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Sep 5, 2011 09:34 PM

Rooneys Long Branch. Really?

I had dinner at Rooneys tonight (not my choice). I had been there in the past & it was always mediocre at best. First , I could not believe how expensive it is. Now, I do not mind paying a lot for my food at a place like Nicholas, where I know I am going to have a great food experience. But I was skeptical as I read Rooneys menu. $45 for lobster risotto? $40 for a piece of halibut? $59 for crab legs? I ended up ordering the broiled seafood dish. It was okay if you don't mind overcooked seafood & bland rice. Add in the stale dinner rolls & the dirty bathroom to round out my sad dining experience. On a positive note, the view of the ocean was wonderful.

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  1. Savvy diners in Northern Monmouth County know that Rooney's is a much better choice for lunch rather than for dinner. Lunch prices are quite reasonable and the ocean view is terrific.

    2 Replies
    1. re: scrappyone

      Savvy diners in Northern (and Western) Monmouth County know that while the ocean view is gorgeous, it doesn't matter that the food at lunch is cheaper than at dinner because it's still horrible!

      1. re: RGR

        At a diner I asked for a piece of cake and the waitress brought me a huge slice, probably 1/4 of the whole cake. As she put it in front of me she whispered, "it isn't very good, so I gave you extra."

    2. Thanks for the tip, however it wasn't just the price of the food but the quality also. I think I will stick to drinks at the bar and dinner elsewhere.

      1 Reply
      1. re: DinnerChick11

        Rooney's is the perfect example of the Jersey Shore inverse seafood quality rule; The quality of seafood offered is inversely related to it's proximity to the water.

      2. It's a fine place for drinks but I'd never eat there.

        4 Replies
        1. re: Bob Martinez

          even the seagulls don't eat there!

          We learned our lesson at Rooney's a while ago (before pier village). It's really too bad as they have a great location, abundant parking and so much potential...

          1. re: Foody4life

            Now I read this!

            Friends suggested this place for lunch. The view was incredible. So was the food.

            Whoops that was a typo I meant ... inedible.

            1. re: EL7

              nothing to add, except a big


              We went once, never again.

              1. re: EL7

                These are the posts that make me wish that CH had a "like" button. Very funny.

          2. Went there last night after about a year DinnerChick indicated I had sticker shock at the prices. Rooney's was NEVER fine dinning....however they have priced themselves in the outter realm of restaurants and the quality, size, presentation etc etc fall far short of what they are charging. I can easily say we will NEVER be back for dinner after this pricey experience.

            12 Replies
            1. re: jrvedivici

              What was your opinion of the food?

              1. re: fershore

                I had the Seafood Fra Diavolo (I am more a shellfish eater than a filet fish person) @ $42. the menu stated it has “Lobster Meat” as well as the variety of other shell fish. The carefully selected words of “Lobster Meat” is very accurate because there were a few pieces of chopped claw mean (in my opinion) mixed in with the 4 shrimp and excessive calamari. The flavor / taste of the meal was good and quality etc…..but it’s a pasta dish at $42. I would hope for a meal that was fulfilling….not one that I ate (after a house salad) and still had room to share a desert.

                There was nothing neither exceptional nor terrible about the meal. My objection is at $42 there should be an abundance of seafood OR and abundance of pasta…..but the portion was particularly sparse for the amount being charged.

                Another example that caught my eye, one of their signature dishes the “Angry Lobster” a two pound lobster in their “Angry” sauce. I’ve had this dish plenty of times in the past and it has always been excellent. The price $65. for a two pound lobster…..steep but not unheard of for a 2lbs at the Jersey Shore. But add pasta to the dish….$5. extra? Your paying $65. for a 2lbs lobster and they are charging an extra NOT $2 NOT $3. BUT
                $5. for ¼ lbs of linguini? I’m not a cheap person…….and I have plenty of experience in the restaurant business but charging an extra $5. on top of a $65. meal… excessive and greedy. That pasta costs them $.25/$.35 per serving.

                You can get a similar view at many places down the Jersey Shore and not have to pay the prices they are charging for food that is average, not exceptional. The ambiance is typical water front Jersey Shore but certainly NOT that of fine dining. The service is NOT fine dining……I just have a hard time with what I feel is gouging the customer.

                That’s my $.02….which in today’s economy is probably only worth about $.01

              2. re: jrvedivici

                Rooney's is in obvious competition with the folks down in Pier Village, which is a shame. Pier Village is an assembly of overpriced crap that thrives on the concept of location trumping quality food and service. It confirms =Mark's Inverse Seafood Corollary which postulates that the quality of seafood in Monmouth County is inversely proportional to it's closeness to the water. This used to be countered by Doris & Ed's, but they seem to be history now.

                1. re: equal_Mark

                  The demise of Doris and Ed's is a true shame.....the initial reason for closing was due to storm damage I believe but there is no indication they plan on least that I have heard of.

                  1. re: jrvedivici

                    =Mark have you ever tried Shoals Lobster in Port Monmouth? Picnic tables that you share outside with the insects, weeds, and other people but great, fresh seafood at an equally great price! My only complaint is it is too hot in summer, too cold in winter, and too far for take out. So if you go at just the right weather and bring can handle the mosquitos it is a lovely day!

                    We went to Spike's fish market. Expensive with similar atmosphere only inside picnic tables. Is there any place at the Shore that is similar to Shoals?

                    Also any suggestions for a great meal with a view ? Food being worth the money, though a bargain always make the food taste better!

                    1. re: EL7

                      Highlawn Pavilion, in W. Orange, is known for its spectacular view of the NYC skyline. We've never eaten there, but the executive chef is Mitchell Altholz., and we loved his superb cuisine when he was chef/owner of Jocelyne's. He's been at Highlawn for several years. Not surprising that the food he is serving there receives high praise.


                      1. re: EL7

                        At the Shore, the best food you're going to find with a view is at the Atlantic Bar & Grill in Seaside.

                        1. re: MGZ

                          If you want a view of the water, but don't mind if it's the river instead of the ocean, I think Sallie Tee's is open again.

                          1. re: cantkick

                            Thank you Cantkick! Yes, ocean or river either one works for me. Will try Sallie Tee's much thanks!

                            1. re: EL7

                              If we're talking about a water view, I rgularly go for lunch to Mr. C's in Allenhurst. I sit at the bar order a Befeter Bloody Mary and a Hamburger with fries. Not in the summer though!


                              1. re: rprdds

                                Ditto Mr. C's - Her bar has the best ocean view in NJ

                                1. re: carlylecat

                                  Thank you all! I just read these additional great suggestions. I am looking forward to trying. Much appreciated!