Jersey Shore Food - Manasquan Area (moved from Manhattan board)
So i'm heading down to the beach for 2 weeks and want to stock up on real good eats while i'm down there. Would love to find some kind of local butcher for bbq stuff and/or a bakery with fresh bread. My go-to place for fresh seafood is Spike's....that place is awesome. Any recommendations are greatly appreciated!
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Welcome, I hope you enjoy your stay. The water's been pretty warm (low to mid 70s) and clean for a while now, though the summer doldrums have meant it's been pretty flat. All that rain last night shouldn't change much.
Since there appeared to be two nearly identical posts (http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/799581) on this topic, I'll just respond here and try to consolidate.
If by "bbq stuff" you mean large cuts like brisket or pork shoulders, I am afraid that you will need to go to a supermarket. The ShopRite on 34 in Wall normally carries pork ribs, shoulders, and at least brisket flats. The A&P on 35 in Wall is the only place around that I've ever been able to get whole packers from, and they also normally carry the pork cuts mentioned.
If, instead, you are simply looking for nice cuts of meat, then I would suggest Tom Bailey's Market in Spring Lake. They offer Niman ranch chops, decent sausages, and prime steaks - including a couple dry aged cuts. Certainly better quality than either supermarket noted above.
Fresh bread can be found, as LBNJNY notes, at Joe Leone's in Sea Girt (they also have a Point Pleasant location), but it is an Italian specialty store, not a bakery. There is a Freedman's bakery in Belmar which has several breads, as well as hard rolls, available. Although even a bit further north, the bakery on Main Street in Bradley Beach probably offers the best Italian bread in the area.
For fresh produce, you will find a Farmers' Market in Manasquan (Main & Miller Preston Way) on Thursday from 9 to 2. There is another in Point Pleasant on Sundays (Train Station parking lot - northbound side). Matt's Farm Market on 71 in Belmar is open 7 days and is a very good spot for both local and out of state fruits and vegetables.
If you don't feel like driving, just need staples (milk, juice, Kingsford briquettes, etc.), or don't care that much what you throw on the grill, there is an Acme (affectionately referred to as Crapme by generations of local children) on the corner of Main & 71. It's pretty dinky, but it's close and it's been there forever.
I'll second MGZ's recommendations, especially Matt's Farm Market. They have a fabulous selection of heirloom tomatoes, from tiny cherry tomato size to some almost as big as your head. They also have a nice selection of other NJ grown produce- they say they grow it on their own farms but who knows. The peaches have been especially good this year.
Pick up tomatoes and basil at Matt's, mozz and bread at Joe Leone's, and a bottle of wine at Eagan's (attached to Joe's) and you're good to go.
I think the bakery in Bradley Beach that MGZ referred to is Del Ponte's (M pls correct me if I am wrong). We are quite fond of their raspberry and chocolate cigars and the cannoli filled lobster claws.
Also in Bradley Beach, if you don't feel like cooking and like truly authentic Mexican food (chilaquiles, lamb or tongue tacos, tortas, etc) stop in at The Bradley Cafe, 2 blocks north of Del Pontes. They close at 2 and are closed Tuesday's but are great for a hearty breakfast or lunch.
Just personal bias but I am not a fan of Freedman's.
If you are looking for a local coffee, tea and sweets place, I recommend Sweet Tease on Main Street in Squan. Everything is made in-house and the people are friendly.
Looks like a nice long range forecast. Hope you enjoy your visit.
400 Richmond Ave, Point Pleasant Beach, NJ 08742
Del Ponte's, right. Total aside, but, when I was a kid I took many an evening train home from school. When stopped at the Bradley station, tired and hungry, my view to the east was dominated by the giant glowing letters "MASTERBAKERS." My brain still wants to think that's the name of the place all these years later.
Drew's Market is an excellent butcher/specialties on Rt. 71 in Spring Lake Heights, though if you want something like brisket you may have to call a day or two ahead... check out the "butter steak," which I believe is cut from the top round, soft as butter (get it?) and needs just a few minutes on a hot grill
2407 State Route 71 Ste 6, Spring Lake, NJ 07762