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Dec 4, 2008 09:50 AM

HELP - Need suggestions for an early dinner in the Princeton area

Friends are meeting in the Princeton area for an early dinner celebrating the holidays on 12/20. Some are coming down from North Jersey and others coming up from Philly. We have no clue where to go so I'm hoping you all can give us some help. Nothing too fancy, just good food. Suggestions?

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    1. YEP- just ate at blue Point Grill last Saturday and it was fantastic. fresh fish, stone crab claws, raw oyster bar- they have a different menu every day. we had monkfish medallions and they were the meatiest most tender hunks of fish i have ever eaten! the wilted spinach is also very good, especially if you add a squeeze of fresh lemon. they have a few land lubber dishes as well, but the fish is the highlight.

      it's BYOB, no corking fee, which was nice! you can call ahead Mon - Thur but not on weekends. if you want fresh, well prepared seafood- it's not a fancy place but it is really really GREAT. their key lime pie and Vanilla Sea Salt Ice Cream are also delicious.

      ask for Simon- he's an outstanding friendly waiter. tell him Aphioni sent you! :)

      1. I'll second Aphioni's Blue Point Grill suggestion - if all of your group likes fish and if you plan on arriving at 4:30 (when doors open, with wine in hand and group all there) or else be prepared for an 1hr+ wait on Saturday 12/20! :)

        Here's what I posted in another thread asking a similar question. All pretty much fit your request but note there's not a lot of impressive or fantastic food in Princeton and a lot of places are byob. Call now for reservations and some are on!

        In town:

        Witherspoon Grill - steaks & more; good atmosphere; OK food;

        Blue Point Grill - all fish & seafood (with one steak & chicken choice); byob; very busy; no res'vs; usually loud and crowded, but the freshest fish in town!;

        Ferry House - american, byob; average atmosphere; interesting food.

        Out of town (15 min radius):

        Blue Bottle Cafe, Hopewell - american, byob; nothing spectacular atmosphere; excellent food;

        Eno Terra, Kingston - italian & winebar; newly opened; fantastic atmosphere; OK food;

        One 53, Rocky Hill - bistro; friendly atmosphere (close tables); very good food; request winecellar for semiprivate dining (two large communal tables);

        Acacia, Lawrence - american, byob; very good atmosphere; very good food;

        KC Prime, Lawrence - steaks & more; nice atmosphere; very good food;

        Ruth's Chris, Plainsboro - steaks ; very good atmosphere; very good food; pricey;

        1. We really like The Blue Point Grill but it sounds like you have a farily large party of friends from around the state coming together. Blue Point Grill is not the type of place to have relaxed conversation. The food is great but its a frenetic atmosphere.

          The best choice is The Blue Bottle Cafe in Hopewell, about 10 minutes from Princeton. The best in the area and much more relaxing atmosphere. Search this board and you will get numerous threads and posts praising the food and service.
          BYO and you had better set a reservation now as they fill up a few weeks in advance.

          1. Depending on the type of atmosphere you're looking for, Triumph Brewing in princeton might fit the bill. The food isn't blue bottle/acacia, but it is a fun place to get together with friends.

            1 Reply
            1. re: trent_onion

              Beer is good there. Food, once you get past the burgers, does not live up to its promises. It's been a while since I've been there, but I stopped going because of the repeatedly uninspiring food. If you go for the beer, stick to burgers and apps.