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Dinner Recs near Izod Center/Continental Airlines Arena?

p
piegirl74 Oct 22, 2008 09:29 AM

Im a regular on the Manhattan board, but know next to nothing about New Jersey.

Attending a concert on Sunday night at the Izod Center (East Rutherford, NJ). Was thinking of getting to NJ early (traffic!!) and having dinner somewhere near-ish the arena before the concert. Im not interested in eating at the facility.

Is there ANYTHING to eat out there (within say...15 mins of the arena)? No chains (Applebee's) or fast food, please.

If we are better off eating in Brooklyn before we head over, I just want to plan my day accordingly.

Thanks all!

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  1. v
    valerie Oct 22, 2008 02:12 PM

    Three good places nearby:

    Segovia (spanish) -- get there early, it gets very crowded

    http://www.segoviarestaurant.com/

    Bazzarelli (italian) -- nothing fancy, but good food

    http://www.bazzarellirestaurant.com/

    Park and Orchard --

    http://www.parkandorchard.com/

    5 Replies
    1. re: valerie
      f
      fourunder Oct 23, 2008 07:50 AM

      Valerie,

      It's been a couple of years since I have been to Bazzarelli's restaurant. I clicked on the link and was surprised to see it now describes itself as "Fine Dining". Has there been a transformation at Bazzarelli's? I recall a typical neighborhood red sauce restaurant that also serves pizza.,,,,well prepared and reasonable prices.

      My only negatives about the restaurant I remember is the hard tile floors, glass topped tables and stackable banquet chairs.....just a little harsh and cold to be comfortable.

      1. re: fourunder
        v
        valerie Oct 23, 2008 08:50 AM

        Definitely not fine dining and yes, as you described...neighborhood red sauce restaurant that also serves pizza.,,,,well prepared and reasonable prices.

        I haven't been in a while, maybe a year. My parents used to live in the area but now they live in Florida and we don't get to that area too often. And when we find ourselves in that area, we really do like Segovia and usually opt for that (my husband LOVES their baked stuffed lobster).

        I never minded the floors/tables/chairs at Bazzarelli, in fact, I don't think I ever noticed one way or the other.

        1. re: valerie
          f
          fourunder Oct 23, 2008 09:31 AM

          Valerie,

          thanks for responding and we can both agree Bazzarelli's is a "fine" family restaurant, but I would add that the pictures supplied on the website might be a little confusing....for better or worse.

          Another poster (RayP) likes Dolce Novita also in Moonachie and probably across the street from both Segovia's and Bazzarelli's.......have you been there?

          http://www.dolcenovitanj.com/

          1. re: fourunder
            v
            valerie Oct 23, 2008 12:01 PM

            Actually, I hadn't looked that closely at the website but I did go back when you said that the pictures might be confusing. That's exactly what the place looks like, so it's not misleading. And in the "about us" section of the site, it states:

            "Italian-born owner and host, Aldo Bazzarelli welcomes you to Bazzarelli Restaurant, where he and his family charm you with home-style Italian cooking and hospitality."

            That's pretty much what it is. I think you are looking too much into the use of the word "fine" on the website.

            I have not been to Dolce Novita.

            1. re: valerie
              f
              fourunder Oct 23, 2008 07:16 PM

              Valerie,

              It's not the use of the word "fine" alone....it's also the pictures scrolling across the top of the page that appears different from my recollection. In the past when I frequented Bazzarelli's, they never presented the food like that when I was there....either at my table or at another one in the dining room. It was always a rustic presentation on simple white plates.

              Regardless, I agree the food at Bazzarelli's is very good and priced reasonably.

    2. f
      fourunder Oct 22, 2008 02:59 PM

      Assuming you are coming out of the Holland or Lincoln Tunnels...

      In Jersey City, for Japanese, there is Komegashi Too on Pavonia just outside the Holland Tunnel. For Joisey Red Sauce Italian, there is Rita and Joe's just off Routes 1 & 9 and 440. a little further south on 440 to Danforth to Terhune Street is Laico's.

      http://www.komegashi.com/

      http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/496797

      http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/507050

      Coming out of the Lincoln Tunnel, there's a place in Union City that specializes in grilled meat Colombian Style. The restaurant is above market owned by the same people I believe and is very popular and know for their Grilled Skirt Steaks. It called Mi Bandera.

      http://www.mibanderanj.com/

      Also, Ferry Street in Newark is close and there are many Spanish, Portuguese and Brazilian restaurants to choose from with easy access back to the New Jersey Turnpike to get to the Izod Center/Arena

      1. tommy Oct 22, 2008 03:41 PM

        I would go to Rutt's Hut for a north jersey hot dog experience. regardless of how fast it is.

        1. j
          jethro Oct 22, 2008 07:16 PM

          5 minutes from the Arena is Steve's Sizzling Steaks on Rt. 17 south. Not sure what your budget is, but this place may do it for you. The places that Valerie recommended are all very good also.

          1. l
            lhmom Oct 23, 2008 06:25 AM

            We've sent many of our NY friends to Park and Orchard in Rutherford (or maybe East Rutherford ). Their food is fresh, their menu creative! My favorite dish is scallops with cashew nuts and bananas. They have lots of chicken, pasta and vegetarian dishes on the menu, along with a few red meat dishes. It is a busy restaurant, so go early and enjoy your meal. The restuarant is no more than a 5 minute drive from Izod. If you haven't been to the Izod Center lately, the parking is a mess- allow extra time for parking!

            1. p
              piegirl74 Oct 23, 2008 06:58 AM

              Awesome suggestions. Thank you all so much!

              1. michele cindy Oct 23, 2008 06:12 PM

                I 2nd Segovia. When we had the same dilemma as you awhile ago. Segovia is similar to the Portugeuse restaurants in Newark. Big portions, and great sangria too. I also 2nd Rutt's Hut too for the other end of the spectrum. I think you will be really happy with Segovia.

                1. p
                  piegirl74 Oct 27, 2008 10:07 AM

                  Thanks all for the recommendations! We ended up at Segovia (who knew that a restaurant would be so packed at 5:45pm?! I am used to NYC!). It fit the bill for what we neeed (with the added bonus of allowing us to approach the arena from the NON traffic conjested side).

                  Next time we have an event over there, we'll give Park & Orchard a try. Thanks again!

                  1 Reply
                  1. re: piegirl74
                    v
                    valerie Oct 27, 2008 12:09 PM

                    Glad you liked Segovia! And I wasn't lying when I said get there early...when I have my kids with me (ages 2 and 4), I won't go there unless we get there by 5:30. After that, there is always a wait.

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