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Dish ~ Red Bank

I figure there must be threads regarding this establishment somewhere on CH, but see what you can come up with by doing a search on "Dish" here... :-)

At any rate, we were recently going to a show at the Count Basie Theater, and figured it would not only be convenient, but I had also heard many good things about the place and can't explain why I had not tried it before. Originally we figured that there shouldn't be a problem getting a table on a Tuesday night, but on further reflection realized that it is a small space and it would not take many of the 1500 or so patrons of the Basie who had the same idea to fill the place, so we reserved a table for 6pm. Good move! When we got there prior to 6 it was already more than half full, and by 6:30 it was entirely full.

A basket of bread as well as a small bowl of assorted olives in olive oil was served when we were seated. We did not realize that Dish offers a Prix Fixe selection of 3 courses for $25 on Tuesday and Wednesday nights. I might have gone for that but really had my heart set on the Short Rib dinner that was not included on the Prix Fixe menu. My friend, however, did go for the Prix Fixe.

We both started with the PEI Mussels, which were a generous helping Pancetta, White Wine (referred to on the online menu as "Wine White"), Tomato & Pernoda. They were meaty and tasty, and the broth encouraged us to go through 2 baskets of the bread!

For entrees, as mentioned above I went for the Stout Braised Short ribs which were served with Maple Sweet Potato Mash and sauteed veggies. My companion ordered the Sour Cherry and Bourbon Glazed Double Cut Pork Chop, also with the sweet potatoes and veggies.

OMG!!! The food was great, but the portions were stunning! The boneless short ribs, which were succulent and fork tender, were stacked like 6 inches high and were served on a serious helping of the mashed sweet potatoes and surrounded by the sauteed haricots verts, carrots and onion. My friends double cut pork chops were equally gargantuan. The fact that his order was part of the Prix Fixe menu had no bearing on the size of the serving. All the food was wonderful and I was hard pressed to actually finish it all.

In a way I was glad I had not gone Prix Fixe, as it also included dessert, and there was seriously no way I could have managed that! My friend ordered the bread pudding from at least half a dozen great sounding dessert selections. It too was huge, topped with chocolate syrup, whipped cream and confectioners sugar.

The service was cheerful, knowledgeable and attentive, and the final tab came to $66 before the tip. The seating was a little tight as it is a small space, and it did get a bit loud when it filled up, but was not too much of an issue, conversation was no problem. All in all I had to smack myself for not having gone to Dish until now. I can truly recommend the establishment, but I do caution you to make reservations as depending on the schedule for shows at the Count Basie, the place can fill up on what would normally be an off night.

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  1. Well as Mark's "companion" for this very enjoyable evening of Food & Entertainment there is not much more I can say that hasn't been said in his excellent review above. I will agree that anyone that wants to experience a really enjoyable Dinner should venture to 13 White Street Redbank NJ and give "DISH" a try you won't be sorry. The only thing I can add to this is a few phone pictures I took of some of our choices......."Dish" gets two Thumbs Up from me!!

    4 Replies
    1. re: Tapas52

      Great job with the review. Dish is one of my favorites.

      1. re: Tapas52

        Glad you were able to get the pic of the grease spot next to the "Short Rib Mountain" plate. :-)

        1. re: Tapas52


          1. re: joonjoon

            joonjoon that's exactly what we said when it was put in front of us !! :)

        2. So glad you both enjoyed your evening!

          Dish is a great place to eat, and that prix fixe deal is a tremendous bargain.

          If I am not eating at North of the Border, then Dish is next on my list.

          I love Red Bank.

          1. I have a buddy from Chicago in town staying in Long Branch and we are meeting him for dinner tonight. This looks like a great option! Unfortunately, they are not open yet so I can't get a reservation! Hope to get through so we can check it out tonight! -mJ

            2 Replies
            1. re: njfoodies

              Dish is one of our favorites, we have been eating here at least every few weeks for some time now. Great food and service in a nice and simple space. A few things to consider:

              - Reservations for 4 or more
              - They open at 5:30 PM
              - BYOB
              - Can get noisy when crowded
              - Don't pass up the homemade chocolate cake or coconut cake if available tonight

              Enjoy ...

              1. re: njfoodies

                +1 on everything Jerzey said (especially the one about not passing on the either of the cakes).

              2. Mark, Happy you loved Dish. I dine there weekly and never, ever have been disappointed. The service is friendly and attentive without being over the top. The entrees are always FRESH, made with quality ingredients, and the desserts are to die for. I never pass up the coconut cake; the the waitress is nice enough to pack half of it for me to eat for breakfast the next day! No better buy in the Red Bank area and the Prix Fixe offerings are done extremely well with no skimping.

                1. Went to Dish last night, truthfully based in =Mark's recommendation. Here are my thoughts: It was a Wednesday night at 7:30 and the place was half full. We were seated at a two top against the wall which as two tops go was basically a mini table. Olives and bread came out and they opened our wine. The olives were delicious and the bread, well we thought the bread might have been a bit dated as it tasted a bit "crusty".

                  We opted for the Prix Fixe, which has to be one of the best value menus around ($25), for the amount of food you recieve. My wife ordered the soup which was excellent and I ordered the mussels. First order came out lukewarm and I had to send them back. Once I recieved the hot order, I must say they were excellent! This said, my original order of mussels came out before my wife's soup, and the waitress said, "who gets the mussels"? How could both dishes not come out at the same time? We had to request water refills numerous times as the three people working there were very busy....checking out their cell phones in the front. Or, going out for a smoke break, as one of our waitresses obviously did as she dropped off our pork chops and reeked of cigarette smell. How hard would it be to take away an empty bread basket, or ask if we needed a refill?

                  The pork chops were huge and outstanding. Cooked perfectly to medium, they were delicious, Also, those maple mashed sweet potatos were amazing. Kudos on this entire dish to Dish!

                  We ordered the included dessert having creme brulee and an outstanding bread pudding. As I said at the beginning of this, an incredible value with excellent food for any price, but for $25 prix fixe, wonderful.

                  When they brought the desserts to the table, they also put down the check. Were they in a rush to get us out of there? Did we want coffee? The place still had four other tables sitting, so the staff wasn't leaving any time soon....so what's with putting down the check a) with dessert, and b) without us asking.

                  Our true only complaint obviously was the three front of house staffers. They really were unprofessional and seemed almost uninterested for the most part. And the young lady that reeked of smoke? Unexcusable. I really think that the owners/chef, should better train their front of house staff. It would make the entire experience complete. The food, really, really good. Looking foward to trying more of the menu.

                  1. From my blog from Friday 03 December (I forgot to post this on here):

                    Met one of my good pal's from back home, John Rueff here since he was in town and doing some work in Long Branch. With its proximity to Red Bank, Dish was the perfect option tonight, so I called earlier in the day and left a message on their machine for a reservation. I then saw their e-mail address on their site, so I e-mailed them and got a reply back, so we were good to go.

                    Got into Red Bank and there was some serious hustle and bustle on Friday night. Parking was a bit tough, and I ended up parking a few blocks down the road across the street from Tiffany's. Not a bad walk in the least, even on a cold December night!

                    John was standing outside as I walked up, and we said hello, and went inside. We were immediately greeted and sat at our table. We had a nice little two top next to a pillar, with another two top next to us. At this point, the restaurant was pretty full, and had a nice little buzz to it. The place looked nice and vibrant! From the red color of the walls on the exterior, to the fresh yellow walls inside, with the blonde floors and tables. The place really was cozy.

                    I reached into the wine bag and ask John if he preferred pinot noir or cabernet sauvignon, and he called for a cabernet. That said, out came a 2003 Stag's Leap Winery Cabernet Sauvignon. Stay tuned for a review of that soon as well.

                    Our waitress came over and opened the wine. I have to say that the stems at Dish are OK at best, and I will remember to bring our own on a return visit. She went over the specials with us, and gave us a few minutes to peruse the menu. Meanwhile, we shot the bull and caught up on old times. So many funny memories!

                    For starters, John had the Cream of Squash soup, and I ended up ordering the calamari. I know, it's calamari, but it sounded good tonight, and it was indeed tasty. The rings were huge, as were the tentacles. Fried golden, brown, and delicious. John said his soup was absolutely amazing as well.

                    For entrees, I ended up going the short ribs route, and these were a rockin'! The portion was absolutely massive, with two giant chunks of meat, served over a maple mashed sweet potato, and some haricot verts and carrots. The short ribs were absolutely awesome, flavorful, and fork tender! I can't believe I forgot to take a picture of these to show just how massive the dish was, but the two were stacked on top of each other and almost as tall as my wine glass. WOO! These were a hit. I am not a big fan of sweet potatoes, but I ate them, and they were tasty.

                    John opted for the rib eye special, and he said it was cooked perfectly, and absolutely flavorful. I can't remember what this was served with, but it looked delicious. It may have been topped with a Roquefort or something else, but again, I can't remember for sure. Seeing how good his steak looked however, I would be hard pressed not to order the NY Strip of Hanger Steak on my next visit!

                    From what I read on Chowhound, we absolutely cannot leave without having dessert. UGH! At this point, I am absolutely stuffed like a pig, and no hungry in the least, but when our server read off the special and I heard bread pudding, how could I resist? It's a favorite of mine, and a staple!

                    The bread pudding came out, and this too was massive! This had a side of whipped cream, and some caramel and chocolate syrup on it. All I can say is wow! This rocked, and had great consistency. It almost reminded me of a croissant, so maybe they use croissants in here? I have no idea, but wow, it rocked!

                    All in all, this is a great little restaurant with a lot of charm, and a great place to bring my wife on a date. It's cozy, intimate, and has great food, great service, and some outstanding desserts! Maybe next time they'll have the coconut cake that I hear is a must try! I hope so! Huge kudos to Dish though! We'll definitely be back in the future! Cheers!

                    Dish - A Restaurant
                    13 White Street
                    Red Bank, NJ
                    Phone: (732)345-7070

                    5 Replies
                      1. re: bgut1

                        Absolutely did! Just bummed a bit that my partner in crime wasn't with me, but that gives us reason to go back! Great place! The bread pudding especially was to die for! -mJ

                        1. re: njfoodies

                          nj- In the future, you must try either the chocolate or the coconut cake if available. They are two of the finest renditions that I have ever tried. In the past I would only order the bread pudding, but since I've been doing pretty well recreating it at home (an easy dish by the way), I rarely order it out. The fact that your better half wasn't with you gives you more reason to return post-haste. Please email me next time you are back in this area as I would love to meet up.

                          1. re: bgut1

                            I actually asked our waitress bgut, and she said they sold out of the chocolate cake, and they didn't have the coconut on the menu that night. Will definitely try thm in the future, and let ya know next time we are back that way. I had no idea you were out there. Heck, I used to work right there at Fort Monmouth! -mJ

                            1. re: njfoodies

                              mJ - I'm sure there will be many more opportunities. Red Bank is so much closer than Bordentown. :)

                    1. We look forward to dining here tomorrow before the Bourdain event. J's probably going to order fish. Any recommendations on the current menu that I can pass along to her (other than save room for dessert!)? Thanks in advance.

                      10 Replies
                      1. re: Foody4life

                        Two of my favorites are the fried spinach appetizer and the short ribs. As for dessert, don't miss the bread pudding and the chocolate or coconut cakes (they are amazing).

                          1. re: bgut1

                            We really enjoyed our dinner here last night. Arrived with a res'v around 6 to an almost full room and snagged a nice solo deuce along the wall. The place filled up within minutes and they were turning folks away.

                            Won't cover what's already been well written above by njfoodies and equal_mark but everything they wrote is spot on. One comment by nj was about the wine glasses. We'd agree that they're pretty average - one size trying to fit all. With all the great bottles (including some big reds) that were being enjoyed around the room, a nicer selection of glasses would be welcomed here. No biggie though.

                            To start, we had the crab cakes and a special of the homemade burrata. J enjoyed her crab cakes which were two deep fried cakes along with a creamy remoulade sauce and mixed greens. I'm not a fan of deep frying crab cakes and was happy I ordered the burrata.

                            The burrata was simply outstanding. Picture a succulent, fresh, soft mozzarella shell with an ultra creamy center - served on two long and hearty slices of rustic, toasted baguette. The perfect crostini. A peppery arugula salad with oil and a well aged dark balsamic was a great complement to the burrata. I'd go back just for this burrata!

                            For entrees, we had the salmon and rack of lamb. Both were served with roasted potatoes along with carrots and haricot verts. J's salmon was a very generous portion which she enjoyed.

                            My pistachio crusted, full rack of lamb was also very good. Glad I went with the full rack as a half would have left me wanting! The rack was cooked to a perfect medium rare and sliced into four double chops for plating. Though I'm not usually a fan of crusting anything on lamb, the combo of pistachio with sprigs of fresh rosemary was a natural complement. A herb infused jus (possibly a lamb and red wine reduction?) finished off the plate. I'd definitely order this again.

                            We asked our waitress about the coconut cake while going thru the menu. She said they didn't have it this evening, but if we call a day ahead, next time, they'd make it. FYI for the future! : )

                            1. re: Foody4life

                              Foody - I'm happy you enjoyed your meal. As for the coconut cake, I dream about it. It's the best I've ever had. Thanks for letting me know that they will make it if you call ahead.

                              1. re: bgut1

                                Anyone know if they are still doing the $25 prixe fix on Tuesdays and Wednesdays?

                                1. re: FoodDude2

                                  I saw a sign in the window last week with the $25 offer.

                                  1. re: Papa Bing

                                    Ate there tonight. I have to tell you this....the food is really, really good. As are their olives. But. I don't know, there's something missing there....and I felt this the last time we were there.....the kitchen puts out wonderful food...everything is extremely tasty....but, the service is just meh....and there seems to be no warmth in the front of the house...I just can't describe it well I think....but there's just no atmosphere. This said, if you want really good food at fair prices, both on and off the prixe fixe, this is a place to go..just know there really is no ambiance at all, and while the staff does their job, they just aren't professionals. it seems they're waitressing to make it thru college or something....without genuinely caring. I know this sounds a bit weird., but it would be wonderful if a pro like Maggie from Bay Ave Trattoria could train the front of the house.

                                    Great food, again, no atmosphere and fair at best service. This said, and knowing what I'd get coming back, I'd come back again...not tomorrow, but again in the future.

                                    Bay Ave Trattoria
                                    122 Bay Ave, Highlands, NJ 07732

                                    1. re: sockster

                                      Sockster....it's possible that the loud acoustics in that small space takes away a bit of warmth in the room also. That's what I felt dining there at Dish...the food is wonderful I enjoyed it alott.. I'll bet an acoustic engineer with some good ideas would definitly help dampen the sound increasing the overall ambiance making for a more enjoyable experience.

                                      1. re: Tapas52

                                        That plus a refinement of the service experience, would make Dish right up there with the best in the area!!

                                        1. re: sockster

                                          Sockster - I agree with all you say. I've noticed the same feeling; however, the last time there we sat by the window and felt better about the experience. BAT has no atmosphere but the staff makes you feel welcome and special.

                        1. We returned from Dish totally disappointed. And, I've just re-read this entire thread to see where we could have gone wrong....I guess our experience was just not on par with what you have all enjoyed. $90.00 for lousy, tiny bits of dry garlic bread and tasteless olive oil with few pretty olives-? The pork chop was huge but hard to slice, not even slightly tender and smothered in the oddest concotion of sweet potatoe puree, tiny braised mushrooms and string styled carrots? Such an odd pairing. Mash & string carrots together-what? The talapia and shrimp sitting on a potatoe and carrot mash was fresh, but just okay overall lacking any interesting flavor. The steak and fries well, steak was lovely, prepared as requested but the fries ice cold. And that was dinner.

                          I couldn't even think about wasting another dollar on dessert and coffee (even though you all raved about Dish's desserts). What a shame. There was well under 20 customers and it took 40 mins for us to receive our entrees. Sorry CH's this was not a good experience and I couldn't recommend Dish to anyone.

                          3 Replies
                          1. re: HillJ

                            We agree with HillJ point for point.

                            I swore off posting on Chowhound for a host of reasons. But I swore, as well, to make exceptions only if an eatery was particularly wonderful or particularly awful. On a third and last visit, we found Dish to be particularly awful.

                            Let's begin with our reservation, the least of our complaints. Why make a reservation when you'll be kept waiting an inordinate amount of time to be seated? There's nowhere to wait save for a five foot square area by the front door where a party of four best be good friends as they'll be jammed together like proverbial sardines. But let's move on to the bread, the stale-tasting, cold bread served before the meal. Enough about the bread. You get the point.

                            We suggest you try the Flash Fried Spinach appetizer only if you bring along a pound of unpopped popcorn and plan to pop it in the excess oil that literally dripped off the spinach leaves. When trying to eat the ill conceived mess, unless you've got a plate-to-mouth move as fast as a Wild West gunslinger's, you're likely to drip said oil all over yourself.

                            The entrees, too, bordered on the inedible. A rib eye steak with melted Gorgonzola arrived with the cheese already cold and congealed enough to have broken the teeth of a hungry mouse who'd snatched it from a trap. Speaking of traps, the tuna, ordered to come medium rare, arrived nearly raw, it's tough, inner sinews readily trapping themselves between our teeth. Most 'bites' of the foul tasting fish found their way into the table napkin. Lastly, the Gnocchi may have been homemade but they were badly overcooked, and the sauce a tasteless red glop that might have come out of a giant sized can bought at Costco

                            Dine at Dish at your own risk. We won't be heading back anytime soon. No. Make that ever. This was our third bad experience there and enough is enough.

                            1. re: mmgpsych

                              mmgpsych, thank you for stepping into the not great experience pool w/me. Although I am sad to hear your last few Dish experiences were equally dreadful, I'm now less inclined to believe mine was an isolated case. Like you, I hesitated to write anything here at first but our dinner was so completely different than what's posted in this thread, I felt it only fair to offer a recent account to NJ CH's. Shame, really.