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Javier's (nuevo Latin in Saratoga Springs)

Good points.

about 8 hours ago
ELA in New York State (exc. NYC)

Javier's (nuevo Latin in Saratoga Springs)

Yes, a shame...and it speaks to the economy, the landscape of the industry and much more. People can say a BYO can't make it, a small place can't make it, and so on and so on. I hate oversimplifying, but if you have "the product" then people will come. It might be that not enough will come to make up for a poor business model, bad/expensive lease, poor management, etc.

We've all seen places that were massively crowded, "doing great" so to speak -- and they closed. Massively crowded and massive "revenue" doesn't have anything to do with making money or "profit".

I always liked Javier's, and I liked a few of the places that used to be in this location.

I found great real rye bread in NJ!

Very good bread/bakery...got a rye bread there not that long ago. I didn't really look around, just needed a rye and run, LOL. It was very good.

Nov 20, 2014
ELA in New Jersey

I found great real rye bread in NJ!

Yes, I've had it -- very good rye. I haven't been there in a few years (did they move?), but I don't remember their rye being a "Jewish rye" so to speak...is it? I remember it being a "heavier" and "heartier" type of rye.

Thanks in advance.

Nov 20, 2014
ELA in New Jersey

I found great real rye bread in NJ!

I've had rye from WF...yes, very good in my opinion.

Nov 20, 2014
ELA in New Jersey

I found great real rye bread in NJ!

Very good rye bread. I used to live in CP, and went there often -- and while I haven't been there in several years, I don't know that their rye bread is like the "Jewish rye" some here have commented on/requested.

I remember their rye, but I don't remember them doing a Jewish rye.

Have you been recently? Do you know? Thanks in advance.

Nov 20, 2014
ELA in New Jersey

around metlife stadium

Yes, I can see people saying it's old and tired. A friend of mine said it "jumped the shark" years ago. For non-regulars, people new to the area, visitors, etc. -- I can see it being fun, enjoyable, good food, etc. The menu is still strong, in-depth, varied, wide-ranging, etc. (at least it was last time I was there, LOL).

As far as Cafe Matisse and a football game on the same day/night...to each their own! LOL. Actually, I did it, but that's just me. Might not sound ideal, but who knows. It just could be, LOL.

Nov 18, 2014
ELA in New Jersey

around metlife stadium

I think the "not to be missed" is Cafe Matisse...note that it is a BYO restaurant. Google it, do your homework, etc. -- you will find it is widely considered one of the best restaurants in Northern NJ and perhaps the state.

Park and Orchard is good -- however, while I've liked it in the past, at times a lot, I would not call it a "not to be missed.

Nov 18, 2014
ELA in New Jersey

Food in Newark Airport?

I agree with these comments. The Gallagher's in Newark Airport, in my opinion, is not even in the same category as the Gallagher's in NYC. Perhaps this was the equivalent of a "licensing" deal so to speak and HMSHost is using the name. But in my opinion, that's all they are using. The burger I had there was not good at all. The steak my partner had was poor. Service was terrible all around. The quality of the service was equal to what I would expect at a fast-food restaurant, and a poor one at that.

My experience at the GCOB was the same.

Nov 17, 2014
ELA in New Jersey

Article: Home cook's top 12 North Jersey (Bergen/Passaic) food stores

Very good list...thanks for posting.

Nov 17, 2014
ELA in New Jersey

Best Restaurants near NJPAC in Newark, NJ?

Adega Grill...but, I'm sorry, you'll have to take a cab....but in my opinion more than worth it.

There are a few other good recommendations here -- Mompou and the Monk Room. Enjoy.

Nov 14, 2014
ELA in New Jersey

Are any NJ Japanese restaurants actually run by Japanese?

I agree, completely. Food in China (different provinces), Italy (different regions), Japan, and so on -- all different. The "Americanized" versions and the landscape are very different.

That said -- there seems to be a small sect of people who play the role of the "authentic police" or even the "semantic police" so to speak. I personally don't have a problem going to a very good Italian restaurant and they say "authentic" or "Northern Italian" or something of the like. Yet, sometimes, I see a few people step up and scream "there's nothing on that menu that you would find in Italy" or "there's no such thing as Northern Italian" cuisine, and so on. So what...to what end?

Personally, I like going to a sushi place, a high end place, where I know there are certain specific, hard to find, etc. types of fish that are not part of the Americanized norm we have come to know. Like I said above, I know places where there are two menus, or a short menu for a Japanese clientele, or two types of fatty tuna, etc. I get to learn, broaden my horizons, try things I might not normally get to try. That's just me though, LOL.

Nov 14, 2014
ELA in New Jersey

Blu - Montclair

Place is excellent in my opinion. Chef is brilliant in my opinion. Go, in my opinion.

As far as closing -- there's another thread here with details.

Nov 12, 2014
ELA in New Jersey

Diners in New Jersey near the Garden State Parkway, preferably near Montclair

Yes, when I lived in Fort Lee/Cliffside Park, we would go to the Waterfall often...there or the Point, LOL. Regardless, when it first opened Waterfall was a good diner. Like many and often, they seemed to slip over time. Not sure if it changed hands or what.

I know they ultimately became Gotham City, although I haven't been to that location ever.

Whenever I am around Fair Lawn, there is often a need to go to a diner, so we have a selection between Fair Lawn, Paramus, etc. I used to like Land and Sea, and Empress wasn't bad either. As I said -- today, my first choice by far, for any diner in the area would be Gotham City. Seems to be a rarity amongst diners, in my opinion -- quality of food, portion, service, etc.

Nov 11, 2014
ELA in New Jersey

Diners in New Jersey near the Garden State Parkway, preferably near Montclair

LOL...

Nov 11, 2014
ELA in New Jersey

Diners in New Jersey near the Garden State Parkway, preferably near Montclair

Great!!! Glad to hear!!! Yes, a very good burger -- and I've only had a couple of desserts, but they have been excellent. The service is excellent as well.

Nov 11, 2014
ELA in New Jersey

In need of an AFFORDABLE venue for small intimate wedding

Agreed...I won't jump into the deep end of the pool with the experts...but having thrown numerous events...and currently doing about a half dozen a year at Bacari...I will agree 1000%.

There are numerous caterers you can speak with as well -- professional, reputable, quality, etc.

A professional caterer won't just drop off food and run, especially if you ask them to be involved in more facility related issues; but alas, I've already said too much...leaving it to the experts. LOL.

Nov 11, 2014
ELA in New Jersey

Diners in New Jersey near the Garden State Parkway, preferably near Montclair

I am not from there...just visit with some friends, clients, etc. once in a while. Happen to have been there lately a few times, and had dinner twice at the Gotham City Diner.

Sorry, I don't know the ice cream stand.

Nov 10, 2014
ELA in New Jersey

Accessible in Montclair

Thanks for the update...

Nov 10, 2014
ELA in New Jersey

Diners in New Jersey near the Garden State Parkway, preferably near Montclair

That is correct...Land & Sea is still there, still serving, etc.

Take a look at google maps, street view, etc. -- maybe you can figure it out. Like I said, I don't remember a Dunkin Donuts on the spot where the GC Diner is, as opposed to the one right down the road. From Brookside, you could walk to either location, LOL.

From all the diners in the area -- and I am not a big fan of diners -- Gotham City Diner is the best for my likes, tastes, etc. Just my opinion.

Nov 10, 2014
ELA in New Jersey

Diners in New Jersey near the Garden State Parkway, preferably near Montclair

I don't know if there was a Dunkin Donuts where the diner now is.

There is a Dunkin Donuts very close by, same side of the street, but a couple of blocks further west, on Broadway. It's on the corner of Broadway and Fair Lawn Parkway.

The diner is just a couple of blocks east, on Broadway, but it's where Broadway merges into the service road/exit, Route 4 merge, etc.

Nov 09, 2014
ELA in New Jersey

Accessible in Montclair

Thank you.

That's a shame...if you have the opportunity, perhaps you can find out the current status of his plans.

Going into NYC for his next venture might seem like a next logical, and very good, step. With the right people, situation and opportunity -- he can be a real superstar; not that he already isn't, but I more meant that he can even get to the next, higher level of "superstar chef".

Nov 09, 2014
ELA in New Jersey

Laurita Winery - Rock the BBQ Festival 2014

Or, unfortunately, to not go at all...if this type of situation is eminent. Even if an event has not outgrown the venue -- it still has to be organized, run professionally, efficient, etc.

Nov 09, 2014
ELA in New Jersey

Bobby Q's Smokehouse - Suffern

Mighty Quinn's is in Clifton...and in my opinion is not even a visible competitor to Fink's. You can see my comments/review of MQ's on the respective thread (MQ's is in the title).

Nov 09, 2014
ELA in New York State (exc. NYC)

just on this side of the river?

I haven't been there in a while, but Rebecca's (in Edgewater) is an excellent, off-the-radar, place. It is one of my favorites. Excellent food, ambiance, and service. It was family owned and operated (Husband and wife, and husband's mother), hands-on, active management -- and they take a lot of pride in their food and restaurant. It's a place to go for "something different" so to speak and in some way. It's not going to be your typical Chart House type of place, or some larger, more upscale venue. It is small, intimate, in certain ways romantic, but not overly, yet it has a classy, intimate ambiance.

It is BYO, but they have the wine license that allows a restaurant to serve wine from a specific NJ winery...so they serve wines from Villa Milagro Vineyards.

While it might be too cold -- I don't know if they have/use those industrial lamp-tower/space heaters -- they have a beautiful, outside, cliff/rock garden.

All in all -- an excellent place.

Nov 09, 2014
ELA in New Jersey

Accessible in Montclair

I am hoping -- that if his intention was to buy the building and keep Next Door open (and turning the two spaces into one large Next Door) -- even if his efforts to buy the building were unsuccessful, that Next Door would remain open.

This guy, in my opinion, is brilliant, as is his food. If Blu is to close, I hope -- the rumor that he was going to re-locate/re-open it "down the road" in the neighboring town -- was true! Someone in the real estate business had made a passing comment that he was looking at space on Bloomfield Ave., "down the road" -- perhaps in Verona? If you head down Bloomfield Avenue, leaving Montclair, is Verona the next town? Regardless, I hope Blu does re-locate.

As far as Next Door, I very much hope it stays.

Nov 09, 2014
ELA in New Jersey

Accessible in Montclair

Is the info in these two articles not current and accurate any longer?

http://baristanet.com/2014/07/chef-zo...

http://njmonthly.com/articles/restaur...

From one of the articles..."There is a chance Arifai (pronounced ar-EE-fay) will stay on this side of the Hudson, but only if he can buy the building that houses Blu and its more casual, lower priced, offshoot, Next Door (which won NJM’s 2010 Burger Showdown). He says he would then turn it into one big Next Door. “I might open more Next Doors in other Jersey towns,” he says. “One hundred percent of the population understands that food.”"

From the other article..."In the article, Arifai says he has decided to close Blu when his lease expires — no sooner than December 31, but no later than March 2015.

Arifai feels that BYO is the problem for the restaurant, which opened in 2005.

“I’m hugely grateful to my customers, who have supported me all these years,” he said to NJ Monthly, “but younger people, say 25 to 45, are not into BYOs. They want to order cocktails and craft beers. Older customers like to bring their best wines, but they eat out less often. In New York, the idea of high-level food in a super casual space is understood. Here, it doesn’t quite click.”

Next Door fans need not worry. Arifai’s would like to purchase the building that houses Blu and its more casual, lower priced Next Door and expand. “I might open more Next Doors in other Jersey towns,” he says. “One hundred percent of the population understands that food.”"

Nov 09, 2014
ELA in New Jersey

Diners in New Jersey near the Garden State Parkway, preferably near Montclair

Not near Montclair, but a few minutes off the GSP further north...The Gotham City Diner in Fair Lawn...I've had reason to go there several times in the past month of two, and it's been very good (to excellent) every time.

Nov 09, 2014
ELA in New Jersey

Laurita Winery - Rock the BBQ Festival 2014

Sounds like a very poorly run event. Sorry to hear -- if it were done professionally it sounded like it had a lot of potential.

Unfortunately, I've seen, and even more unfortunately I've attended, a few events like this...and when I do...I leave.

Nov 09, 2014
ELA in New Jersey

Crumb Buns/Crumb Cake?

As for crumb cake, you've already heard enough about B&W -- and I agree, B&W has the best crumb cake in Northern NJ in my opinion.

When in the area, I've also gone to Packanack -- and it's a very good bakery. I've had a crumb cake from there, as well as the crumb buns. The latter were very good! The former was also very good, but for my likes, tastes, etc., B&W sets a very high bar. Don't get me wrong, if I were in the Wayne area and wanted something -- I'd immediately go to Packanack for their crumb cake. It is very good -- the best in that area, in my opinion.

Nov 09, 2014
ELA in New Jersey