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Flemington area eats

Hi all - Just moved to Flemington and am looking for some local recs. Think Flemington north up 202 to Somerville - Im already all scoped out on Lambertville / New Hope etc area. Ive been to several of the local places - Red Rooster & Blue Fish grill were both excellent, California Grill was above average, Union Hotel was, at least food wise, sub-par. Id love to find a good local Sushi place, Indian place & Pizza place above all. Oishi in Newtown PA was my go to sushi spot until the move - Im hopeful there is somethoing of that quality nearby? Is that wishful thinking??

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  1. We have eaten at Viva Mexico at 117 Broad Street, Flemington and their food is just delicious. Authentic mexican!!


    Another one, but, haven't been there in over a year is Il Mulino on Fulper Road. They have very good food. They don't have a website, but, here is a link to a map and some other posters experiences.


    Another one is Max's Bristro right on Main Street. We have eaten there many times and every time the food was delicious. Again, no website, but, here's more information for you.


    For great BBQ you should go to Ol' West BBQ on Rt 31 in Annandale. We went a few months ago and the food was great.



    For Asian and Indian there is a new place on Main Street called Fusion that I've heard really good things about.


    Here is a link that will give you all the discussions on restaurants in Flemington that we have had here on the Mid-Atlantic board.

    Hope this helps you out somewhat.

    1 Reply
    1. re: nizza

      Have to differ about Ol' West BBQ. On our one visit there - the service was awful (a bunch of unsupervised kids) and the food was worse. Limp greasy disgusting fries and we don't even want to talk about the ribs or the pulled pork. Oh, and the "coleslaw" we were served clearly came out of a gigantic commercial bucket and to add insult to injury, it was brown around the edges. Unbelievable. I would never go back there.

      Viva Mexico - we were so happy with this place when it first opened. But we have been a few times since and now we think it's not so much. It's seriously slipped.

      It's a bit of a drive, but the R.U.B. Hut in Manville is light years better than Ol' West.

    2. Since you're willing to go as far north (east?) as Somerville, Shumi on Doughty Street is my pick for sushi. Put yourself in chef Ike's hands for an omakase experience. That's how I developed my love of monkfish liver.

      In the other direction, Cocina del Sol in a basement on Bridge St in Frenchtown puts down good and hearty southwest offerings.

      1. Welcome to Flemington, Howchound. Things have gotten much better foodwise around here in the last few years but that's not necessarily saying all that much.

        That said, there a few really good places. You've already found some of them. The Harvest Moon in Ringoes is very good. It's located in a beautiful stone house and they have both a tavern room and more formal dining rooms. In the tavern you can order off of either the tavern menu or the dining room menu which is nice, because the prices in the dining room are higher, but the food is more complex.


        I know you were asking for recs from Flemington North up 202, but the Sergeantsville Inn gets good reviews. We haven't been there in a while but our last experience was a very good one.

        Pizza - that's a tough one. There are so many pizza places in Flemington. The only one we regularly go to is Joe's located over by the Shop Rite (I forget the name of the road right now - Commerce St.? ) It's across from the Dutch Country Market (which also harbors a few chowhound worthy items.) For really excellent pizza, go to DeLucia's in Raritan (First Avenue ).

        Breakfast - Moms in Ringoes or Canyon Creek Grill in Kingwood are both very good. (Moms does great pancakes and egg dishes. Avoid the french toast at all costs. Canyon Creek also does eggs well, great waffles, good pancakes.


        Cannela's in Turntable Junction (across the green from Bluefish) serves Puerto Rican food. They just opened so they're still finding their feet, but the empanadas are delicious.

        And BTW, I agree with you about Cali Grill and the Union Hotel.

        1 Reply
        1. re: flourgirl

          I just had to add a footnote here. We had dinner in the tavern room at the Harvest Moon last night and it was seriously disappointing. (We haven't eaten in the tavern room in a long time.) My husband and son both ordered pasta dishes, which turned out to be ridiculously small portions, (and not inexpensive I might add.) Both son and DH were disappointed by their choices. My husband said that he's had better in many pizza restaurants and that his salad was terrible. (My salad was terrific, an arugula salad with crispy duck confit, croutons and a lemony ceaser salad type dressing). I also ordered a personal pizza, which I wasn't very happy with because the crust was awful. Very bready and thick. Yuck.

          My husband also asked for some more bread after he received his pasta dish. (We all were served exactly one roll upon being seated.) I swear, the server looked at him like he had just asked her to take off her shirt instead. Then she mumbled that "sure, but I'm going to have to heat it up." She finally came back with the roll after my husband had already finished his meal. And the thing she dropped on his bread dish was rock hard and so dark brown it was almost black. Unbelievable.

          And I have to say if it wasn't for the fact that a portion of our meal was covered by the remainder of a gift certificate we received a while ago we would have been seriously angry by the size of the bill after the overall disappointing experience we had. Bottom line, the value just wasn't there. The quality of the food was sub par, the prices have increased and the portions have decreased. I doubt we'll be going back anytime soon.

        2. Wow, Flourgirl sorry to hear about Ol' West BBQ. It was really good when we went,but, that was several months ago.

          Terrible to hear about Viva Mexico it's been awhile since we were there, but, the couple of times the food was great. I've heard that they opened another place on Main St and maybe they are spread too thin now.

          1 Reply
          1. re: nizza

            I know - we were bummed after our experience at Ol' West. You know how it is, lots of times you go out to eat, and the meals OK... nothing to write home about, but OK. But our experience was so bad at Ol' West that we were actually angry because we felt ripped off.

            Viva Mexico - That's interesting - I didn't know that the same people owned both places. We've never tried the one on Main but were planning to. Well, I guess we'll give it at least one try and see how it is anyway. And yes, we were disappointed that the food wasn't as good the last two times we went as when we first started going. (Although, I will say, I still like their chicken tamales. I love tamales...)

            We've gone a couple of times to that Mexican place in Lambertville - I think it's Tortuga's Mexican Cantina? I think the food there is much better than Viva Mexico. I don't think it is particularly authentic, but the food is prepared well, and it's tasty.

          2. Howchound, welcome to the Flemington area. I hope you'll keep coming back here and post your comments about local, and maybe not so local, restaurants. There aren't many of us hounds here in Hunterdon County!

            Where to begin? First, I agree that for the best sushi you should go to Shumi in Somerville. Some consider this the best sushi joint in the state. If it's not as good as your go to place in Newtown, then you've got a problem. I'm told there is also a decent sushi place on Main Street in Clinton but I have no first hand knowledge of it.

            For pizza, you're probably better off trekking to Trenton. However, a lot of people in the area like Angelo's, which is in a strip mall on Route 31N, just north of the Flemington Circle. Others like Pizza Como in Clinton, which has been around forever.

            You've already tried some restaurants in the vicinity and for the most part I agree with the comments here. We go to the California Grill when we're feeling guilty and want only a salad. We've never been disappointed. As for the Union Hotel, this place has seen better days but if you sit outside it's great for people watching. We've learned to order only off the specials menu and for the most part the food has been fairly decent. However, you always get the same vegetables - cauliflower, carrots, squash - which I suspect come out of a bag.

            You should definitely try Il Mulino. I believe they currently offer alfresco dining and in the winter it's a very cozy spot to enjoy good Italian food. Also go to Fusion on Main and sample their take on Indian, Thai, Indonesian and Chinese food. But beware! This restaurant can be incredibly noisy on a weekend night. Go during the week or reserve a table outside (there aren't many of them). An often overlooked spot is Mangia Bene in the Ramada Inn on Route 31N, south of Flemington. We've always been pleased with the food there and it's almost worth going just to hear the manager (owner?) recite the specials. You'll see what I mean!

            For breakfast or lunch, I like the Market Roost in downtown Flemington. Quality is very high but it can be pricey. They are not open for dinner. The same is true of Teaberry's, also in town, which is a great spot for lunch and - guess what? - tea! While I think of it, there's a new place in Clinton, called the Fine Diner, which is said to offer great breakfasts and lunches.

            Somerville has so many good restaurants that it has become a destination town for many looking for great food. Between Flemington and Somerville, you should check out Alishaan, for Indian food, at 793 Highway 202E and Acqua, for Italian food, which is also on 202E, before the Somerville Circle. Acqua has very reasonable prices, great ambiance and extraordinary service (at least when I've been there). There's also a little hole in the wall place on Thompson Avenue, just off 202E, called Bosphorus. They serve Turkish food and it's great! Thompson Avenue comes up quickly just before the Somerville Circle.

            Hope this helps you. There are lots of other good restaurants in neighboring towns and along the PA side of the Delaware. You can search for these by town name or just keep monitoring this board for information. Enjoy!

            7 Replies
            1. re: ambrose

              Ambrose - have you been to Bosphorous lately? They have been closed for weeks (allegedly for electrical problems) and I'm thinking they may not be reopening. But I haven't checked in a couple of weeks. Maybe they reopened? I hope so - I love that place!

              And Mangia Bene? Really? I admit we've never tried it, but we have stayed at the Ramada after a friend's wedding and it was pretty horrible. I just can't wrap my head around the idea that the restaurant actually could have good food.

              1. re: flourgirl

                The news about Bosphorus is not good. It was indeed "temporarily closed", apparently because of electrial problems suffered during a particularly bad thunder storm. I remember seeing the sign on the door saying that they were waiting for some new equipment and/or parts.

                Well, I went by today and pasted to the front door is a warrant, dated July 20, instructing the tenant to vacate the premises within three days. Looks like the owner of the property had him evicted for some reason. I can only hope that the restaurant opens somewhere else. You don't find too many Turkish restaurants in this neck of the woods!

                As for Mangia Bene, it is not exactly a destination restaurant but we've always found the food very satisfying and the atmosphere to our liking. One caveat - if you're not careful, you can easily run up a bill equal to that at many of the better places in town. Choose carefully and you won't be disappointed.

                1. re: ambrose

                  That's too bad about Bosphorous. I hope they find a new space to open in - I've really been missing them.

                  1. re: flourgirl

                    Flourgirl, rumor has it that the people who ran Bosphorus will open a place "up near Bernardsville". This seems like a quantum leap in terms of location but that's what I was told.

                    1. re: ambrose

                      Rats - if this is true, it's a little too out of the way for me these days. Oh well.

                      1. re: flourgirl

                        Was just perusing the Tri-State board and noticed that there is a place in Randolph called Bosphorus. It serves Turkish food and I'm thinking it may be the restaurant displaced from Somerville/Bridgewater. Will have to check it out if I'm ever in that area.

                        1. re: ambrose

                          Thanks for the heads up ambrose, I appreciate it. Unfortunately I'm never in Randolph. Sigh.

                          If you do get around to checking out the restaurant, I'd still be interested to hear if it was the same owners. What a shame we lost such a great little place though.

            2. My mother lives near Flemington! These are her comments:

              Frenchtown Cafe for breakfast and lunches -- always a line right out the door on weekends, though. (Good homemade food and fantastic wait-staff.) Harvest Inn (Ringoes) and Perryville Inn (off of I-78) 3 miles west of Clinton) are pricey, but truly gourmet and both 4-stars. New Italian restaurant just on the border of Flemington on Church St. and Hwy. 31 is "Capo" (excellant) and their pizza looks great. California Cafe serves up humungous salads that are very creative and very, very fresh. They're also known for their Kobe beef burgers and their individual pizzas.
              They're located at the juncture of Hwy. 31 and the Flemington Circle.
              Yes, Cucina del Sol in Frenchtown is truly remarkable for their Southwestern and Mexican food. Outstanding and authentic!!!

              1 Reply
              1. re: Jill Brazil

                Cucina del Sol is pretty good - I love their black bean soup. Yum. But I'm not crazy about the seasoning they use in any dish that contains chopped beef. At least the last time we were there (which was admittedly a fairly long time ago) the seasoning was very sweet - I thought it was kind of strange. Maybe it's time to give them another try though.

              2. The Grand Colonial, (owned by the same people who own The Perryville Inn), is great. The Tewksbury Inn is my favorite in that area. Get the Ahi Tuna, amazing.

                Frenchtown has a great catering company- DISH caterers who are a great place to go for lunch.

                I would encourage you to explore downtown Clinton which is adorable. Can't think of restaurants, but it's so quaint and there is a great little teashop I used to frequent.

                The Ryland Inn is a must. All organic herbs and produce from their own garden.

                If you find yourself in the Bridgewater area, Somerville has many excellent restaurants. Shumi is excellent for traditional sushi if you put yourself at the mercy of the sushi chef. Wasabi Asian Plates is a favorite for their sushi if you like more splashy rolls and they have an extensive menu for Asian food otherwise. La Scala is my favorite old-school Italian. Verve is wonderful for their New American. Origin is a French Thai restaurant which is highly recommended.

                6 Replies
                1. re: gottasay

                  Unfortunately, the Ryland Inn has been closed for months. The web site claims that they will be reopening after Labor Day. I guess we'll see.

                  1. re: flourgirl

                    If Craig Shelton is to be believed, this is a very optimistic reopening date. See the following article from NJ Monthly Magazine:


                    1. re: ambrose

                      I was never actually a big fan of the Ryland Inn. Went a few times with family and the overzealous service actually got on my nerves, among other things.

                      1. re: flourgirl

                        I have friends who feel similarly about the place. I obviously haven't been in awhile, I had no idea they closed! I really would like to take a cooking class or two with Craig.

                  2. re: gottasay

                    I believe the owners of The Perryville Inn sold their interest in The Grand Colonial some time ago. I too love The Tewkesbury Inn in Oldwick but I understand it is under new management (and ownership?). I don't know if things remain the same but I do know they now take reservations.

                    In Clinton, I would have dinner only at Dora on the main street or at The Clinton House. At the latter restaurant, we always order from the specials menu. The rest of the menu is pricey and the value isn't there. The sauerbrauten is possibly the best I've had outside Germany. Stay away from the Old River House at dinner (it's awful) but go for breakfast or lunch.

                    1. re: ambrose

                      Interesting. Now that you mention it, the last time I was at the Grand Colonial, I wondered where Lorraine was- she used to interact so much with the tables. So I guess it is primarily the Dallas boys running things now.

                      Yes, the Tewksbury Inn has new management/owners but things are still absolutely excellent. Chef Chris Quintile is the best. Don't care for the new dining room decor, but the bar room is the place to be anyway.

                      However, if you like The Tewksbury Inn, I highly recommend Verve in Somerville as well. Again, the owner and service is consistently excellent and food is superb. The upstairs lounge is a great place for drinks as well.

                      Another one in the Flemington area is the Fox & Hound in Lebanon. Cozy, lowkey, the food can't beat the Tewks, but is a lovely spot and the owners are always present and wonderful.

                  3. Welcome to the Flemington area and the challenge of finding chowhound worthy food in your own backyard.

                    The Grill at the Pittstown Inn on Pittstown Road, in Pittstown has my favorite bar to sit and eat at. When it was first reopened after the big restoration and Jonas Gold was in the kitchen, the food really rocked. He has magic hands, I swear. Subsequent chefs have produced good food, and it remains one of my favorite places, but mostly to sit at the bar and have a drink and a burger.

                    I hear Jonas will be opening his own place 55 Main on Main St in Flemington. There's brown paper covering the windows and construction permits, so I guess it won't be long.

                    2 Replies
                    1. re: pfarrell

                      You'll be glad to know that 55 Main is open. The restaurant is open for dinner Wednesday to Saturday and for lunch Monday to Saturday.


                      1. re: ambrose

                        Thanks for posting this ambrose - another gotta try.

                    2. Azteca Huarache.
                      Main Street Flemington
                      Try the tacos asada and the ceviche.
                      There unfortunately both on point so I can't tell you much about the rest of the menu.
                      Not sure if its authentic, but it its damn good.

                      1. My wife and I have not tried Viva Mexico, but we have tried 5 de Mayo (cinco de mayo) in Lambertville (two doors down from Siam) and we both heartily recommend it. The food tastes fresh and authentic -- but don't expect glamor here. We ate outdoors and the tables were of the plastic resin variety -- which isn't a problem in and of itself. Just don't go there thinking it's all that fancy.

                        1. This is my first post about a restaurant, ever. I ate at Market Roost a few weekends ago, and the taste still lingers! My wife and I brought two of her friends from India, and everyone had a similar impression: that Sunday brunch was the best restaurant experience we've had in a long time.

                          We had the Kahlua French Toast, Chipped Beef, Country Ham Bake with Anjou Pear, and Fresh Pineapple and Corn Fritters. We each shared a taste from all of the dishes, and everyone envied everyone else's dish. The dishes were balanced, simple, yet original, and the presentation, very clean.

                          The decor is country home, full of lamps, dishes and sundry for the house for sale around the tables, and the service is as outstanding as the food. The owner, Carol, was very personable and attentive. I understand they have been voted the best Brunch in NJ, and I don't have a hard time believing it!

                          We drove from New Brunswick, and we'll be driving back again soon.

                          1 Reply
                          1. re: robertkennedy44

                            T'aint nowhere better in these here parts for a great breakfast, brunch or lunch any day of the week. We've had Carol cater some of our parties, too, and every dish received a rave.

                          2. For Breakfast, the only place to go is Country Skillet. I think that is the name. It is on Route 31??? Or is it 202. It is somewhere over there. When I am coming from Oxford, we go up 31 North and then we pass the circle. It is right near the Circle. Excellent breakfast AND lunch. No doubt.

                            Pizza, I have no idea. I never eat Pizza in that area. I haven't had any sushi over there either.

                            1 Reply
                            1. re: RisaG

                              The place you're thinking of is the Country Griddle. It's on both Route 31S and Route 202S! These two highways run together south of Flemington until Route 31 branches off to the east. The restaurant is just south of the Flemington Circle and is a little hard to get to if you're coming north. You have to go around the circle and then head back south for about 100 yards.

                              I too like this place for breakfast and lunch. Service is always very quick and very friendly. If I have a complaint, it's that the staff can get a little behind if it's really busy. Taking orders and getting food to the customer seems to be #1 priority while cleaning/clearing tables seems to be about #5. The floors under the tables can get messy too. That said, I often go there on a weekday for breakfast.

                              Earlier this year, NJ Monthly mentioned Country Griddle as one of the better diners in the state. Surprisingly - at least to me - they also mentioned J&S Restaurant, which is on the other side of Route 31 near Linens 'n Things. I've been there a couple of times and while the food and service are good, I've never seen more than ten people in the place.

                            2. Crossroads, which used to be Etzels, on 579 and Rte. 12, is a secret gem. Atmosphere is zero, but it is now owned by two ambitious women who make everything from scratch, including bread and the world's best potato chips. I've only been there for lunch, but it's the best lunch in town.

                              Another good one for lunch is Buddy's, on Main St. Again, he really cooks, and the prices are good. Atmosphere -- perhaps a two outta ten, but the warmth of the workers there compensates.

                              Have you discovered the Cafe in Rosemont, and Miels in Stockton? Both are lovely places with good food, country atmosphere.

                              Azteca Huarache on Main St. for the Cubano sandwich -- one of the best I've ever had.

                              Guess I'm more of a lunch then fancy dinner person. I haven't been to California Grill since the owners have changed, but found their salads boring, and made with bottled dressing. Their flatbread pizzas were great, however, for a quick, light meal.

                              The Ryland Inn is long gone -- closed for a year, and sold last week in foreclosure to a bank.

                              1 Reply
                              1. re: pitterpatter

                                For a fancy dinner, at least a few years ago, very pleased with Harvest Moon Inn a bit down 202 in Ringoes.

                              2. The FULL MOON in Lambertville is by far the best breakfast place - a little pricier, but well worth it. The food is excellent and the staff are great. They are also open for dinner once a month on the actual full moon and the food for dinner is also excellent - plus if it's your birthday the meal is on the house! We LOVE that place.

                                4 Replies
                                1. re: kayrock

                                  I love the Full Moon for lunch but in terms of quality I would rank the Market Roost and Teaberry's in Flemington higher. Teaberry's wins when it comes to ambience.

                                  My one and only dinner at the Full Moon was disappointing. I put it down to the fact that they only do dinner once (sometimes twice) a month! I should really give them another try.

                                  1. re: ambrose

                                    I had promised myself that I would curb my often too-acid tongue here but when it comes to a comparison of Full Moon and Market Roost for breakfast, the distance 'tween the two is so great in favor of Market Roost that I'm forced to . . . Phew! Caught myself. Suffice it say that I'd rather not do Full Moon for breakfast again.

                                    1. re: mmgpsych

                                      As noted, I've had only lunch at the Full Moon and I've always been pleased with the food and service. It seems odd that a restaurant that serves only breakfast and lunch would do one well and the other not so well. What is it about Full Moon's breakfast that provokes such an almost acid tongued response? :-))

                                      1. re: ambrose

                                        We went with great expectations, and had ordered two different omelets. The fillings in both were cold, as if they were thrown in last minute only as an afterthought. Like the old joke goes: The food was pretty awful but at least there was a lot if it! :-)))

                                2. I moved out to California 8 yrs ago but still go to Meil's in Stockton for breakfast every time I visit NJ. Spendy, but their eggs benedict is AWESOME with wonderful lemony hollandaise.

                                  1. I hesitate to recommend my favorite Flemington restaurant, because I still want to be able to get into it, but check out Orvieto on Main Street. It's BYO, so hit the liquor store first. Old school Italian - husband in the kitchen, wife working front of house, sons are busboys, and the daughter is a waitress when she's home from college. If quiet, efficient, unobtrusive service is a must for you, this is not your place. It's homey and friendly, and dinner will take a while. I'd have to recommend the onions and gorgonzola as my favorite app, though they're all good. For dinner, I always get the stuffed salmon in the fruity cream sauce (the stuffing and fruit changes from time to time, and there's generally two choices for the salmon). Other things are quite good, but I've found that I either get the salmon, or wish I'd gotten the salmon. Desserts will make you glad you had time to digest - they are large and decadent and not to be missed. Even the string beans are good here - I really HATE most veggies, including string beans, and the string beans here are awesome.

                                    You can open the menu if you really want to, but it's just for show. The real joy is in the specials, which Elena (the wife) will describe in loving detail. It's like audio food porn. We usually go with another couple, and dinner for 4 (4 apps, 4 entrees, 4 desserts) runs about $250 with tax and tip.

                                    1. Not too far from Flemington (north on 31 to 513), in High Bridge, is Circa, which has been open a few years but is still good. The French bistro-style menu has gone through some changes, and there are new chefs, but it's now a solid mix of bistro food with some Asian and Mediterranean touches. The decor is pure Left Bank Paris... live music on Thursdays, so more crowded then, but in summer, weekends are no problem.

                                      Still a bit further north is a little known gem, on Main St in Hackettstown, a little pub known as The Laughing Lion...off to the side of the tavern is their fine-dining room, where great veal, beef, seafood dished may be had, with very attentive service.