Monday, September 30, 2013

Event Recap: 4th Annual Hamilton Park BBQ

This past Saturday was the 4th Annual Hamilton Park BBQ. There was live music, beer, games, and of course, a lot of BBQ!

BBQ vendors included Dinosaur BBQ, Soul Flavors, Union Republic, Delaney Barbecue, and Jimmy's Barbecue from Pennsylvania and everything was priced around 7-10 dollars. Desserts included Andy's Italian Ice Truck, Torico Ice Cream, and Sophie Sophia with drinks being provided by NJ Beer Co. in conjunction with the Hamilton Inn and Lizzmonade!


I got there a little after 6pm and the crowd seemed like it was in full-swing. The lines for Dinosaur BBQ were really long and they didn't diminish until the very end of the night. Unfortunately, shortly after I got there, Soul Flavors started packing up so I'm not really sure what they had on offer, but there were plenty of other options to choose from.

Sunday, September 29, 2013

Community News

Iron Monkey Kicks Off October!

On Saturday, Oct. 5th and Sunday, Oct. 6th, Iron Monkey will be hosting a fun-filled weekend of pumpkin events and seasonal activities including pumpkin painting, carving, giveaways and drink specials!

Thursday, September 26, 2013

The 4th Annual Hamilton Park BBQ Festival

On Saturday, Hamiltion Park will hold it's 4th Annual BBQ Festival from 12 pm to 8pm!

The festival is a family-friendly event with live music, games, drinks, crafts from Not Yo Mama's Craft Fair, and of course, BBQ!

Tuesday, September 24, 2013

Fun Stuff in Jersey City Tonight!

Thanks to Twitter, today I saw the announcement of two cool things in Jersey City tonight. Plus, I belatedly remembered an event that I read about but forgot to include in my Community News (sorry):

1) Not only is it Wine and Mussel Night at Park and Sixth, but it's also National Cheeseburger Day so they'll be offering a free draft beer with any burger.

Monday, September 23, 2013

Event Recap: The All About Downtown Street Fair

This year's All About Downtown Street Fair had gorgeous weather, vendors from all around Jersey City, and tons of people in attendance. It was a great day with plenty to do, see, eat, drink, and enjoy!

The food trucks were a big hit and every time I passed by, I saw people lining up and looking at menus. I tried a carnitas taco from the El Paso truck which was there in stand form. It was delicious - great amount of pork, perfectly cooked tortilla, plenty of lime, cilantro and onion.

There was a mix of NYC and NJ and specifically Jersey City food vendors all throughout the fair which I was very happy to see. While it was fun to have the NY trucks around, I'm really glad the organizers brought in so many local options and businesses as well - after all, the fair is about Downtown so it deserves to be well represented. 

Sunday, September 22, 2013

Community News

Friday, September 20, 2013

Reminder: 3rd Annual All About Downtown Street Fair

Just a reminder, tomorrow (Saturday, Sept. 20th) is the 3rd Annual All About Downtown Street Fair. There will be live music, crafts, face-painting, art, food, and beer for everyone to enjoy!

The White Meat Side of White Star

In the interest of full disclosure, I did not actually consume either of these chicken sandwiches at White Star that I'm about to talk about but I was there during the consumption and discussed them at length. I had a burger but I feel I covered those pretty well in my White Star delivery post so no need to rehash. It was still good, juicy and flavorful although once I saw the chicken sandwiches, I did experience some regret at not ordering one myself.

Wednesday, September 18, 2013

Two Aprons: A not-quite-hidden gem

Two Aprons is a small cafe with a Mediterranean-inspired menu that serves everything from croissants to a turkish cheese sandwich to hormone and antibiotic free rotisserie chickens you can take home.

The store is on Warren Street, a tiny space with a table inside, sometimes one or two outside and a tempting display case of the day's pastries. They have their menu written on the walls for those who need to ponder and with so many delicious sounding options, I definitely needed some time. For breakfast, there are the afore-mentioned pastries, yogurt parfaits, and bagels while the rest of the extensive menu is made up of a wide variety of sandwiches including wraps and paninis, salads, and sides; many of which I was happy to see were vegetarian. While reading the menu, I was intrigued by the fact that the Mediterranean influence is seen in just about every item I saw - even if it was just in the form of an ingredient or the way the ingredients were put together, creating a slight twist on some of the more "classic" menu options.

Sunday, September 15, 2013

Community News

Saturday, September 14, 2013

Football Sundays

It's Football Season and Sundays are now dedicated to the watching of NFL games throughout the country and the best place to do that is in a bar with large TVs that will serve you beer and food.

Here's a quick round-up of some local places around Jersey City to watch football and Sunday Specials they are running. These aren't reviews or recommendations (coming later), just information:

Friday, September 13, 2013

6th Borough Market

6th Borough Market - Jersey City, New Jersey

Don't forget, this Sunday is the premiere of the 6th Borough Market!

The 6th Borough Market is a family-friendly outdoors market that focuses on artisan and vintage crafts and goods. The organizers have been running a countdown on Facebook with focuses on some of the vendors that will be present and it looks like there will be something for everyone to enjoy.

Foodwise, there will be a number of vendors from all around Jersey City, including Jersey City Veggie Burgers, Roman Nose, Milk Sugar Love, ModCup, Choc-O-Pain, and more!  Come look around, shop, eat and help make this event a success. It's a great way to bring some focus to the creative side of Jersey City, to local artisans, and the downtown area.

The market will be held on Sunday from 11am-4pm at 1 McWilliams Place.

Sam a.m. Opens

During the past few months, Sam a.m. has been sharing pictures and info as work on their new cafe in the Paulus Hook neighborhood progressed. As they worked on menu items and showed off their coffee skills and got closer and closer to opening, I (and many others) watched all of this with growing excitement and hope. Over Labor Day weekend, it finally happened: Sam a.m. opened.

Here's what I don't like about Sam a.m.:
1) it's relatively small (although this is also part of the charm) so there will be crowding and wait issues.
2) I don't live in Paulus Hook so it's a bit out of the way for me.
Yeah, that's about it. Seriously.

The first time I walked in, I was immediately impressed with the space. There's lots of sunlight, gleaming copper, white walls, and warm wood and while it is small, there's still room to move around and more seating than I would have thought. It's cute without being cutesey and there's a definite charm to the place. A lot of that comes from the very friendly, enthusiastic staff. Considering how much time and work goes into opening a restaurant, I am amazed at how nice and how dedicated the entire team seems to be. They have a very small prep/kitchen area and yet seem to have the flow down pretty well. Everyone is happy to pitch in where needed and there's just this incredibly happy, welcoming vibe to the place.

Wednesday, September 11, 2013

The Fall Menu at Orale

Last week, Orale debuted their fall menu so I went to check it out. I was wondering if the fall menu would display more seasonally dependent ingredients, and it did to a degree, but it seemed like the idea was to bring in more typically fall flavors and create a slightly heartier menu and I would say they succeeded.

I decided to try a drink that seemed very appropriate for their new menu: the Otono (Autumn). Made with apple cider, tequila, citrus, clove syrup and topped with a sprinkle of cinnamon, it was very festive and indeed, autumnal. I didn't taste much citrus or clove but it was a good, very apple-y drink. One of my friends ordered the Marlee Ahumado (Smoky).It was basically a classic margarita with the addition of chile de arbol and grapefruit, rimmed in a chile/pepper salt which really upped the spicy/smoky factor. Be prepared for some heat if you order this even with the strong citrus as a counter. Another friend ordered the Nuestra Casta (the house margarita) and it's a classic, well-made version. I also tried the Granada which is a pomegranate margarita. It was very good, heavy on the pomegranate so it was fruity but not light.

My one complaint about all the drinks across the board is that they were a bit light on the tequila. I don't want to taste nothing but alcohol, but I do want to feel a little heat after every sip and I was really just tasting the juice. Price-wise, the drinks aren't outrageous. Specialty cocktails cost $10 and most margaritas come in at 7 or 8 dollars. They also serve beer, wine, sangria, specialty house-made non-alcoholic sodas (really good), and some classic cocktails with a Mexican twist. I love the variety and that they have something to appeal to everyone.

Sunday, September 8, 2013

Community News

Thursday, September 5, 2013

Sky Thai

As I mentioned a few weeks ago, I headed to Sky Thai to enjoy Restaurant Week but the regular menu ended up being too tempting. I'd never been to Sky Thai before despite having passed it numerous times and was pleasantly surprised by how spacious and colorful it was. It's well set-up for a couple or a small group of friends and there was some nice outdoor seating.  The seating inside was not overly comfortable, but it served its purpose. They had a long drink menu, filled with specialty/fruit juice based cocktails. The ones we tried were pretty good although definitely a little overly sweet for my taste, but creative and fun nevertheless.

We started with the thai "beef jerky" which was basically stir fried pieces of beef with crispy edges. It was tasty, flavorful with a nice chew to it, but I was expecting something a bit more unique based off the name. Still, it paired well with the sauce and the rice and I'd be open to ordering it again. The starter salad was pretty typical with a nice, refreshing ginger dressing and proved to be a solid choice.

Wednesday, September 4, 2013

Congratulations to Rustique Pizza!

Tomorrow, Rustique Pizza, in Hamilton Park on Jersey Avenue and 5th Street, will celebrate it's two year anniversary!  Congratulations to all of you!  While I haven't yet mentioned Rustique here, I've been there several times over the past couple of years and it's a great, intimate place for a friendly, relaxed, and tasty meal. The service is great, their brick oven is impressive, and the garlic spread is amazing.

Monday, September 2, 2013

Community News