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New Year's Eve

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Looking for a place for New Year's Eve in Central NJ. We prefer live music with dancing and open bar. Went to L'Affaire for years when we lived in that area. Started out fabulous, then after a few years it started sliding (haven't been there in 3 years). We tried Trinity a couple of years ago, and while the food was great (as it always is), the entertainment was harder rock and the crowd was more the local folks popping in after dinner. Last year, we went to Jacques in Middletown. Thought the food was sparse, and somewhat mediocre, and the setup was poor. So......any suggestions would be appreciated.

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  1. Do you still want a place in the Middletown area? If not, what areas are you looking for, or what do you call Central Jersey? -mJ

    1 Reply
    1. re: njfoodies

      Hi. I am interested in this too. I am traveling up from MD. My dad is in the Marlboro/Freehold area and he suggested the Cornucopia Cruise in Perth Amboy and I gulped at the price especially when I expect the food wouldn't be that great. Maybe I'd take the kids (ages 7-13); maybe not. I did check out the suggestions in a 2008 post about New Year's EVe. Any more out there? Latin is okay. Open bar isn't required.

    2. I will be attending Piccola Italia's New Years Eve Party in Ocean (I recognize about a 20-30 minute drive from Middletown but I digress..). I should preface that I have never been there for New Years but have always been pleased with their food. My understanding is that there are going to be two seatings, the later one at 8:30pm.

      The later session is a 5 course meal which is rather pricey at $95, but the free champagne will allow you to forget about that for at least a few minutes. I suppose its still cheaper than NYC .

      They have a decent wine and beer list and the atmosphere happens to be perfect for what we are looking for...figured I'd throw it in the mix!!!!

      1. New Year's Eve is for indulging! That said, we will be local where we can walk. 4th year in a row at the same restaurant! -mJ

        1 Reply
        1. re: njfoodies

          I just had lunch at Boulevard 572 in Kenilworth. They had some fliers out for New Year's Eve that sounded interesting. The food there has always been excellent.

        2. You may, or then again, you may not want to look into Bistro Ole in Asbury Park, which is a small place, but it will be rocking on NYE. It may not be your cup of tea though as it is a gay owned restaurant and if they have entertainment, it will be off the wall. Was there last year right before NYE and they had a 6'3" Judy Garland imitator doing a stage show (there were many straight hetero couples such as my wife and I dining that evening).

          The entertainer as well as the owner does get everybody going. Look at it as almost being the "Birdcage' on LSD with all of it being great great fun that you usually can't find this side of the Hudson.

          Most other places you're getting "shorted" on the quality of the food. Then again if you just want 'just enough' and would rather tear it up dancing and drinking, I'd suggest something like the Woodbridge Hilton.

          1. Thanks everyone...don't need to be in the Middletown area. We are actually from Howell, so we can go north or south. JustJake, I think Bistro Ole maybe too wild for us (my "Birdcage" on LSD days are a bit behind me). The Hilton Woodbridge is likely more of what we like to do. Dancing to a live band is important to us, as is the food.

            1. So, after much "sitting on the fence" we decided to go to Moonstruck New Year's Eve. Gonna do the late seating. While there likely won't be dancing, we'll at least enjoy a great meal and some good sounds from the jazz group that will be playing.
              Happy New Year everyone.

              2 Replies
              1. re: lggfly

                Iggie. You missed my point as to Bistro Ole. While your eventual dining destination with a jazz trio or solo jazz piano sounds real nice and I happen to really like Moonstruck (with that being my idea of a nice nite out), your initial post revolved around doing something different for NYE.

                And the party (with dancing, entertainment etc) at Bistro Ole would've been a party and a half, with laughs, and a bit of dancing. I wasn't about to drop $250 for the evening anywhere on NYE. And trust me, ......no one would've tried 'to turn you or your spouse'.

                Just an offer of doing something different on NYE with pretty darned good food. Sometimes it's nice to jump outta the box and do something a bit different as opposed to the pedestrian suburban offerings that are typically availed on NYE here in NJ and fwiw, I'm a born here Shore 'local'.

                Heterosexually yours,

                Just Jake. :)

                1. re: JustJake

                  Hey JustJake.....thanks for your feedback on Bistro Ole. Its been bookmarked on my computer for a while and is certainly on our list to try. My only reluctance with NYE was that it sounded like it might be too "wild and loud" for us. We are in our upper 50's and while I still consider us to be "young" I will admit to not being too excited about places that are too loud and wild. As for any concern about "trying to turn either myself or my wife," I'm assuming you are referring to it being a gay-owned restaurant. If so, its certainly not an issue. We are very comfortable with everyone and have long supported and encouraged everyone to be with whomever they choose.

              2. I'm also looking for a NYE dinner with my SO. Why are NYE prices so jacked up? We're looking at Moonstruck - why does it cost 85$ for a 4 course meal? I also check Nicholas and they're charging 125 for 3 courses. WTF?

                2 Replies
                1. re: joonjoon

                  We're heading over to the Crowne Plaza in Monroe on Applegarth (Rt 32). They have a buffet with items we enjoy: Grilled Salmon, Prime Rib, Mushroom Ravioli, and the standards. Live music, open bar and dancing!

                  1. re: joonjoon

                    We're going to Mr.C's on the ocean in Allenhurst. 732.531.3665.

                  2. Our plans ended up getting a bit crazy because of work requirements, so we were forced to cancel our reservations at Oliver-A Bistro. I did however get home in time for dinner and we ended up at The Farnsworth House in Bordentown and had a great meal. Zelda ended up orering the twin lobster tails, and I had the surf and turf. Great meal before a gathering at a friends! Very tasty! Cheers! -mJ