Mehndi, Morristown: Getting My Goat, Pot Pie!

Mehndi, Morristown: Getting My Goat, Pot Pie!

We've all had naan, the flat,  steamy, pita-like, tandoor-oven-cooked bread, synonymous with Indian cuisine.  And chicken tikka masala - who hasn't had that?

Mehndi, one of a triumvirate of restaurants including SM 23 Bar & Lounge, and Ming II, operated by the successful Mehtani Restaurant Group in the Morristown Hyatt, creates a total dining experience - including the possibility of a henna tattoo on Saturdays.  

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Escape, Innovative Farm Dining, Opens in Montclair

Escape, Innovative Farm Dining, Opens in Montclair

A rectangular blackboard hangs on an exposed brick wall in the dining room of Escape.  It's a bill of fare, of sorts; a white chalk roster of New Jersey farmers and artisans from which chef and owner, Bryan Gregg, sources proteins and produce. Gregg is source-centric. 

There's a gastronomic school of thought that says, "farm-to-table isn’t a trend - it’s the way it should be," and therefore food writers shouldn't be impressed with a chef  just because he uses farm fresh ingredients and local purveyors.  

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Little India: Mausam Indian Cuisine Opens in Montclair

Little India:  Mausam Indian Cuisine Opens in Montclair

Little India - that slope of Bloomfield Ave. in Montclair between Glenridge and North Willow Avenues - is sporting a new Indian restaurant.  Sankalp & Trusha Trivedi, owners of Mausam restaurant, bar and banquet facility in Secaucus, as well as the Curry N Bites food truck, have brought their successful brand of Indian cuisine to Montclair. 

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Nuevo Latin Cuisine at Mamajuana in Secaucus, NJ

Nuevo Latin Cuisine at Mamajuana in Secaucus, NJ

One-third through my first Coco Mojito, I became blind to the traffic zooming by on Route 3 East.  It’s safe to say, that if I were capable of only three senses – taste, smell and sound -  I might fancy myself somewhere in the Riviera Maya.  But I wasn’t in Playa del Carmen or Tulum, or some sexy South American city.  I was in Secaucus, NJ.


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Shanghainese & Taiwanese at Gourmet Chopsticks in Fairfield

It’s always fun to dine with fellow  "food geeks."  But it's especially fulfilling when those fellow gastronomes happen to be Rosie Saferstein and Jason Perlow, two pillars of the NJ food writing community, whose collective knowledge of cuisine is as broad as the globe itself.

We dined together at Gourmet Chopsticks in Fairfield, NJ.  Really? Not Ninety Acres? Not Elements? Not daryl? No.  Gourmet Chopsticks, formerly Hunan Cottage.  The restaurant came highly recommended from Rosie, and if she says it good – I’m going to give it a go!

Gourmet Chopsticks serves Taiwanese and Shanghai style cuisine.  What separates Shanghainese and Taiwanese cuisine?  Approximately 425 miles. The same distance between NYC and Akron, OH, or NYC and North Carolina. 

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