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Jul 21, 2010 09:47 AM

South City Grill - Mountain Lakes

Anyone know the story with this restaurant? It was one of my favorites for years, the only place I've ever had them grate fresh horseradish over my oysters. It's closed now, and has a sign on it: "Coming Soon - Bentlee's Grill" (or something similar). From their website, it looks like there is still one South City Grill left, in Jersey City.

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  1. Owners have been retooling the restaurant group, and this one is the one currently going through changes. This will reopen with that silly name, and you may still get your fresh horseradish.

    7 Replies
    1. re: tommy

      I just noticed the other day the the SCG on Rte. 17 in Paramus closed. Now I know why. Thanks.

      1. re: ttoommyy

        The SCG on 17 in Rochelle Park has been Bistro 55 for about 10 months now. Same owners, better restaurant.

        1. re: tommy

          Totally agree--Bistro 55 is a terrific spot!

          And if anyone from the SC Restaurant Group is reading, here's 2 cents more that says Bentlee's (or whatever it is) is a TERRIBLE name! I also drove past the Mtn Lakes location earlier this week (admission: on my way home from Denville Dairy) and did a double-take only b/c of the name. Actually wondered if the SCRG had given up the real estate b/c I couldn't believe they'd go that route. Oh, well...

          Denville Dairy
          34A Broadway, Denville, NJ 07834

          1. re: Curlz

            It's a dreadful name.

            Maybe it was named after the owner's car, which may or may not be a Bentley, which makes it that much worse.

            I'm sure there's a reason they picked that name, and it's a reference to something I don't get, but the fact of the matter is that it immediately brings to mind a very expensive car, which is out of reach of even the richest of the rich. I'm rich, stupid rich, with lots of money to throw around, mad-like, but that's just crazy rich. Calling it Mercedes or Lexus would still be offensive, although not as much out of reach of their audience, judging by the parking lots of their restaurants.

            Please, SCG folks, reconsider. You've listened to me before, listen to me now, just once more.


            1. re: tommy

              Do as he says! Do as he says!

            2. re: Curlz

              The sign on one side appears to have ripped off in the rainstorm this morning. It was danging this morning. Perhaps another storm can finish the job.

              I've been told it will be a sort-of "best of" the South City places -- some from SCG, some from Fire & Oak, some from Bistro 55.

              1. re: billpitcher

                Fire & Oak is one of their restaurants? Went to one in a hotel in Jersey City. Lousy service and mediocre food.

      2. I am actually have some info about bentlees it is same owners and I am expecting a lot. Everything will be made from scratch except ketchup and mayo. everything fresh 32 wines by glass beautiful decor. A lil more casual than south city better prices share plates private party rooms fantastic new foh staff. Same great managers. very exciting blows away the area in terms of competitions lots of effort going into opening which should be within the next two weeks. even desserts are madein house

        4 Replies
          1. re: jstorm320

            Do you work there? I don't have a problem with that, if you have helpful information, but to be fair you should identify yourself. By the way, it's not that hard to make ketchup and mayo from scratch, either.

            1. re: njkori

              Bentlee's is open right now. Jstorm is right on everything he says, so he or she must work for the company. They kept some of their FOH( front of the house) staff and yes, a lot of new faces up there. There's 32 wines by the glass, 12 beers on tap and 20 beers on bottle in addition to signature cocktails.
              Prices are lower and the places is a little more casual than it used to be.
              There's a happy hour from 4 to seven monday thru friday with $4 Sam Adams and Corrs light draft, $5 glasses of wine and $5 cocktails, on Sundays there is a 1/2 price bbq ribs and the same beers as the weekdays happy hour and kids meal gets a choice of any dessert on the menu included.

              1. re: njkori

                Njkori, jstorm has to be in the managment to know all this info before they even open, so, yes his information is going to be very helpful if you are into dinning. All he said is accurate, you can check it out by yourself since they're now open. I'm also sure that jstorm knows how to make his own mayo and also ketchup (there's a video on how to make it at the top of this page, lol), he was only saying that's the only products they don't make there ;-)

            2. Okay people, lets not continue to beat the horse when its on the ground. Bentlees could be the change the Mountain Lakes community needs. If South City Grill was so great, why did it close? Reasons are obvious; Meteocre dining and excessive prices. But growing competition from nearby Bone Fish, another upscale seafoood chain, also set the bar a little too high for SCG to even compete. Bentlees challenge now is to seperate itself from other chains like TGI Fridays and Applebees, which has already consumed its share of Parsippany-Mt. Lakes market.

              1. Went to Bentlees this evening. Yes Mountain Lakes. CLOSED. Sign on door reads Closed for the summer. Renovations. Grass is 10" high out front.

                1 Reply
                1. re: Cavalier858

                  Phone rings off the hook. The group seems to be trimming some fat. Their executive chef and them parted ways. Bistro 55 no longer lists any chef on the menu (they used to list executive, and either sous or de cuisine). The building in Little Falls is still for sale it seems. It's been a tough economy. Hopefully they pull through.

                  Bistro 55
                  55 Route 17 South, Rochelle Park, NJ 07662

                2. Online research i found that the owner was verbally and physically abusive to employees. -

                  3 Replies
                  1. re: rebeccadiamond

                    That's "research"? LOL. No dates. No names. No confirmation. Just a pile of stinky doodie.

                    1. re: tommy

                      Tommy, I know that you liked Bistro 55 in the earlier days. I have a good friend in the restaurant business....she says that Shameless Restaurant is a popular website to view complaints from workers and consumers, too. I know that it's anonymous, but so much is on the web these days. Of course, you are right as always.

                    2. re: rebeccadiamond

             many years is it since South City Grill was even open in Rochelle Park?