Psst... We're working on the next generation of Chowhound! View >
HOME > Chowhound > New Jersey >
Feb 12, 2013 10:52 AM

Sunday Brunch-Jersey Shore

Hi All! I know there are multiple threads about Sunday brunch, but I was hoping to get some recommendations based on my specifics. I live near Asbury and my friend is in Pier Village. We've done Avenue and Turning Point and are looking to try something new.

We're not too particular, but we do love brunch cocktails. We are looking for a place either with a bar (but cheaper drinks than Avenue) or a BYOB for mimosa's.

Anywhere in our around the area of the Jersey Shore would be great! Look forward to hearing your suggestions! Thank you!

  1. Click to Upload a photo (10 MB limit)
  1. I would go to Porta.

    911 Kingsley St Asbury Park, NJ 07712
    (732) 776-7661

    The Grilled Stone Fruit and/or the Braised Lentils dish are excellent.

    9 Replies
    1. re: Bosmer

      ooh Porta I haven't found anything I don't like at Porta!

        1. re: fershore

          Make that 4! The lemon ricotta pancakes ARE. TO. DIE. FOR. So's the bloody mary, for that matter...

          1. re: Curlz

            Went to Porta last Sunday for brunch around 1:00 PM. Very easy to get to in a quiet, but barren neighborhood. Could not sit at the bar as preferred because it was filled, so we were seated at one of the large picnic tables. Waitress greeted us immediately, but it took 15 minutes to be served a beer and a cocktail.

            The wife ordered the Margharita pizza and I had the Ricotta Pnacakes. Both plates arrived at the table hot (my wife does not like warm or cold food) and were very tasty. The Maple syrup for the pancakes made the dish, in my opinion, and the fresh cheese on the pizza was the key ingredient for that item.

            They had a three-piece jazz band playing in the corner which provided beautiful tunes that were not too loud, but covered the conversations of the patrons. Overall it was a positive experience, and I hope to return during the warmer months.

            1. re: cke25

              So glad you enjoyed it, cke! The jazz trio is new (to me)--nice touch on their part, imo.

              The "barren neighborhood" comment is one that I feel I have to comment on, though. You're in a shore town in winter that was also hit pretty hard by Sandy! Did you notice that when you walked out of Porta you were facing the back of the Stone Pony and a block from the beach? In my experience, even on a cold day, when the sun is out and the boardwalk is open, there are plenty of people around during the off-season! I'd just hate for anyone to be discouraged from trying this place, and even more so from going to AP. That town has had some tremendously wonderful changes in the last five years!

              1. re: Curlz

                Didn't mean to disparage AP in my comments. I've been going to that area all my life. Like you I assume, I've been hoping for that area to return to its former glory. I've been to the Stone Pony, Convention Hall, and the boardwalk countless times. The old HJs on the boardwalk was where my father used to take us after a long, hot day of fishing. But it is difficult to watch some of these great landmarks disappear in favor of empty lots. Hopefully, some will stay and new ones will rise.

                1. re: cke25

                  Big construction going on right across the street from Porta to the left as you are facing the door. Condo development with more on the way. We live at the corner behind Porta and plan on hitting it up for brunch tomorrow.

        2. re: EL7

          Based on the menu it seems to be an ala carte brunch menu correct? My assumption from the OP was she was looking for more the buffet brunch experience. Does Porta offer that as well?

          1. re: jrvedivici

            No--Porta's brunch is a la carte. BUT. SO. GOOD. :-)

      1. I enjoyed the brunch last weekend at The Committed Pig in Manasquan. We were only a short drive over the bridge to Point Pleasant for a walk afterwards also.

        1. The Molly Pitcher Inn in Red Bank is highly regarded for its Sunday Brunch. Pricey similar to Ave I'm sure however much more "stuffy" of an environment.

          6 Replies
          1. re: jrvedivici

            Last time we wanted to take Mom to brunch at the MP, they were not offering it. I think has become a seasonal thing.

            1. re: MGZ

              Thanks for the update, it is still listed on their web site. OP call before you go!

              1. re: jrvedivici

                Is it true that places use Sunday brunch to offload food that is getting old and close to having to be thrown out?

                1. re: ebchower

                  Yes and no. Yes it can used to get rid of excess inventory however the majority of the items are things that need to be prepared that day. Most all breakfast items have to be prepared fresh, lunch items can be things they are looking to put to use before spoilage.

                2. re: jrvedivici

                  My Mother called a short while ago to invite us to brunch at the MP next week, for my birthday. She just heard that they have reinstituted it and was excited. I admit, it was always quite good.

              2. re: jrvedivici

                First time back at the MP brunch in a few years, the Mrs. informed me. It's still quite indulgent. A couple plates of raw oysters were followed by a great deal of pork products, some terrific waffles, eggs benedict, and a variety of other tasty treats. I'm still kinda full this morning.

                If you like the AYCE buffet brunch thing, this one is tough to beat in the area. Forty bucks per person - one drink included.

              3. The Mill in Spring Lake Heights is about the only place in the area I know of doing the "classic" champagne brunch buffet thing:


                Another place that I had a nice brunch at (a la cart) recently was Fish in Asbury Park It's a very cool space inside.

                1 Reply
                1. re: MGZ

                  I definitely would recommend The Mill in spring Lake. They do it right. It's a very nice brunch and the view is very nice too.

                2. SaltCreek is solid and the view is quite nice if you want some ambiance.

                  And yes they do serve mimosas and I am 95% sure the bar is open but a quick call would confirm.

                  I have been several times and it was consistently good.

                  15 Replies
                  1. re: corvette johnny

                    I went to salt creek last year on Mother's Day. It stunk, I would avoid salt creek altogether.

                    1. re: joestein

                      In all fairness (and I have never been to Salt Creek for brunch) but every restaurant whores itself on holiday's so it's unfair to judge them based strictly on a holiday experience. IMO.

                      1. re: joestein

                        ... never had any gripes. It has been rock solid each time so you could have had an off day or maybe have much higher brunch standards than me.

                        Anyway, does anyone have a link to porta? Google shows me a pizza place in asbury. If that is the place in question, I'd bet the house Salt creek has a much better view and ambiance (if that means anything to the OP)

                        1. re: corvette johnny

                          {{pssssst.......look at Bosmer first post on this located there....but yes...same place and excellent for pizza and a cool environment......I cannot comment on the brunch at all}}

                          1. re: jrvedivici

                            Ah I see now. The post was minimized so I missed the bottom part all together.

                            So I'm about as ready for Char as you are!

                          2. re: corvette johnny

                            Porta is indeed a pizza place in Asbury. The place is a former garage and strip club, is drafty, and has unbelievably uncomfortable layout and seating. That being said, they make a terrific wood-fired pie. Having been to both Porta and Salt Creek, although not for brunch, I can easily assure you that you are correct in your assumptions about view and ambiance.

                            1. re: MGZ

                              Porta is the old Blue Dolphin???????

                              1. re: jrvedivici

                                I believe it's at the corner of Kingsley and First. I was more a fan of rock clubs than gay strip clubs, so I am afraid I do not know what the names previously were. I do seem to recall that it was once a straight strip club though - say early 90s when bands like Blues Traveler were cutting their teeth at the Fastlane.


                                1. re: MGZ

                                  Eeeehheeeemmmm.......excuse me while I clear my throat.

                                  Yes.....I am referring to the early 90's version of the location. I remember a visiting a few in the Asbury Park and Long Branch area's way back in the day.

                                  1. re: jrvedivici

                                    It's all good, Big Man. I worked on the Boardwalk and partied at the Fastlane in those days. Maybe stopped at Frankie's for a sandwich now and again before driving up Sunset to try and buy some weed. . . .

                                    Look for me at the Molly next Sunday. Going with Mom though, so I may have to shave. But, I'll probably be the only guy in the place drinkin' his Bloodys with gin.

                                    1. re: MGZ

                                      E-mail me (on my profile) time(s) you'll be there I'll try to swing by and buy you a Gin Bloody Mary. Either way enjoy the brunch with Mom!

                                2. re: jrvedivici

                                  The Blue Dolphin was in Long Branch. It was where the entrance to Gold's Gym is in Pier Village.

                                3. re: MGZ

                                  Salt creek does have some super comfortable booths too! I really dig those.

                                  I might have to get over there for a pie. I love anything over wood.