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Monmouth County birthday dinner suggestions please.

EL7 Nov 30, 2011 05:34 PM

We are willing to travel for good food. We are not into fancy, but really want good food. We love Shirin,Wonderland Seafood, Ming Ying Chinese take out in Long Branch, NIkkos Taverna, As you can see my preference is ethnic cooking. I do not like Indian, or spicy foods. Suggestions much appreciated. Seafood would also be great.

  1. fershore Dec 3, 2011 05:46 AM

    Pho Le, Broad Street, Red Bank, for Vietnamese?

    1. s
      SusieQQ Dec 3, 2011 07:41 AM

      Taka in Asbury Park would be my recommendation:


      1. Tapas52 Dec 3, 2011 07:42 AM

        Shirin cafe in Manalapan...


        2 Replies
        1. re: Tapas52
          bgut1 Dec 5, 2011 10:59 PM

          Tapas - Excellent suggestion. I have to keep reminding myself to get back to this fabulous restaurant.

          1. re: bgut1
            RGR Dec 6, 2011 08:01 AM

            b., If you are thinking of going to Shirin, give me a shout. It's been ages since Mr. R. and I have been there, and we'd love to go with you. :)

            Btw, the o.p. mentioned that s/he loves Shirin.


        2. m
          maryanne06 Dec 3, 2011 07:58 AM

          Fish in Asbury Park...the best! www.fishasburypark.com

          1 Reply
          1. re: maryanne06
            bgut1 Dec 5, 2011 10:53 PM

            maryanne06 - Fish .... really? Both mine and other Hound's reviews were less than stellar.


          2. Angelina Dec 3, 2011 08:03 AM

            Via 45 ~ Red Bank


            4 Replies
            1. re: Angelina
              seal Dec 4, 2011 06:34 AM

              +1 on Via 45. Not asian, but ethnically mediteranean instead. More and more if we are not going to Nicholas we find ourselves at Via 45.

              1. re: seal
                bgut1 Dec 5, 2011 10:51 PM

                Seal - On your recommendation alone I am making an effort to try Via 45. I tried to get in this past weekend but they were booked. I must however admit to having some low expectations as I was not impressed with the chef's prior restaurant Vivere. We shall see.

                1. re: bgut1
                  seal Dec 6, 2011 01:17 AM

                  Looking forward to your review. Enjoy your meal.

                  1. re: bgut1
                    RGR Dec 6, 2011 08:05 AM

                    I find it hard to believe that there's actually an Italian restaurant in the area that's serving stellar food. But if Angelina and seal think so, I'm putting it on my pathetically short NJ "go to" list.


              2. e
                EL7 Dec 4, 2011 06:06 AM

                Much thanks! Great suggestions! I really appreciate your help.

                1. j
                  joonjoon Dec 6, 2011 09:19 AM

                  Have you been to ShangHai Bun in Matawan? If you don't mind dives, it's a great place for a birthday party. Super delicious and inexpensive. I'd say it's one of the "musts" in Monmouth county when it comes to ethnic food.

                  8 Replies
                  1. re: joonjoon
                    foodislove1958 Dec 7, 2011 07:35 AM

                    hey joon..I finally tried ShangHai Bun this past weekend for my daughters birthday, She loves Chinese food and we weren't disappointed...in the food anyways! At one point I truly felt like I was in a Seinfeld skit. Having said that, I would definatley reomend the food here...but most importantly an instruction sheet on what and where. First off, we went for dinner...6 persons, given 3 lunch menus and 3 forks,,,more like just dropped off casually at the table. Second,,,for any condiment or beverage it is self serve. Kinda figured this out via observation. Third, communication barrior. The food delivered...everything at once including Dim Sum and appetizers...kinda overwhelming. I will say however that each dish was amazing, Scallion pancake, right on..crisp flaky and chewy all at once. Standard Chinese dishes above par like those at NEMO in Keyport. The steamed buns were amazing, caution however that the inside had piping hot broth inside, so hot in fact I wore most of it on my shirt! lol Noodle bowl if Spicy Beef a little heavy on the five spice but definatley a great thing for a chlly December night. Would I eat there again? Sure for lunch...but for takeout definately will be back.

                    1. re: foodislove1958
                      joonjoon Dec 7, 2011 09:05 AM

                      It's definitely not your average restaurant, that's for sure...glad you enjoyed it! Service isn't always the friendliest though. lol

                      Keep in mind they have 2 menus at SHB, one has the typical American fare, and the other has the "authentic" dishes.

                      1. re: joonjoon
                        equal_Mark Dec 7, 2011 09:38 AM

                        We found the SOP at Shanghai Bun is to grab a menu from the counter when you walk in (Making sure as Joon pointed out, to get the "good one"), take a seat at a table and circle the items you wish to order. Then hand the menu to one of the servers as they hustle by...

                        1. re: joonjoon
                          tomwocat Dec 7, 2011 10:40 AM

                          Re: Shanghai Bun

                          I've been to Shanghai Bun only once so I admit to being a neophyte. Can you make some recommendations for a newbie? I enjoy vegetarian fare, but am not averse to meat selections on occasion. Thanks for your consideration!

                          1. re: tomwocat
                            EL7 Dec 7, 2011 12:44 PM

                            We ended up at Nemo where the Sushi eaters were thrilled and I enjoyed Chinese. Via would have been my choice but I got out voted. I have been there before much thanks to this board, and really liked it, but forgot about it.
                            Now, about Shanghai Bun! I like that but did not know there are two menus. Are they both in English? Is the good one in Chinese and English? And I loved the comment " if you don't mind dives". I am a food snob! All I care about is good food!
                            I would even go to a fancy place of the food were great!! Much thanks for all your help. I am enjoying discovering Monmouth County! We are new to NJ and I am finding good food thanks to reading here and I am really grateful for your suggestions.

                            1. re: EL7
                              joonjoon Dec 9, 2011 09:52 AM

                              EL, both menus at SHB are in English, and almost everything on the other menu is excellent, you really can't go wrong. Where in Monmouth county are you located?

                              1. re: joonjoon
                                EL7 Dec 10, 2011 06:39 AM

                                Hi Joonjoon, thanks for your help. We are in Farmingdale. We are willing to travel for good food ! I like trying new restaurants and really appreciate the suggestions. We went to SHB once and thought it was pretty good but that was years ago. So I look forward to going again and this time knowing what to do and enjoying the improvements!

                            2. re: tomwocat
                              joonjoon Dec 9, 2011 09:56 AM

                              Hey tomwocat, there're lots of good recommendations in this thread:


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