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Heading to Blue Bottle Cafe - What to get?

Well, it's that time again - when my two BFFs and I decide it's time for a "grown-up dinner" (you know, the works - appetizer, entree, dessert - at a fine dining establishment). We love the Blue Bottle Cafe because of its great food and convenient location. This will probably be our last dinner there for some time - I'm moving and another is leaving the country.

Has anybody been lately and, if so, any good recommendations from the current menu?

Thanks in advance:)

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Blue Bottle Cafe
101 E Broad St, Hopewell, NJ 08525

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  1. I'm a little late to Heatherb's request but after our visit last night, I have several recommendations :)
    We were lucky to get a 7:15 reservation after a call during the week. We were looking forward to the new menu and were not disappointed.
    Starters were a fantastic duck confit salad with frisee, spinach, duck confit, dried cranberries,
    French beans, duck cracklings and port wine vinaigrette. A substantial and delicious salad.
    I had a tasty and playful "Ham, Egg & Cheese" warm white and green asparagus, serrano ham, roast garlic croutons, truffled pecorino, sous vide farm egg and champagne vinaigrette.

    Blue Bottle is known for several dishes, the gnocchi is one of them. We split an order last night and they are spectacular. Housemade goat cheese gnocchi, with sauteed spinach, applewood smoked bacon, golden beets and cider enhanced vegetable broth. Melt in your mouth tender, the ingredients paired together perfectly.
    Entrees were also top notch, the scallops were nicely seared, with forbidden black rice (suppose to be extremely high in antioxidants) asparagus, blood orange salsa, carrot cardamon puree.
    Pan seared breast of Pekin duckling was a thick filet, medium rare, with roasted purple fingerling potatoes, Swiss chard, sultana raisins and honey ginger glaze.
    We should have stopped at this point :) but finished with a warm chocolate fudge cake, topped with ice cream and with a peanut butter anglaise.

    Important to mention the service at BB is always professional, friendly and helpful. Everything is always in place, servers working together to make for a very pleasurable dining experience, not just a night out. With nicer weather here (fingers crossed) its a great time to give BB a visit.

    http://www.thebluebottlecafe.com/inde...

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    Blue Bottle Cafe
    101 E Broad St, Hopewell, NJ 08525

    10 Replies
    1. re: tom246

      We had a res'v for last night as well but had to cancel in the am due to one of our friends not feeling well. The gnocchi sounds great (maybe have to get a double order!), always look forward to it here. Now we really have to go again. Thanks for the report.

      1. re: Foody4life

        Those gnocchi were so good that my wife, who is a great cook, is determined to give them a try fully knowing that gnocchi is all about "feel" and not really a set recipe.
        If they are half as good as what Aaron serves, we will be happy :)

      2. re: tom246

        Went last night for dinner. Had the Blue Bottle Salad which is a constant on the menu and always delish. Had the flounder with succotash which was absolutely wonderful. The succotash was not your grandma's succotash! It was so fresh and crispy and colorful. The fish was cooked nicely and seasoned perfectly, and the broth was heavenly. Ended with the lime cheesecake which was good and refreshing, but not stellar. The flounder was definitely the highlight of the evening for me.
        My dining partners raved about the zucchini canneloni, the scallop entree, and the new gnocchi preparation. Another homerun by BBC.

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        Blue Bottle Cafe
        101 E Broad St, Hopewell, NJ 08525

        1. re: madgreek99

          Like the title of the thread says, "what to get" at Blue Bottle is a good question as there are so many tempting choices. Menu XXll has been in effect for a few weeks, it reads well and tastes even better.
          Looking for a different bread service, Blue Bottle has an assortment, raisin fennel, whole wheat and French bread. Served with creamy butter its always nice start to what is coming.
          A basmati crusted crabcake with yuzu ginger aioli, "cucumber noodles" and toasted rice vinegar was just super. The noodles were so unique, appearance and feel of pasta noodles with crunch and delicious flavor from the ginger and rice vinegar. The potato gnocchi were a treat, they were a bit smaller in size than normal but tender as ever and were perfect with diced Japanese eggplant, fresh tomato saute and housemade herbed ricotta cheese. The gnocchi and crabcake were excellent starters. If your yearning heirloom tomatoes, BB's version looked really good with arugula, bacon vinaigrette, gorganzola and crispy lardons.

          For entrees we had a perfect rare yellowfin tuna, black truffle mashed potatoes, chanterelle mushrooms, spinach and pinot noir reduction. Other entree was the Duo of pork, molasses glazed pork tenderloin and braised shoulder, shiitake wild rice, sauteed kale and peach compote. Shared both and really enjoyed the varied flavors and texture of each.

          Finished off our feast with a couple of excellent desserts. Cappuccino creme brulee with gingersnap cookies sounds simple but is indulgent and light at the same time. For the chocolate fans out there (we are!) chocolate and raspberry sacher torte with chocolate ice cream and raspberry coulis more than satisfied our chocolate urge. A 2007 Toulouse Pinot Noir paired well with all the food. Have a special bottle that needs decanting, BB will take care of that service for you.

          The Blue Bottle has been around for 5+ years, the change of menus with the seasons keeps the cuisine updated and fresh. Friendly attentive service and excellent innovative cuisine makes BB a great dining choice. Go enjoy Menu XXll while you can.

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          Blue Bottle Cafe
          101 E Broad St, Hopewell, NJ 08525

          1. re: tom246

            Read this from where I am living now in Denver and felt my first pangs of regret since leaving Jersey:) I'll be back in October for a couple weeks on business, and I'll be sure to stop in at the BB. I'm thinking they'll be on their fall menu by then though...

            1. re: Heatherb

              Hey Heatherb, we miss you on the Jersey board. Hope your liking Denver (whats not to like:) and the chow is good.

              1. re: tom246

                Thanks, Tom246. I've eaten at some great places, actually:) And just down the street is a Philly cheesesteak place that's actually quite good, so I'm pretty happy, foodwise. Ok, the pizza is... interesting. But otherwise, the chow is great! I will, however, be hitting DeLorenzo's and the Blue Bottle when I get back in October:)

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                Blue Bottle Cafe
                101 E Broad St, Hopewell, NJ 08525

            2. re: tom246

              Tom, have you every had lunch at the BB? Thinking of going later this week and would welcome any suggestions.

              1. re: ambrose

                Ambrose, been many times for dinner, never for lunch. Give us a report if you decide to go.

                1. re: tom246

                  After perusing the on-line menu I'm rethinking having lunch at the Blue Bottle. The prices seem over the top (an extra $6 to add chicken to a salad?) so it will probably be dinner for us. Like you, we've been to dinner many times and always enjoyed it. I wonder why their lunch prices are so outrageous.

        2. If your in town Heatherb, be sure you get to Blue Bottle before you head back home. The new menu is in place (number XXlll if your counting) and it will run through the end of the year. Our meal last night was excellent from start to finish. While munching on that delicious variety of bread, especially the fennel raisin, we were talking about how difficult it must be to totally revamp a menu every three months. Would be pretty stressful for this novice chef :).

          For starters we had Prince Edward Island mussels, stewed sofrito of peppers, tomato, onion, garlic, sherry and extra virgin olive oil. Mussels were tender and the broth was full of flavor. Between the bread and my soup spoon not a drop was left. Chef Aaron Philipson makes some of the best gnocchi you will ever find, this version fits the fall season. Sweet potato gnocchi with carmelized brussel sprouts, red pearl onions, sage brown butter. Just delicious.

          Nice variety of entrees offered, we had: Braised ragout of wild boar, mirepoix vegetables, veal stock reduction over imported papardelle pasta. A big yum for this dish. DW had the scallop preparation, pan seared day boat scallops, baby carrots, butter braised cabbage, shiitake mushrooms, toasted pecans, tangerine cream. Tastes as good as it sounds, the tangerine cream is mild and very complimentary.

          Desserts are always creative at Blue Bottle and Pastry Chef Rory Philipson has an impressive line up to try. Where to start, we decided on an individual lemon meringue pie, the crust was tender and flaky, filling was tangy and it sat on a berry coulis. Classic delicious dessert. Also had the famous pumpkin roulade with cream cheese frosting and caramel sauce. Waistline be damned, this was worth it :). Rory is accepting orders for the Pumpkin Roulade for Thanksgiving through November 19 if you are interested.
          BB was very busy last night but service is always efficient and refined making for a friendly comfortable dinner.
          http://www.thebluebottlecafe.com/inde...

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          Blue Bottle Cafe
          101 E Broad St, Hopewell, NJ 08525

          2 Replies
          1. re: tom246

            Thanks, tom246! I was just looking at the menu online before I saw your post and started to drool. No joke. I'm hoping to get there, now that I'm here - glad to see the boar was good, as that's what I'd fixated on:D

            Going to try the new Marsilio's location tonight!

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            Marsilio's Restaurant
            541 Roebling Ave, Trenton, NJ 08611

            1. re: tom246

              Tom, it's funny, my wife and I were at the Blue Bottle about three weeks ago and had virtually the same dinner. The mussels, the wild boar ragout. Both were excellent. This really is a great place. The hostess is nasty, but once you get seated you're in a good shape. We had read all the great reviews and Blue Bottle lived up to them.

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              Blue Bottle Cafe
              101 E Broad St, Hopewell, NJ 08525