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one night in frenchtown?

Spending one night in Frenchtown as a getaway from NYC - if taste is most important, does anyone have an opinion on where would be best for dinner among The National Hotel, Frenchtown Cafe, Frenchtown Inn Grill Room, Lovin Oven, or someplace I've not seen mentioned online? Frenchtown Inn itself seems a bit stuffy - want someplace delicious yet relaxed. Would appreciate any recs from locals! Thanks!

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Frenchtown Inn
7 Bridge St, Frenchtown, NJ 08825

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  1. Your list covers a wide range of options but if I had to pick one I would choose the Frenchtown Inn Grill Room. It is definitely not stuffy. The main dining room is much more in the fine dining category and happens to be one of my favorite restaurants in Hunterdon County.

    The Frenchtown Cafe is a delightful little spot and you might consider it for breakfast or even lunch. I'm pretty sure it doesn't serve dinner.

    Can't comment on The National Hotel as I haven't been there since it reopened. Ditto for the Lovin' Oven. I haven't been since they moved from Milford. The Lovin' Oven has been getting some pretty good press lately though some cynics say a lot of people go there only in the hopes of catching a glimpse of Elizabeth Gilbert (Eat, Pray, Love) who has a store next door.

    One other place to consider is the Race Street Cafe which serves up good food at reasonable prices.

    http://www.racestcafe.com/

    If you are willing to take a short drive north to Milford you will find a terrific seafood restaurant called the Milford Oyster House. Terrific food and ambiance. Well worth the trip imho.

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    Frenchtown Inn
    7 Bridge St, Frenchtown, NJ 08825

    Race Street Cafe
    2 Race St, Frenchtown, NJ 08825

    Milford Oyster House
    92 Water St, Milford, NJ 08848

    Lovin' Oven
    62 Trenton Ave, Frenchtown, NJ 08825

    11 Replies
    1. re: ambrose

      Thanks! Every place looks so cute there that it's hard to decide - we do a fair bit of fine dining type places in Manhattan so when we're on the road we tend to skew more casual - but Milford Oyster House is also intriguing! We're staying at National Hotel so if we eat anything there I'll report back, as there doesn't seem to be much intel on it yet.

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      Milford Oyster House
      92 Water St, Milford, NJ 08848

      1. re: starvomarvo

        Just remembered that there is a Mexican place in Frenchtown called Cocina Del Sol. Never been there but it claims to be authentic. I've found, however, that authentic means different things to different people!

        http://www.cocinadelsolnj.com/

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        Cocina Del Sol
        10 Bridge St Ste 2, Frenchtown, NJ 08825

        1. re: ambrose

          Cocina Del Sol is not bad, but in no way should be considered authentic. If you are visiting from NYC, I see no reason to visit there. If you live nearby and looking to try a something new, it's worth a try for lunch.
          The Bridge Street Cafe is a good choice for lunch. Their spinach cakes are one of my favorite things to eat! Lovin Oven, too, is a good lunch choice. But I wouldn't spend your one and only dinner there. Stick with the Frenchtown Inn or Milford Oyster House.

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          Cocina Del Sol
          10 Bridge St Ste 2, Frenchtown, NJ 08825

          Frenchtown Inn
          7 Bridge St, Frenchtown, NJ 08825

          Milford Oyster House
          92 Water St, Milford, NJ 08848

          1. re: madgreek99

            Thanks again! The boyfriend likes the look of MOH so that is our most likely destination...and it sounds like we'll have a lot of good choices for Sunday breakfast/lunch!

            1. re: starvomarvo

              I suggest that if you are in Milford on Sunday, visit the store at Bobolink Dairy on Stamets Rd. for great cheese and bread. Their bread is actually better than anything in Manhattan, in my humble opinion.

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              Bobolink Dairy
              369 Stamets Road, Milford, NJ 08848

              1. re: pitterpatter

                Thanks so much for the Milford Oyster House rec - it was exactly what we were looking for!! The food was great and the atmosphere was that perfect relaxed vibe we were hoping to find - the nicest servers, etc. We also tried Lovin Oven for breakfast and that was nice as well (great value for us compared with nyc prices). Will have to hit Bobolink on a Sunday drive sometime!

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                Milford Oyster House
                92 Water St, Milford, NJ 08848

                1. re: starvomarvo

                  Starvomarvo - How was your stay at the National Hotel? It is high on my list of destinations for that weekend away that never seems to happen. Did you eat there at all?

                  1. re: Forklaw

                    Well - we didn't love the National, to be honest. Found it really overpriced for the half-baked renovation they completed (new sink, but no vanity, new paint on the walls, but not the ceiling - stuff like that). Our room was up around the back and situated in such a way that we had to go outside and around the entire building to make it to the front desk, which was a little off-putting. The atmosphere was really dark and cold - literally, our room had no heat!

                    All in all, there was nothing that made us want to try them out for a meal, and we were only there the one night anyway, and were so pleased with what we ate elsewhere. Out of all the places we saw in town it seemed the least charming, and I suspect will remain in business primarily thanks to a lack of other places to grab a drink in the area.

                    1. re: starvomarvo

                      Thanks for the information. Guess the National Hotel will no longer top my list pf potential places to stay for a weekend getaway in Hunterdon County.

                      1. re: starvomarvo

                        I live in Frenchtown and every time we go to the National for drinks, I keep hoping they will have some new, better food on the menu but they STILL HAVE NOT changed it.
                        Both the Restaurant and Basement Bar are stuffy. Not sure the people there know how or what to do with a restaurant and bar. They don't have any bar food at the bar! You also can't get draft beer in the bar and the drink list/selection is very minimal.

                        1. re: littlecmad

                          I know this thread is pretty old but I live in Frenchtown too and have to agree with littlecmad.. Not a fan of Frenchtown Inn..

                          My husband and I went to dinner with our two little boys in the grill room a few months ago and there was a "gentleman" there that dropped the f-bomb and every other curse word I didn't want my kids to learn very loudly and was telling inappropriate stories with inappropriate language with tables of families with little kids all around him... After he said the C-word in front of my kids I'd had enough.. They moved us outside and the owner came over and said she was sorry, she'd ask him to watch his language but there was really nothing she could do to stop him from saying what he was going to say because that was the kind of guy he was.. We were really disappointed that apparently the owners thought it was ok to overcharge people for mediocre food and then allow that language in the grill room. We paid about $90 for two drinks, two appetizers and a kids plate that night. Atmosphere just stinks, will never go back.

                          Better options are drinks at The National (food is ok, atmosphere friendlier then the Inn), if you want something fancy that is guaranteed to be event free as far as service and food go to Golden Pheasant or head over to Black Bass on the PA side, both pricey but worth it. More casual would be dinner at Lovin Oven (byob) or MOH.. Ship Inn is really awful and Indian Rock isn't very good either. Breakfast at Eat Cake if you just want pastries or Lovin Oven or Frenchtown Cafe for sit down.. Bridge Cafe is good too but the chairs are really uncomfortable... The Spinach Cakes are wonderful for lunch! thats my two cents.. some nice restaurants in the area but I wouldn't recommend the Inn.

                          Never heard of Bobolink will have to check it out for sure!