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Italian Food in Red Bank, NJ - Dining in Lakehurst & Ft. Dix area too..

I'm going to be traveling out to New Jersey on business and will be in the Fort Monmouth, Lake Hurst and Ft. Dix areas. I'm hopefully going to be staying in Red Bank and am looking for reccomendations on dining? I'm primarily interested in Italian food but am open for suggestion. I live in Portland, OR and am looking for some good NJ cooking. Any reccomendations are appreciated. Thanks!

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  1. If you're at all interested in upscale dining, Nicholas, one of the best restaurants in the entire state, is located in Middletown, just over the bridge into Red Bank. Superb New American cuisine. An excellent wine list. Very cordial, yet polished service. Elegant contemporary decor. You can eat in the formal dining room or at the bar in the separate, spacious bar room. Highly recommended!

    http://www.restaurantnicholas.com

    There are quite a few Italian restaurants in Red Bank. Gaetano's is the one we have gone to most often though not recently.

    http://www.gaetanosredbank.com/

    (Note: Sogno and Osteria Dante are two Italian restaurants there that I avoid like the proverbial plague.

    )

    Dish, in Red Bank, serves very good New American.

    http://www.dishredbank.com

    The Bistro at Red Bank serves good eclectic fare.

    http://www.thebistroatredbank.com

    Le Fandy, in Fair Haven, a very quick ride from from Red Bank, serve excellent Modern French cuisine.

    http://www.lefandybistro.com

    Far East Taste, in Eatontown, also a few minutes from Red Bank, serves the chef/owner's conception of Thai, Malaysian and Chinese cuisines. The place is seriously decor-deficient, but diners ignore that because the food is so good.

    1. Work for the militarty? Me too!
      When your at Ft Monmouth, try Rosina's in Shreswbury for lunch. Right off of Shrewsbury Ave. Very nice Italian place and all luches are around $8.
      Good luck in Lakehurst, there's not much there. I used to work in Hanger 5. There's a decent diner outside the base , but I don't remember the name. On Rt 70.
      I can't help you with Dix.

      4 Replies
      1. re: Jen_in_NJ

        Work with the military - IT space, you? Anyhow, thanks for the reccomendations. Probably check out Rosina's for lunch.

        1. re: mcattrone

          IT SATCOM! I work for a local defense contractor-L3. Was a network admin for many years, now I do IAVA compliance

          1. re: Jen_in_NJ

            Hey guys just back from the same general area on business trip...did the same thing ...checked the midatlantic board...and a member named BGT1 recommended a place called Bistro44 in Toms River...I tried it last night and was glad I did ...very good...the whole BYOB thing was foreign to me...but actually it works in favor of your pocketbook. Try a search fof Toms River for more.

        2. re: Jen_in_NJ

          Also in Shrewsbury, on Apple St., a block away from Rosina's, is Mumfords, probably the best choice, and a new place, The Back Door.

        3. RGR's recommendations are excellent. I would add the Front Street Trattoria (Italian on West Front Street), Thyme Square ("New American"? on Broad Street) and Juanitos (Mexican on Monmouth Street). As for Lakehurst, good luck. Other than the diner mentioned above and an Italian place on Rt. 70 called the La Gondola (only had a pizza there and it was decent) there is nothing much to speak of. Not far going east on Rt. 70 is a Charlie Browns which is OK for a burger/sandwich/beer.

          2 Replies
          1. re: RobertinRedBank

            The name of the diner on Route 70 is the Manchester Diner...had lunch there several months ago and the food and service were very good. I had a grilled chicken caesar salad and when I asked for some bread, they brought me a basket of soft, warm pita bread...nice surprise. :)

            1. re: MartiniQueen

              Actually its named the Lakehurst Diner MQueen. Went by it yesterday. I'm going to have to finally try it after passing it twice a month for the last 20 years or so on my way to visit my mother.

          2. I'm sure someone can help me out here, but I heard that there's a good German place near Ft. Dix (?) Other than that, I don't recall anything much near there.

            And, everyone forgot Piancone's in Bradley Beach. I know lots of people who go there everytime they have to travel to the Eatontown area.

            http://www.piancone.com/

            2 Replies
            1. re: alielle

              Is the German restaurant's name called Sebastian's Schnitzel Haus in Wrightstown, NJ?

              1. re: wench31

                Sebastians is the German place on Dix Street (the main street) in Wrightstown. Its OK german - - they do a pretty good wurst platter. BYO beer - - there's a liquor store just up the street. Everything else in Wrightstown is fast food. In Lakehurst, a cheeseburger at Lakehurst diner may be the best bet. There is an italian restaurant right on main street Lakehurst just south of Route 37. Its good if you don't get too ambitious. If you head east a few miles out of Lakehurst on Route 37, the Java Moon cafe is a great place for sandwiches or a full dinner. Great desserts and coffee too.

            2. Having lived or worked in all those areas, there is much to tell but will cut it down to the best. Lakehurst, La Gondola serves very good lunches/dinners. About 2 miles east on Rt 37 (toward the beach) is Ruby Tuesday's with a great salad bar, into Toms River along the same road, find the intersection of Rt 166, make a jughandle left, go up about 3 miles to Il Giardenello, the best Italian food anywhere in the county (and I have lived in Europe). Red Bank, Thyme Square and a nifty little place called The Pour House on Shrewsbury Ave, very near Ft Monmouth, have American style with pizzazz.
              I'm another former DOD employee. Around Ft Dix, let someone direct you to Mastoris Diner in nearby Bordentown and be ready to bring home half of what you order. But the best in that area is to drive up to nearby Trenton for excellent Italian food almost anywhere you go there. Enjoy.

              2 Replies
              1. re: omadthenomad

                I can't and don't want to debate your local knowledge. But, I just recently traveled for business in the local area and enjoyed Bistro 44's in downtown Tom's River alot...and your other recs may be good...but Ruby Tuesday.....that sets my chain alarm off big time.

                1. re: omadthenomad

                  "....Il Giardenello, the best Italian food anywhere in the county." <--I haven't been there in a while but I agree - it was outstanding. But last night we decided to try Rosina's in Shrewsbury due to recommendations here and thru boorah. We were expecting an upscale pizzeria/diner type place but it was like a fancy restaurant - cloth napkins, waiters in vests. I am glad we decided to bring our own wine - every table had some - and the place just had so much elegance and atmosphere to be without.We ordered a side of broccoli rabe w/ sausage as appetizer <-- the best we ever had. We had pasta - dishes were $15 appx. and were very good. Skip desert - nothing original there.

                2. Where at Dix? If on main post, there are a number of places just outside the Wrightstown gate, but I don't think any of them are any more than an average lunchtime location. If you are by Range 1, plenty of places in New Egypt for lunch, and there's a place a little east on 528, Cookstown Inn I think, that got good reviews here a couple months ago.

                  In the Red Bank area there are plenty of very good places to pick from. The suggestions made so far are only the tip of the iceberg.

                  1. Unfortunately, there’s not much around Ft. Dix. The places that do come to mind are:

                    Anapa’s Country House in Pemberton, NJ. I haven’t been there in years but it use to be very good. I don’t think they have a website. They’re located at 122 S Pemberton Rd
                    Pemberton, NJ 08068 (609) 894-2700‎.

                    The Plumsted Grill on Rt. 539 in Cream Ridge, NJ is good but basic American fare. See http://www.plumstedgrill.com/.

                    The Chesterfield Inn in Chesterfield, NJ is excellent with a Cajun/Creole and Italian mix. http://www.thechesterfieldinn.com.

                    The Olde Columbus Inn in Columbus, NJ is also very good for American fare. http://www.oldecolumbusinne.com.

                    1. I worked at Lakehurst for about 20 years. Since you are staying in Red Bank you'll probably only be doing lunch there. La Gondola is good for Italian. Luigi's' is fine too and they have a liquor license. The Lakehurst Diner is OK but for home cooking Sandy's Cozy Corner on Route 70 across the road and a little west is much better. I guess the moldy pie I was served at the Lakehurst Diner goes so many years back it doesn't matter now, but I'll never forget it. I wrote about Sebastian's, outside Fort Dix, here http://www.chowhound.com/topics/497674

                      1. Note the date. The original post is a year old, so I don't think he needs our advice any more. :)

                        1 Reply
                        1. re: cantkick

                          WOW SMART EYES CANTKICK!!! DIDN'T EVEN REALIZE THE 07 BEFORE RESPONDING...

                        2. try siena grille for good italian fare in red bank. it is located on the intersection of herbert st and shrewsbury ave