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Anyone try Artisan kitchen bar Hawthorne (Bergen county)?

We just tried this place last weekend, based on the overview I read on bozzyburbs. Sounded like an ideal place - local food, mixed cocktails, etc. Our experience wasn't so hot - first, it's clearly and old jersey banquet hall type place that they tried to restyle, so the atmosphere feels disjointed. We were seated at a table after getting a drink at the bar, and no one came to serve us - not even eye contact from anyone, so we went back to the bar…the bartender was great - she convinced us to stay and try the food: sausage/truffle flatbread, charcuterie & cheese plate (sub par I hate to say, and no one explained the cheeses….maybe I'm asking too much?), mains were OK, bolognese could have feed 3 people. In sum, food "just fine". Manager did apologize profusely and pick up our drinks. Very professional.

Maybe it's growing pains, so if you're local enough, check it out.

May 16, 2015
heidemarie in New Jersey

Chicken Empanadas

These are AMAZINGLY tasty - easy for my first time making empanadas. HOWEVER, they will take up a good chunk of your day

Dec 11, 2011
heidemarie in Recipes

New in Chatham D'Oro

This place is GREAT - chose this place for my wedding rehearsal dinner.....and finally ate their last weekend. Packed on a Saturday night, service was impeccable, every other table seemed to know one another. Nice local feel. Will let you all know how the party goes....

Oct 02, 2011
heidemarie in New Jersey

Where are the Artichokes?

I've been waiting for the BIG artichokes to hit the supermarkets and I haven't seen ANY. I assumed Fairway or Whole Foods would have them already - am I too anxious? Aren't they in season March - May?

If anyone spots the big ones in Bergen County (I'm near Ridgewood), let me know! Thx.

Mar 21, 2010
heidemarie in New Jersey

I'm hosting Christmas - need help on serving etiquette

OK, you're all right - serving dishes it is. I'll grab a few extra white plates/dishes from ikea or home goods this week. and I LOVE the idea of fun kids plates....I have never done this before so I'm probably making a bigger deal of things then I should.

Thx all, happy holidays!

Dec 20, 2009
heidemarie in Not About Food

I'm hosting Christmas - need help on serving etiquette

My mother in law openly voted us to host Christmas this year (yes, a bold, old-school Irish mom move), and I need some advice!

I love to cook, and food isn't the problem - it's serving it. We're hosting 12 adults and 4 little kids, and I'm troubled on how to serve and what to use. While I'm not "formal and traditional" by ANY means, we have a new awesome modern kitchen and living space and I don't want to chintz out either. Overall the family vibe is casual.

It will NOT be sit down, but buffet style - everything on the island and come and get it.

Can I use aluminum trays to serve the dishes? They seem so easy to stick in the oven and keep warm until serving. Is this ugly? Or do I use pyrex and cover with foil to keep warm? Or do I need to use actual serving plates?

Can I use the nice looking plastic dishes and utensils?

I WILL be using real glasses and nice plates for apps.

I welcome all opinions and advice! Thx.

Dec 20, 2009
heidemarie in Not About Food

It's a Chili cook-off! Need special ingredient suggestions

I'm participating in an (amateur) chili-fest in a few weeks and want to do a test batch this weekend. I'm not an avid chili maker - but my friends seem to think I'm a pretty good cook so I can't disappoint!

My plan is to use a fairly generic base recipe, then experiment with some unique ingredients. (good plan/bad plan?)

I'm looking forsome suggestions - I know there are some SUPER passionate Chili people out there. What to do? Meat suggestions? Other ingredients?

Help! Thanks so much~

Sep 25, 2009
heidemarie in Home Cooking

North Fork excursion - so many wineries! How to choose?

Did you go already? Someone mentioned Raphael below - I agree - this place had a great tasting and was absolutely beautiful. Their whites were especially nice...

Westwood NJ Pourquoi Pas review

I've read a couple good reviews on Chowhound about Pourquoi Pas in Westwood, so I finally had the chance to go and I decided I'd share my thoughts - some good some bad.

On our arrival (Westwood NJ, BTW, is gorgeous at night, it was snowing, holiday lights on the trees, just beautiful), we entered seeing that we were the youngest patrons by....30 years or so. This just felt strange. But so what? The decor also felt rather dated and old but again, so what? I came for the food. Their service was fine and friendly (aside from being seated by the door, even though we had a reservation), but we brought beer and white wine neither of which were offered ice to stay cold.

Aside from my main course, the food was severely under seasoned - I don't think any salt was used in cooking these dishes (talk about low-sodium eating, wow). My wild mushroom soup was "earthy" (my husband said gritty, but I'm in denial still), and his onion soup was traditional and bland....his monkfish wrapped in bacon was also bland HOWEVER my beef bourguignon was AMAZING! Truly to die for - a savory warm homey dish served in a little cast iron skillet. Excellent.

Dessert was embaressing so I won't even mention it.

Anyone else had a similar experience? I'm glad I went but it doesn't seem like the chef is interested in keeping this place up to date to attract new customers.....

New Years eve restaurant - bergen county NJ

I'm looking for some recommendations for fun places to go for new years eve dinner - small group of friends, ~8 of us. we did Harvest Bistro last year which was nice, but it might be fun to go to a place where it's OK if we drink too much and get a little's nice to get decked out with your friends for the holidays but not wanting anything "stuffy" at the same time. Any suggestions are welcome!! Anywhere near the RIdgewood area.....Thanks!

Jersey City gift certificate recommendation

I agree with the LightHorse Tavern also, but if they like steak, try Edwards - I think the story is that the chef from old homestead opened this place up - have been there a few times, great neighborhood place....have a drink and steak at the small bar in the unexpected cozy downstairs...or hit the bigger dining room upstairs.

Restaurant's between Hackettstown and Parsippany,

I'd try South City Grill, it has a city restaurant/lounge vibe, really good food, cool atmosphere. There's ALWAYS a line of cars waiting for vallet. On Rt. 46, Parsippany, you can google it. I think this might be a good date place....

The best steak frites in the city?

Pastis! very loud & tight, and can be a bit "sceney" too. but open very late....great desserts as well

Aug 16, 2008
heidemarie in Manhattan

Lunch in Hudson NY this Saturday!

My post isn't showing up (if it does later, this is repetitive), but in case I don't come back to this - check out Monteverde on bear mountain, perfect

Best (nice) restaurants in northern Bergen county NJ

Looking for a place for dinner this weekend in the northern Bergen county area. Looking for great food (obviously) but not stuffy and quiet.

What do I like? Bacari Grill - nice atmosphere, good consistent food, causal but feels like you're "out to dinner" and can always tell people are having a good time. But I go there too often...

Has anyone been to Varka? I heard it's great but want to make sure it's not too formal...

I also love any kind of Bistro (Chef's Table might be too out of the way)

Any thoughts or recos are welcome! THX

Good BYOBs in Northern NJ

Ridgewood in Bergen County has a ton of BYOBs - it's a great town. I recently went to the Village Green - tasting menu on XMas eve - high end, small portions which was actually a pleasant change - great servcie and just a quiet quaint place.

Check online for more restaurants in the area. Thee are a lot of them, and it's basiclaly right off of Rt 17 or Exit 166 parkway.

I heard Radicchio was great too, upscale Italian also in Ridgewood, BYOB.

Dec 31, 2007
heidemarie in New Jersey

Yummiest burger recipes recommended for grilling this weekend?

what do you use for bread for the sliders? great idea, thanks

Aug 30, 2007
heidemarie in Home Cooking

That One Restaurant in Hoboken

Cafe Elysian is nice - it was just redone a few years ago - kind of pricey (although, welcome to hoboken) but nice cozy atmosphere - it retained alot of the old school buidling elements (floors, celinings). Not sure about the reservations though...

The best steak frites in the city?

Artisanal (Park ave/E 32nd) has a nice Streak Frittes as well - unexpectedly nice tender cut fo meat, and not too huge but perfect size dish. It's a bustling french brasserie - loud, fun, AMAZING CHEESE list - start with the fondu for the table. Also has great bread - highly recommended for a fun night. enjoy, happy bday

Aug 30, 2007
heidemarie in Manhattan

Yummiest burger recipes recommended for grilling this weekend?

I'm playing the role of "chef" this weekend down the beach and need some impressive (yet not super fancy) burger recipes--

Any tips on -

best meat to use
special ingredients
unexpected toppings?


Aug 30, 2007
heidemarie in Home Cooking

Kitchen remodel - appliance recommendations??

Any feedback on Viking and Bosch major appliances??? It's so hard to find reviews online!! Any recommendations/tips are GREATLY appreciated.


Aug 29, 2007
heidemarie in Cookware

Hudson Valley restaurant suggestions?

Am I too late? Monteverde restaurant on bear mountain. a must try...AND must see

2 nights in DF???Here's my itinerary??

I just flew back yesterday--we had an AMAZING dinner at Pujol. I hear it's one of the best places in the city - it was quiet at first but we certinaly livened up the place! Everyone had great meals - escargot, cactus salad, squash soup....and main dishes the tops were the short ribs (you really can't go there and not get them. I was the envy of the table...), top sirloin and I don't recall what else but everyone was extremely pleased. Great wine list and the cheese plate was a nice opener as well. Enjoy~
Oh, and the W Hotel bar has great cocktails, if you're in that area.

Jul 23, 2007
heidemarie in Mexico

DF Report

I don't know how old your post is but I'm finding it super helpful as I'm traveling to Mexico City for a week. thanks so much for all the tips!!

Jul 15, 2007
heidemarie in Mexico

Which restaurants do you want to try in Hudson Valley?

I highly recommed Monteverde, a manor right on Bear Mountain. I was there for a small family thing - a small private room was rented out for about 20 of us - and the food was fabulous, good service, but most impressive were the grounds - while we waited we hung out out back, sat on adirondack chiars, waitstaff wandered around outside to take drink orders, and we just walked around and enjoyed the Hudson River view. GORGEOUS. They actually have several outdoor spaces where you can have parties, so you'd actually PREFER wandering around and checking the entire place out for at least a half hour before being seated. the rest of teh interioir looked nice as well. Fairly upscale overall - can't wait to return. It's also an Inn with a few rooms.

Cheese shops in Bergen County NJ?

I'm trying to explore some new really nice cheeses and wondered if there were any cheese specialty shops in Bergen County that anyone has frequented. While I'm a foodie I'm not a food snob and am hoping to learn about cheeses as well - don't want to go to a high end stuffy place where I'm ashamed to ask questions!
There's one in Ridgewood ("The Cheese Shop"?) and I know Whole Foods has alot of choices.....?

Jul 15, 2007
heidemarie in New Jersey

Wine & Cheese nr BKH/Cobble/Carroll/Slope

I know you're looking in the outer borough area, but I just went to Cafe Artisinal in Manhatten this week (32nd & Park I think it was) and that place had a cheese list like no other, plus a "fromagerie" (sp?) that you can discuss your selections with. Not stuffy at all - brasserie atmosphere, fun, great food (not obsene portions either).

Jul 15, 2007
heidemarie in Outer Boroughs

Paramus area Italian restaurant - upscale

Check out my favorite restaurant Bacari Grill ( in Washington twp right next to Paramus - GREAT place warm cozy but pretty big and upscale but totally reasonable. You'll love it. Or also recoomend Baci in Westwood - about 10 minutes form Paramus - also delicious italian food - ENJOY - this place is always crowded and it's a bit smaller so make a reservation - you can google it

Goat cheese at the supermarket?? help

I never cook with goat cheese, but i'm making a mexican recipe today that calls for it (as part of a filling). how do i find something half-way decent at a supermarket?? any recos?

Your Favorite Pasta Salad

don't get insulted, but this one uses bottled salad dressing (but it's DELICIOUS for this super simple dish). Saute zucchini and squash sliches/haved in a pan w. Seven Seas Italians dressing (the most basic but surprisingly versitile marinade of them all). Once they get soft, remove them, mix into big bowl w. corkscrew pasta salad (tri-color), and possibly ad halved grape tomatoes. great to eat right away but the next day is even better.

Apr 21, 2007
heidemarie in Home Cooking