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Looking For a Hopping Place In the Clifton Area With Great Food

michele cindy Jun 7, 2011 12:07 PM

Meeting 4 friends from grammar school. Clifton seems to be in the middle of all of our homes. I'd like somewhere that is hopping, has great food, large portions a plus. Any cuisine except Asian. Any suggestions?

  1. michele cindy Jul 19, 2011 06:32 AM

    We ended up going to Zinburger. Overall, I wouldn't go out of my way to go there. If I lived nearby, I'd go there with the kids. Service was good, but rushed. Not enough apps. Burger was ordered MR, delivered MW, normally I would send it back, but I was having such a nice time with my friends I just ate it. Zuchinni fries, were limp and greasy, truffle fries were tasty but also not crisp. Drinks were good. Thanks for the advise everyone! Hope to get this party moved so we can go to one of the better suggestions.

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    Zinburger
    850 State Route 3, Clifton, NJ 07012

    1. michele cindy Jun 28, 2011 08:51 AM

      My friend is set on going to "Zinburger". I haven't been there, the food looks pretty good, but it looks too family friendly for what I had in mind. Any thoughts on this place?

      1 Reply
      1. re: michele cindy
        f
        FoodExpression Jun 28, 2011 10:41 AM

        Zinburger may be the best of the burger trend restaurants. I am a big fan. Royal Warsaw is awesome if you want pierogies and Zyviec beer.

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        Royal Warsaw
        871 River Dr, Elmwood Park, NJ 07407

        Zinburger
        850 State Route 3, Clifton, NJ 07012

      2. b
        bifpocaroba Jun 9, 2011 12:04 PM

        You might also want to look into.

        Egan and Sons, Montclair is also a good place. good food and hops.

        http://www.egannsons.com/

        Caldwell- Luce

        I also suggest Calandras in Caldwell. Food is ok but its certainly a scene.

        http://calandrasitalianvillage.com

        I think Shannon Rose is too loud and Raymonds is also.

        3 Replies
        1. re: bifpocaroba
          m
          maryanne06 Jun 9, 2011 01:05 PM

          +1 for Nichola's in Totowa....great food and terrific service. It's BYOB. You and your friends won't be disappointed.

          1. re: bifpocaroba
            Curlz Jun 11, 2011 07:50 AM

            Good call on Egan's...and they have a parking lot behind the restaurant.

            ETA: If you're looking to be away from (young) kids, don't go there too early. Any night.

            1. re: Curlz
              r
              ragboys Jun 11, 2011 03:08 PM

              Bar Cara in Bloomfield fits the criteria

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              Bar Cara
              1099 Broad St, Bloomfield, NJ 07003

          2. phDuh Jun 8, 2011 06:28 PM

            My votes are for Sabor Peru in Rutherford (BYOB), and Royal Warsaw in Elmwood Park (right off of Route 21)

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            Royal Warsaw
            871 River Dr, Elmwood Park, NJ 07407

            Sabor Peru
            8 Highland Cross, Rutherford, NJ 07070

            1. n
              NJfoodLover Jun 7, 2011 05:39 PM

              Nicolas in Totowa is a pretty nice Italian Restaurant. It is BYO so I am not sure if you are looking for a full bar.
              http://www.nicolasristorante.net/

              3 Replies
              1. re: NJfoodLover
                michele cindy Jun 8, 2011 03:21 AM

                Lol! I was reviewing the menu, and thought, what's with the 100.00 entrees??? I realized it was their catering section... Thanks this place might fit the bill. Just curious, would Montclair be a good location? I haven't been there is a really long time. I'm in Rockland, the rest of the diners are in Union Co. I've got to check out Bistro 55 too.

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

                1. re: michele cindy
                  Curlz Jun 8, 2011 05:40 PM

                  Sorry I forgot to mention the annoying website ! Re: Montclair, I'm a big (okay, huge) fan of Blu, which is on Bloomfield Avenue-- www.restaurantblu.com . You will have a spectacular meal with some of the most interesting combinations you've seen in a loooong time, and you won't believe how great the prices are. BUT--it's a small place (albeit hopping, imo), portions are fine, but they're not huge, and it's BYO--not sure if that matters. Montclair can be tough in terms of parking, but there's a lot on the corner of Bloomfield and Valley as well as metered spots on Bloomfield. I've never had a problem finding a spot, but ymmv. If you're game to go outside of the original area requested, I'd also recommend Stamna Greek Taverna in Bloomfield, right on the Montclair border, and right off of the GSP, which might be easy for everyone. GREAT food, BYO, definitely hopping (I just came home from dinner there and there was a line out the door--on a freaking WEDNESDAY), you can eat family style or order your own entrees, and also a bargain. Add in a few cute Greek waiters, and what could be bad? :-) They do take reservations, so def make one.

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                  Stamna Restaurant
                  1049 Broad St, Bloomfield, NJ 07003

                  1. re: michele cindy
                    menton1 Jun 8, 2011 05:52 PM

                    Your criteria made me think of Raymond's in Montclair. Certainly better than a red sauce Italian...

                2. Curlz Jun 7, 2011 04:47 PM

                  Hopping as in, noisy/bar crowd, or hopping as in, busy but you can have conversation...? Shannon Rose can get overpoweringly loud, imo, and I don't usually complain about noise levels. That said, they have some decent pub food (burgers on english muffins, fish and chips, etc.), but you'll also be in with a mostly 20-something crowd--and if it's a weekend, they have DJs and bands that start at 9-10pm.

                  You could go a bit more upscale and try Bistro 55 in Rochelle Park on Rt 17...

                  Sabor Peru in Rutherford is lots of food, the food is terrific, and it's BYO...

                  For the record, I cannot believe that Tommy recommended Park & Orchard. UGH.

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                  Shannon Rose
                  98 Kingsland Rd, Clifton, NJ

                  Park & Orchard Restaurant
                  240 Hackensack St, East Rutherford, NJ 07073

                  Sabor Peru
                  8 Highland Cross, Rutherford, NJ 07070

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

                  3 Replies
                  1. re: Curlz
                    michele cindy Jun 7, 2011 04:58 PM

                    To Clarify, I don't mind having to wait a little for a table. By hopping, I mean the staff are on their toes, the patrons are having a good time, and general feeling when you go in is a good one. Nothing stuffy, something casual fun, Any old fashioned red sauce Italian come to mind?

                    1. re: Curlz
                      tommy Jun 7, 2011 05:12 PM

                      I don't care for the place, but for reasons I cannot explain, many do. I figured since the request was for "big portions" and "hopping place" that the "good food" part could probably be deemphasized a bit. In fact, if I were meeting people from geographically dispersed areas, and there was a "no asian" clause, and it was going to be, to my mind, more about the company and the fun, then I would think P&O could be a consideration. I might end up there myself in that type of situation. Would I be happy with the food? Probably not. Would I end up having a good time and would my guests enjoy the evening? Pretty good chance.

                      Good call on Bistro 55!

                      ETA: I only recommended Shannon Rose because you've told me it is good! :)

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

                      1. re: tommy
                        michele cindy Jun 8, 2011 03:27 AM

                        Bistro 55 looks good, but they have a really annoying website with music. Thanks for the ideas!

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

                    2. n
                      NJfoodLover Jun 7, 2011 04:20 PM

                      There is a place someone just emailed me about but I haven't had a chace to try. It is called Encore and it is right next to willowbrook mall in wayne which isn't far from Clifton. They have a big menu.

                      Here is the website http://www.encorerestaurantlounge.com/

                      Sushi Lounge has Asian food and gathers a crowd near the bar area. I have had meals there and other times it is just ok.

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                      Sushi Lounge
                      200 Hudson Street, Hoboken, NJ 07030

                      2 Replies
                      1. re: NJfoodLover
                        tommy Jun 7, 2011 04:32 PM

                        Sushi Lounge is a Japanese/sushi restaurant, to be more precise.

                        1. re: NJfoodLover
                          w
                          wblorch Jun 8, 2011 11:22 AM

                          NJfoodLover I agree the food at the Totowa location of Sushi Lounge is hit or miss and the watered down menu (asian inspired vs japanese) leaves a lot to be desired.

                        2. tommy Jun 7, 2011 04:06 PM

                          Large portions and great food more often than not mutually exclusive. You might consider The Park an Orchard in Rutherford. Or the Shannon Rose or Franklin Steakhouse in Nutley. Or Sushi Lounge in Totowa, although I guess that's Asian..

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                          Shannon Rose
                          98 Kingsland Rd, Clifton, NJ

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