINT BBQ, ELWOOD, NJ, RTE 30 (WHP)

That sounds intriguing. I'm guessing that his place is seasonal, not year-round. If that's the case, I don't think we'll be able to try them. But I will add them to the ginormous list of places to try. - John

Sep 10, 2008
johnandlisa in Mid-Atlantic

Best "Casual" ITALIAN in Toms River please.......

Yes, Shady Rest does have good pizza. We recently tried them because we had heard about their pizza. Worth the trip.

John

Aug 18, 2008
johnandlisa in New Jersey

Best "Casual" ITALIAN in Toms River please.......

Lisa and I share your pain. I hate to sound like a broken record, but I'll mention the same place I mentioned for pizza in the TR area: Capone's on Washington Street. Give them a try. 17 Washington St. 732.473.1777.

Hope this helps.

John

Aug 05, 2008
johnandlisa in New Jersey

Olga's Diner Seized!

Actually, it's located on the 73/70 circle. There is no diner on the 72/70 circle. Between these two is the 206/70 cricle, and there you have the Red Lion Diner - which is actually pretty decent diner fare.

Sorry about being picky with details like that.

Jul 30, 2008
johnandlisa in Mid-Atlantic

Olga's Diner Seized!

Only ate there once in my life and didn't think much of it as a diner. I guess at one time it was something special. Maybe someday it will be again.

John

Jul 30, 2008
johnandlisa in Mid-Atlantic

Osaka- Toms River

Really? I guess that's why our experiences eating sushi at Jimmy C's were always very good. We're thinking about trying Osaka's other location in a marina in Barnegat. Anyone been there yet?

John

Jul 30, 2008
johnandlisa in New Jersey

La Gondola Lakehurst NJ........................

Ewwww. Sorry the meal turned out like that for you. We've passed that place many times, and even from the road it never gave off any good vibes.

John

Jul 21, 2008
johnandlisa in Mid-Atlantic

Conscientious Catering in South Jersey?

I have two ideas that you might want to try. Go to the Northeast Organic Farming Association of NJ site, www.nofanj.org, and contact the farms listed in the area to see if they work with any caterers. Or, check out SJ Hot Chefs, www.sjhotchefs.com, and see if any of the restaurants do catering. These restaurants are committed to using local ingredients.

Hope this helps.

John

Jul 21, 2008
johnandlisa in Mid-Atlantic

Moonfish, Cape May - Don't do it !

This is interesting. We ate at Moonfish Grill a couple of years ago, and we liked it very much. The chef who used to work at Moonfish is now chef and owner of...Copper Fish. Not sure what to make of all of this, but it's interesting nonetheless. It's a shame that Moonfish couldn't keep up the quality.

Jul 18, 2008
johnandlisa in Mid-Atlantic

Best Pizza In Toms River ?.....

I know it's been a while since I last ate there, but I thought that Capone's on Washington St in downtown made a pretty good pizza. You might want to check them out. The address in 17 Washington St, and the number is 732.473.1777. I couldn't find a website for them.

Jul 18, 2008
johnandlisa in New Jersey

Extreme BBQ

As I mentioned above, Lisa and I really do live about 3 minutes from Extreme BBQ. It is on RT 9 North after you pass Shark Fin Inn. It's a round building, so it's easy to spot (along with the big smoker in front...kind of a dead giveaway there). It is on the small side; there are a few tables and a small counter area with a few stools.

As far as a picnic area, you have options. One of them is kind of a 'secret' park. The intersection between Shark Fin and Extreme BBQ is Route 9 and Beach Blvd. If you go down Beach Blvd and just keep following it, you will eventually come to a small park on your left (there's a house with a manatee mailbox right before it). The park has a few picnic tables, a gazebo, a play area...and a beautiful view of Barnegat Bay. The drive is not even 10 minutes from Route 9.

You could also go up Rt 9, make the left at Lacey Rd, then a right onto Manchester, then on the left will be Gille Park, which is very big with lots of picnic tables. That's about a 10 minute drive.

Hope that helps.

John

Jul 10, 2008
johnandlisa in Mid-Atlantic

New Jersey BBQ Championship

Lisa and I plan to go down either for Friday or Sunday. Looking forward to it.

Jul 08, 2008
johnandlisa in Mid-Atlantic

Extreme BBQ

Now THAT was a wise choice, indeed. Love Extreme BBQ. And it's 3 minutes from my house to boot.

John

Jul 07, 2008
johnandlisa in Mid-Atlantic

Sonic in Waretown Stinks........

Stick with the burgers and tater tots at Sonic. The Coney dogs look nasty in the commericals; I would never order one. You would have been better off going up another mile or so and getting a dog from the Dewey's Dogs truck in Forked River.

Jul 06, 2008
johnandlisa in Chains

Downtown Dinner Club - Toms River

It's on our To Do list. :)

Seriously, though, we do want to try the $25 Wednesday menu. Seems like a good way to sample their food without making a major investment.

John

Jun 26, 2008
johnandlisa in New Jersey

"SHUT UP & EAT" in Toms River?

Lisa and I finally went to Shut Up and Eat yesterday for lunch. Yes, the pajama-clad waitstaff did all say Hello! to us when we came through the door. And there's plenty of pictures and chochkas all over the walls- all very kitschy. The silverware is also purposely mismatched to add to the fun.

Lisa had the Day After Thanksgiving sandwich (turkey, stuffing, gravy and cranberry sauce on white bread), and I had the Hawaii 5-0 (chicken salad on banana bread with a pineapple slice). Both sandwiches were very tasty; even the odd combination of chicken salad and banana bread worked for me...flavor-wise, anyway. Banana bread, as I found out, does not work as sandwich bread structurally. The sandwich was crumbling in my hands. So if you order one, use a fork and knife.

The overall impression was positive. It's not fine dining by any stretch, but it doesn't need to be. Like The Pop Shop in Collingswood, it's kitschy fun with a good amount of thought going into the food. I had a partial view of the kitchen and was watching a lunch salad getting put together. I was happy to see the level of care the salad was getting. To me, there was love in the kitchen.

We will definitely have to try Shut Up and Eat for breakfast.

John

Jun 26, 2008
johnandlisa in New Jersey