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Real Belly Fried Clams in NJ?

r
Rachel Perlow Aug 26, 1999 12:37 PM

I was looking through the listing of places to find
good belly fried clams in NYC, and wondered if anyone
new of any good places in NJ? Thanks.

  1. l
    Lauren Sep 17, 1999 11:06 PM

    Denville Fish Market right off Rte. 46. They've got
    the real deal, just make sure they don't overcook them.

    5 Replies
    1. re: Lauren
      j
      Jim Leff Sep 18, 1999 12:25 AM

      Rt. 46 is a long road...whereabouts is this place (and
      is anything else good there)?

      If Denville's a town in NJ, I might be about to feel
      really stupid...

      ciao

      1. re: Lauren
        r
        Rachel Perlow Sep 22, 1999 01:00 PM

        What a coincidence! Jason and I went to Denville
        Seafood for dinner the same night you wrote your
        follow-up, but I hadn't read your message yet!

        For those who don't know, here is a description of
        Denville Seafood: It is literally a fish market with
        about 6 tables to eat at (additional outside tables in
        fair weather). They buy their fish fresh every
        morning at Fulton Street Fish Market. If they run out
        of something, they're out! No running to the A&P to
        restock the shrimp or crab! (Jim - yes, Denville is a
        town in NJ, the store/restaurant is located at 61
        Broadway, 973-627-2987, no reservations, call to find
        out if they have what you are craving.)

        This is the only place in my area of NJ I would buy
        tuna or salmon to make sushi at home (including all
        the asian stores on Rt 46).

        Directions: take Rt 80 West (about 50 min from GWB) to
        Rt. 53/Denville exit, right out of exit, right at
        second light onto Broadway. Look for the green
        striped awning about 2 blocks down on right. Go to
        the Denville Dairy across the street for ice cream
        afterward. You can also take the train, the station
        is walking distance to Denville Seafood.

        This was our 3rd attempt to eat at Denville Seafood.
        First try we arrived around 7PM, totally packed, 45
        min wait. We left. Second time, didn't call first,
        they were closed. Third times the charm! We were
        both home early from work (this was the day after
        Hurricane Floyd), so at 5:30, I said "let's go to
        Denville Seafood, if we get there by 6 we should be
        able to get a table!"

        We arrived at 6:05 PM and snagged the last indoor
        table (there were tables set up outside and though it
        was a little chilly, I would have sat there if I had
        too). So we puruse the menu and, of course, want the
        belly clams, but they didn't have them that day! Oh
        well, "how 'bout some crab cakes?" asks Jason.
        Another waitress pipes in "I just sold the last two!"
        If they were out of shrimp, Jason would have walked
        out!

        Anyway we had soup - excellent Manhatten (cup $1.95,
        and took home a quart for $7.00) and not-too-creamy
        New England clam chowders (bowl $3.75)- and fried
        calimari (small portion but really excellent, very
        tender) ($6.95) for starters. Jason had the fried
        shrimp dinner ($13.95) and I had shrimp and fish cake
        combo (priced per item with a minimum of two items,
        mine came to $9.90). The shrimp were pretty good and
        the fish cake was excellent. Very little binder used,
        which gives me hope for the crab cakes when next we go
        there.

        Speaking of next time, as they can so easily run out
        of the most popular items, I think my plan is as
        follows: go for lunch, and take home some fresh fish
        to make sushi for dinner that night!

        1. re: Rachel Perlow
          j
          Jim Leff Sep 22, 1999 04:23 PM

          thanks for the detailed info, Rachel.

          So you guys really think it's worth the ride out from
          da city, huh? It seems like a long ride in the wrong
          direction for seafood, y'know?

          JIM

          1. re: Jim Leff
            r
            Rachel Perlow Sep 23, 1999 10:56 PM

            Not necessarily worth a ride out from the city, but I
            thought I'd give the directions from there as a
            reference point (so the city folk have an idea where
            Denville is ;> ) Personally, we only drive about 15
            minutes to get there, and as there is NO fish store
            closer than this in my area (other than the
            supermarkets or North American Lobster Co on Rt 46
            (which is more like a 25 minutes drive)), it's worth
            it to me.

            Followup on directions: When you get off 80W, it puts
            you on Rt 46W, take the 2nd Rt 53 exit (towards
            Denville), which comes up almost immediately, and
            continue as per previous post.

            Followup on food: We went there for lunch today as we
            were working from home. Jay had Shrimp Bisque which
            was good, but too creamy for me. We both had fried
            sea scallops & a crabcake. The scallops were
            excellent. The crabcake tasted good and fresh and
            slightly spicy, but unfortunately, had a little too
            much binding breading - unlike the fishcakes as per
            previous post.

            Rachel

            1. re: Rachel Perlow
              l
              Lauren Oct 17, 1999 06:30 PM

              It's a fried clam revolution!! Glad you like Denville Fish Market, Rachel. Jim, don't drive from NY. I grew up around the corner, that's how I know about it. Go if you're headed west for some reason, bu t not on Mondays because it's closed. Good homemade tarter sauce, too.

      2. b
        bluefrog Aug 26, 1999 09:15 PM

        Not Jersey, but there is Bigelow's in Rockville Centre on Long Island (no atmosphere, paper plates, stools around the counter -- and absolutely fresh fish and clams).

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