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May 4, 2005 06:04 PM

Restaurant Suggestions in Monmouth County, NJ

  • b

Hello. I love hearing others restauarnt suggestions. I live in Monmouth County, and to get a feel for what we like.....Teak in Red Bank....Angelica's in Sea Bright......Brioso in Marlboro. I appreciate all suggestions and all cuisines. Thanks in advance for all of your posts!

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  1. Interesting that you mention Brioso. We used to go there but stopped when we ran into a major problem that was handled badly by the staff and management.

    Fortunately, we've found an excellent substitute -- SamVera, on Route 520, which is now our favorite Italian restaurant in this area. The food is consistenly well-prepared and delicious. Service is pleasant and efficient. The small main dining room has attractive decor and very comfortable seating. They have a liquor license.

    6 Replies
    1. re: RGR

      RGR, I was wondering if you'd care to tell us what you've ordered at Sam Vera. I have driven past many times, and have heard that it is very good, but have never heard anything about the food in particular. I would greatly appreciate it. Thanks!

      1. re: Drew

        Drew, SamVera's cuisine is not cutting edge; however, it's very solidly prepared, delicious traditional Italian. In line with the way Italians in Italy eat, pasta is a separate course, and main course accompaniments are vegetables.

        Our favorite appetizer is the cold antipasti platter -- a nice assortment of meats, cheeses, roasted vegetables, and olives. Mozzarella with tomatoes and roasted peppers is also very good, but we order it only during the summer when tomatoes are in season. And we stick with the domestic mozzarella, though they do offer the imported "bufalo" at a significantly higher cost.

        My favorite main course is veal or shrimp picatta. I also like the whole grilled branzino and the lamb chops. My husband often orders the veal chop and also likes the pappardelle Bolognese. An excellent lasagna was a special one evening though, if you ask in advance, they are very accommodating and the kitchen will prepare it or anything you would like to have that is not on the menu.

        For dessert, I like the cannoli, the Italian cheesecake, and the tiramisu. My husband's first choice is the tartuffo.

        If you go to SamVera, I have every confidence that no matter what you order, you will not be disappointed.

        1. re: RGR

          RGR...we have not been to Brioso in quite some time now due to the fact of the same dishes over & over. I know there is not that much to change in Italian cuisine, but last time we were there, the baked clams were bad, too fishy tasting, my black linguine with seafood tasted SO FISHY I had no choice but to send it back. My husband had a bland chicken dish that was swimming in white wine. So, although I did put down Brioso, I have not been there in 5 months.

          I agree with you on Sam Vera. I love the place! It is so beautiful outside and in! You should definately try Angelicas in Sea Bright...I think you would really like it. It is on Ocean Ave. The website is

          Thanks everyone! I love the posts! Have a great weekend!

          1. re: RGR

            Hm.. Well ... I can never find a decent italian restaurant around the manalapan/marlboro area. Briosos is the only one I think is worth going to. I grew up with neopolitan cooking and live in my house in italy every year for a month or so..

            briosos is more neopolitan style cooking. I like this the best since i am neopolitan

            Therfeore, I KNOW what is good and HOW neopolitan food SHOULD taste. I love briosos. But there are obviously others that are better. However, it is the closest italian place that I like.

            I never tried SamVera. They probably offer more of italian-american dishes which i cannot eat too much of.

            try the gnocchi at briosos.
            my zio makes it better, but it's up there.

            1. re: Sogno56

              Brioso had it's day many years ago. I have written that place off for quite some time now. Service is rude, unless you dine there 5 nights a week, then the staff will kiss your a**.

              You should definately try Piccola Italia in Ocean Township. this place good!! If you do a search on this board, you will find so many people who enjoy it. I am SO HAPPY I found this place and I can thank the people who post here!


              It really stinks that in our area, there is zilch! I like Marmara, but everything else is blah!

          2. re: Drew

            Although Brioso has service that can be a bit rocky at times, I still prefer it to SamVera. I find SV overpriced for what you get, although the service and th eplace are always lovely. I do find Brioso's a bit better since they expanded. It seems to give a less hassled feel to the place.

        2. My current favorite is The Copper Canyon in Atlantic Highlands. Very good Southwestern food, as well being a wonderful Tequilla bar. Its a little hard to find as they have no sign, only a copper colored horseshoe on the front door. It is located in the Blue Bay Inn (I think thats the name) on First Ave. just off of Highway 36.


          1 Reply
          1. re: Drew
            Joseph linkler

            Copper canyon is way overrated. Food only so so and the staff not the Least bit friendly. Waste of time driving there

          2. I like Barnicle Bill's in Rumson for burgers. Dorris and Ed's in Highlands for seafood. Piccola Italia in Ocean Township for BYOB Italian. Copper Canyon in A. Highlands (tied with Nicholas for my fave). And of coarse Nicholas for fine dining (bring your checkbook). Basil T's and Fron St Trottoria in Red Bank have good pizza. We don't go out to Southern or Western Monmouth all that much. I just reviewed Joe and Maggies in Long Branch - check it out.

            1 Reply
            1. re: Pete Sucato

              Piccola Italia is no longer a BYOB - they serve alcohol now

            2. I'm from Northern VA, but visit my inlaws in Colts Neck a couple times a year w/the kids. Yeah no one knows anything about Colts Neck. The inlaws love their favorite sushi place in Eatontown (I believe) called Little Tokyo. I had sushi 3 X's during my week long visit -- it was that good. They serve what I call tasty and very fresh designer sushi with different fish combinations. Thought I was going to hate the eel entrees I selected, but I desired more. Can't say enough how fresh the sushi was. After eating 16 pieces I was pleasantly full and content without the heavy weigh down rice feeling I get from cheapo places. My father inlaw informed me the new management has turned the place around. Go check them out.

              1 Reply
              1. re: janyva

                Thank you for your comments. There are several good sushi places in the area and you found one you especially enjoyed.

              2. have you tried trinity in keyport? we have been there three times and the food is excellent. service is very friendly and the the atmoshpere is beautiful. love the potato pizza at solo in freehold as well as mahzu for sushi.