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Portuguese restaurants in Newark

What are some good restaurants in the ironbound district

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    1. There are quite a few threads on this topic, kindly suggest you search either "Portuguese" or "Ironbound". Our favorite is Seabras Marisqueira just off Ferry Street but there are many others discussed here in depth.

      17 Replies
        1. re: buttertart

          Strangely enough fate is bringing me to Newark this Saturday (this after I posted earlier). I plan on trying Seabras Marisqueira based on reviews here and on Yelp. We all eat seafood so what are some of your favorites. My friend was enticed by the giant crab legs. We also like "loud and boisterous" however it sounds like a smallish place.

          Do we need a reservation if we go at around 5:45??

          1. re: jcmods

            We have only been there on Saturdays around 3 pm and there are always tables. It's not tiny. I think you'd have a harder time for a table later in the evening since people tend to eat later. Boisterous maybe a bit in the bar depending on football matches etc.
            Pork with clams, any fish prep, mixed grilled seafood, shrimp, all good. Cheap and very good oysters on the half shell. I generally eat the oysters and suckling pig which is very good there too. Can't go wrong. Go hungry, big portions.

            1. re: jcmods

              I have never needed a reservation around that time and the dining room is not as loud as the bar area. Check out the seafood display window in the kitchen for an idea of what's fresh that day.Every thing I've ever tried is quite good but the standouts is the pork with clams,grilled bacalao,grilled short ribs,lachon,grilled prawns and the beef steak with ham and fried egg.
              There is half bottles of wine and Super Bock beer,the sangria has been off lately so I would decline. Enjoy.

              1. re: Duppie

                In that dining room you might as well be in a restaurant in the Bairro Alto. I love Seabras.

                1. re: buttertart

                  Quite right, but to me it has the feel of a little restaurant we frequented in Cascias called Tulia's that made the most sublime Bacalao con natas and Pulpo salad.

                2. re: Duppie

                  Why was the sangria off? Hopefully no Cinammon. That is a capital crime in my book.

                  1. re: jcmods

                    The last 3 times we were there the sangria was either too sweet or had little or no wine/brandy/cognac and was in essence expensive fruit juice but only when being made by the rookie servers. Look for the older gentleman with grey hair, he is from the old crew and still is part owner and makes a mean sangria.
                    The half bottles are a good value and be sure to start with the oysters as Buttertart had posted earlier, a good deal.

                    1. re: Duppie

                      Their watercress salad is also super.

                      1. re: Duppie

                        I'm not sure about Seabra's but if you look at what is used to make most of the Sangria in the Ironbound then you know why it tastes like crap. Often, it starts with a gallon jug of Carlo Rossi, the same cheap swill my college roomate kept in the fridge back in the '70s.

                        Do yourself a favor and try a few bottles of proper Portuguese wine!

                        1. re: jmoryl

                          I have several bottles of Douros,Alentajos and decent ports I was able to bring back and luckily have access to a good selection of Portuguese wines because of the demand in South River.

                  2. re: jcmods

                    I have only dined at Seabras once, but I really enjoyed the acorda (hearty bread soup). As good as I had in Portugal. We went before a Devils game, and the place was lively, but there were some open tables.

                    1. re: jcmods

                      Went last night and this place really does live up to the hype. And you were not kidding. They give you a TON of food. Felt bad that I could not finish and did not want a doggie bag due to PATH/Metro north, drinks in Manhattan afterward. For appetizers we got the garlic shrimp, cockles and clams casino. All were really good. I almost think if I went back I would just order lots of appetizers. The atmosphere was great too. It reminded me of a Galician Seafood restaurant in Madrid that I like a lot. I definitely did not feel like I was in America. I can see this being my new favorite in Newark. We went around 6:00 and it got very crowded at around 8 pm.

                  3. Casa Vasca is my favorite

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                    Casa Vasca
                    141 Elm St, Newark, NJ 07105

                    1. Casa Vasca always good. It has been our favorite place for several years.

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                      Casa Vasca
                      141 Elm St, Newark, NJ 07105

                      5 Replies
                      1. re: ansky4

                        Not to be too pedantic, but Casa Vasca is not Portuguese. Vasca = Basque.

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                        Casa Vasca
                        141 Elm St, Newark, NJ 07105

                        1. re: jmoryl

                          Aren't all of these recommendations except Seabras Spanish? That's what I was wondering. The cuisine is not the same.

                          1. re: buttertart

                            If they are technically spanish, they are not really close to what I have had in madrid....especially the Paella (no Bomba rice and it is sorta "deep dish"). I think most of these places are run by Portuguese, but blur the line considerably. I was a little disappointed with Casa Vasca, but we did not follow the prime directive which was to eat at the bar. (Wasn't a whole lot of room). We ended up in the back room and I feel that is where we went wrong. However, I certainly wouldn't call this true Basque Cuisine.

                            Many years ago Don Pepe was my favorite, but going there expecting authentic "Spain" (or Portugal) is like going to an Italian American Red Sauce joint expecting the food to be the same as that served in Italy. It may be pretty good, but it is certainly different.

                            1. re: buttertart

                              The vast majority of the places in Ironbound are Portuguese or Brazilian. The ones that seem to get recommended over and over are some of the most mediorcre (e.g. Don Pepe, Iberia, etc.). Do a seach on Newark Ironbound for more ideas.

                              1. re: jmoryl

                                I suggested that to the OP. I'm pretty familiar with the Ironbound and Portuguese food myself.

                        2. Reading this thread last week put me in the mood, so a buddy and I headed to Seabra's Marisqueira on Friday night. I've taken out-of-state visitors to Iberia for the rodizio experience, and have been eating at Casa Vasca for years and always have a great meal there, but I figured on trying something new this time. We had a great time! Seabra's is the real thing.

                          We ate at the counter/bar in the front of the restaurant and made friends with the staff and our neighbors. The food was perfect: two orders of oysters, cockles in garlic, a short rib entree, and a fantastic crab dinner. The crabs - at least four different types - were on ice in the middle of the counter/bar ... They took a rather large Portuguese crab, crack the claws and keep them aside, do some sort of magic with the body of the crab with garlic and some beer from the tap, and then serve it back in the shell. Spooned it all up with some toasted bread that came with it. Amazing. I'm not sure if it was even on the menu, but I saw some others having it and knew I wanted it too! We washed it all down with a couple bottles of red wine from the Douro, and finished up the evening with a shot of some grappa-like drink.

                          The room in back is definitely tamer than the up-front area, but looked fine, if a different experience than the counter/bar. (Either is fine for the family, and there were a several kids sitting at the counter area.) On the way to the back you pass the fish, oysters, cockles on ice, then there's the lobster tank. In the few hours that I was there, the fish on ice/display changed a couple of times. Open window to the kitchen where you can see all the prep work and the stoves.

                          We arrived a little before 7 PM on a Friday night, and were there for over 3.5 hours. It started getting busy around 8 PM and all the seats filled up, but nobody was asking us to leave. Free, off-street parking next door.

                          Fresh, tasty, great experience. Highly recommended.

                          http://www.njdiningguide.com/seabras....

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                          Seabra's Marisqueira
                          87 Madison St, Newark, NJ 07105

                          2 Replies
                          1. re: njfreqflyer

                            Must try that crab!!! sounds divine.

                            1. re: buttertart

                              That crab dip is devine!!! It is not on the menu, so you have to be in the know. I always ask for the "crab dip thingy" and they know what I want. I often wondered what they put in it because of the unique taste. I am happy to hear that you actually saw them make it. I would have been devastated to find that they got it at Costco.