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Jun 14, 2013 07:52 AM

Shipwreck Point, Point Pleasant NJ (Another long winded review, by yours truly)

So I had a rough day, and due to the impending bad weather last night my appointment canceled, so I decided to treat myself. I've been meaning to try this place for close to a year now, Sandy unfortunately added to my delay. Now re-opened for two weeks as pointed out by my pal MGZ, I decided to take the trip down.

I pulled up and there is ample on the street parking, however I should have read the instructions on the automated parking meter, receipt thing prior to inserting my $20. NO CHANGE NO REFUNDS. So if anybody wants to go park at the Point Pleasant inlet let me know, I have pre-paid parking till November.

Entered and walked right up to the bar, which is very ample in size with 20, 25 stools at least. I sat down by the service bar, cause that’s where you can always have the bartenders attention as she is making the drinks for the restaurant, and you can pick up some gossip from the servers. Got my drink, looked at the menu and placed my order. The bartender Michele was very nice, very efficient, and we knew some common people in the industry. My order consisted of, shrimp cocktail and one off each of their oysters. (blue point, cape may, malpeque) as appetizers, and the 16oz NY Prime Time Strip, ordered medium, side of cream spinach.

Bread was served with two kinds of butter. Appetizers were served shortly thereafter and to my relief they were truly “jumbo” shrimp. Nice and large and cooked firm with a nice “snap” when you bite them. The oysters were delicious and fresh tasting, however they were a little “warm” like room temp, not very chilled. I’ve never noticed the temp of oysters before but for some reason these just seemed a little warm. Finished everything off and we were off to a good start.

Steak was served and it looked good….proper size, first cut through the middle showed a very red and fleshy inside. I order my steak medium, but will eat it rare, which this was certainly more rare than even medium rare. No biggie, I didn't make mention and just took my first bite. Excellent steak….house steak sauce a little too bbq-ish for me…..but the steak was very good. The cream spinach was excellent as well.

Desert consisted of a blueberry crème brulee’s and a double espresso and a Grand Marnier all of which were excellent as well.


Bread was a pop over, flakey hollow pastry more than bread. Not that I was bad, but if I’m at a steakhouse, I want bread I can sink my teeth into.

Appetizers, although I ordered a shrimp cocktail, it came out as 1shrimp and 3oysters, I pointed it out to Michele and they brought out the 2 other shrimp to complete the order. I asked the food runner for some extra hot horseradish he returned with a creamy horseradish most likely for the steaks. I just left it at that. The original 1 shrimp three oyster’s were served with out a lemon slice, but one was provided on the second order of shrimp.
Entrée’s, the steak was served on a cool or room temp plate. I can’t stand steaks served on a non heated plate, pet peeve I guess. It is said to be served with maitre d’ butter, to which I asked Michele to be generous with, when the steak was served the butter wasn’t even fully dissolved, and not very generous. No real problem because the steak was excellent and I had the creamy horseradish sauce to dip. The cream spinach while excellent in flavor was whole leaves, not chopped. I prefer creamed spinach to be chopped as it’s just easier and less sloppy to eat.

Desert; Crème Brule’ was excellent just a bit small on the serving size. About half of what I would say a traditional order of crème brule’ normally is.

Last critique of the evening, the manager, at $156. for dinner for one, this is a “higher end” establishment. Have your manager wear a suit. He looked like he came out of any TGIF or Applebee’s with his Haggar Slacks and shirt and tie. I did find it slightly amusing as a guy and girl walked in, the guy wearing a baseball cap and sleeveless basketball jersey. The hostess apparently instructed the man, no hats in the restaurant, which he complied, took it off and even walked it out to the car. Upon his return I assume he was told by the manager, no sleeveless shirts. They then left.

I had never been here prior to Sandy so I understand there have been some changes, new front door, lobby area, new bar etc. It’s a nice cozy place, dining room is smaller than I had imagined but not uncomfortable at all. I will definitely be back, the miscues are just my honest critiques of the place. After chatting with Michele the bartender she has only been there 2 weeks, since they reopened. I’m sure a majority of the staff had to find other employment during the 6+ month closure, so many I guess are still feeling their way around. Great location, great steak and if your in the area and in the mood I strongly suggest you give it a try.

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  1. Not to digress from your very thorough review, but I wanted to comment on those no refund parking meters since they are prevalent in areas where people go to eat. Last week in Red Bank I wanted to add time to my space and the on screen menu was

    1 - 4 hours
    2 - 3 hours
    3 - 2 hours
    4 - 1 hour

    Now, intuitively you would expect option 1 to be the least amount of time and 4 the most. Rather carelessly I pressed one, only wanting an hour. I did not have enough change for 4 hours worth, and figured it would give me as much time as I paid for. Nope. It ate a few of my quarters, allotted me no time, and when I cancelled I lost the quarters I put in.

    1 Reply
    1. re: ebchower

      Parking is the reason I avoid Pt. UnPleasant at all costs.

    2. Well done explanation. I haven't been there since well before the 29th and the months it took 'em to reopen. I'm sorry there were some disapointments, but one thing I always liked about the place was sittin' in a big table and getting their team service. Maybe bring guests next time?

      As to the twenty bucks, think of it as a donation to Point's Sandy relief fund.

      5 Replies
      1. re: MGZ

        This is the original thread on the place. Funny some of the stuff on it, including the fact that I noted that I was glad my steak was undercooked, even though Mrs. Z had to suffer a bit.

        1. re: MGZ

          Ugggghhhh I thought there was a thread on this place already. I did a search to post my review, I just checked and my search function is set at past 12mos.

          I'm going to copy paste my review to that thread, I'll also copy paste ebchowers parking post as well.

          1. re: jrvedivici

            Don't revive the thread. Think of it as the Phoenix, you know?

        2. re: MGZ

          No need for you to be sorry, as I said they were more "miscues" than any disappointments. It wasn't disappointing at all.

          The parking is a good gimmick, Point must clean up on that. The bill insert/accept says "Accept's $1. $5. $10. $20. $50." So I assumed you received change, I inserted my $20. then as ebchower explains above, the instructions were rather complex, so as I'm searching for instructions on how to operate I see, NO CHANGE NO REFUNDS, so I hit cancel. It spit out a $20. receipt, I couldn't even read how much time, if any I had, I just threw it on my dashboard. If the cops came, so be it.

        3. Nice review JR. This place is on my radar.

          I just hit a capitol grill for the first time in orlando....just got back. My kona encrusted ny st strip was kind of disappointing. Texas de Brazil was spot on though ; )

          3 Replies
          1. re: corvette johnny

            Texas de Brazil, is a Brazillian bbq rodizio? The only one I have been to is in Aruba if that is the place.

            I will be spending plenty of time at Shipwreck, it's my kind of spot.

            1. re: jrvedivici

              yes the same chain as Aruba. I have been the aruba one too. I thought that one was OK but the ones in the US seem to be better.

              Good to hear you found a new spot!

              1. re: corvette johnny

                I was only to the one in Aruba probably a good 6-8 years ago. It was good, excellent salad bar, but I didn't realize it was a rodizio before I walked in.

                I was trying to find a place a little closer to "home" (I have a time share at Playa Linda) rather than trekking into town for El Goucho, the old stand by when I'm in Aruba.

          2. Sounds great except for the price! $156 for a meal for one person? That's a bit too rich for my blood. We didn't even spend that much when we were in Vegas this spring.

            18 Replies
            1. re: Njchicaa

              Well to be fair, that included 6 drinks, 4 Martini's and 2 Grand Marniers. So the actual tab pre-tax was $146. my liquor portion was probably ($11.x 6= $66.) So food ($146-$66=$80) for a 3 course ala carte' meal of this caliber is about accurate. (and side dish and double espresso)

              What can I say, I'm a growing boy!!!!

              1. re: jrvedivici

                "I'm a growing boy!!!!"

                I tell my wife the same thing...

                NJchicaa you should read about JRs vegas lobster story. It's a classic! Go big or go home is his motto.

              2. re: Njchicaa


                I'm sorry. I am a liar, a fraud, a pathetic excuse of a member of this community. I have deceived you and for that I hang my head in shame. I found my recipe for dinner and you were right to be suspicious of my claim!!! My check was only for $153.28, NOT the $156. as I had claimed.

                LIAR!!!!!!!!!! (I can hear you scream as you read this confession) To those who read my posts and contributions, I ask for your forgiveness and given enough time to hopefully regain your trust.

                1. re: jrvedivici

                  Oh I believed the amount that you stated. I just meant that it sounded like a place that was too expensive for our budget.

                  1. re: Njchicaa

                    Pricey? Yes, but inline for the quality of the steak etc. that they are serving. Honestly if your not a steak foodie, this place is probably a waste for you. I'm sure you can experience a nice meal with some of the other menu items, but at heart this is trying to be a steakhouse, and doing a pretty good job.

                    1. re: jrvedivici

                      The prices seem reasonable when I look at the bill. We will probably try it bc we definitely like steak.

                      1. re: Njchicaa

                        Yeah right!?! Nothing like a reminder as to why your over 300lbs then getting a $153. check for dinner for one! (Speaking of which there is a good chance I'm going back tonight!! LOL)

                        1. re: jrvedivici

                          I once dropped more than twice that much in a hotel bar in Chicago. And, I didn't even get and entree or a kiss goodnight.

                          1. re: MGZ

                            If you care to spend that on me at the Shipwreck I can assure you a kiss goodnight!

                            1. re: jrvedivici

                              I don't live that life or make that kinda money anymore. I drop that much coin in a bar these days, it's gonna require more than a kiss . . . .

                              1. re: MGZ

                                Ha! It's been less than 24 hours since you made this post, yet it's been on my mind every minute since you posted it.

                                I gotta' tell you what my friend, I admire that. From what I've read and pieced together it seems you hung up the $1,500 suits, and are pursuing something more "gratifying" in life. Good for you!

                                I stopped and paused in the mirror this morning looking at myself in my (less than $1,500 suit) and the reflection could have been a kid in a paper hat and Mc D polo shirt on. Just wearing a uniform, going through the motions. Would you like fries with that?

                                Side note: I stopped having suits custom tailored after in one week I ruined 3 suits, the last of which, I set on fire while I was doing some table side flambe'. After that I went back to off the rack. I still preserved a few of the custom's but only take them out on special occasions, like when your going to meet me at the Shipwreck, dutch.

                                1. re: jrvedivici

                                  Shit, Brother, I don't even have shoes on right now.

                                  I figured out there's reason ladies don't sleep in bras and fellas don't wear those silk leashes into bed.

                                  I'm a reason over rule guy.

                                  1. re: jrvedivici

                                    Here's my best friend playin' bass for some guy you might recognize. The Scalfa boy is a former Casey. I've played with all of 'em before . . . .


                                    1. re: MGZ

                                      Yeah I know that guy....I ran into him at Jack's music this past Christmas, buying a Bon Jovi CD I think. lol I'm glad he finally stepped up to the mic, for the first minute + it seemed as if he had stage fright. Good stuff.........

                                      1. re: jrvedivici

                                        My buddies and I did a fundraiser at what was then, Harry's Roadhouse in AP. The Boss shows up to do that thing he does when it comes to the local community. In those day's, I had shoulder length hair, blonded by the ocean and the summer sun.

                                        "Hey, you got chops?"

                                        "Nah, Dude, I'm lucky if I can play a C chord sometimes."

                                        "I'm sure . . . . Looks like you got an extra axe. How 'bout I sit in?"

                                        "Brother, that would be memorable. How 'bout you sign that cheap Les Paul of mine when you're done playin' Single A ball?"

                                        "You're a smart guy. This ain't you're real gig is it?"

                                        "Nah, I'm just done bein' a corporate lawyer, but I do like to plug in sometimes . . . ."

                                        "Just try and keep up, ok? And your D string is flat."

                                        The guitar raised over three thousand dollars later that night.

                                        Same bass player.

                                        1. re: jrvedivici

                                          JR, have you been to Brandos for steak? Had a dry aged porterhouse there last week, it was pretty darned good.

                                          1. re: joonjoon

                                            No I haven't been there........but I have been to their sister restaurant (I'm pretty sure I read that on here) Osteria Cucina Rustica in Marlboro a few times. I pass Osteria way on my way home from work so it's just more convenient for me. I enjoyed a few steaks there this time last year, as well as a much enjoyed cigar at the outside bar after my steak. The steaks at Osteria are excellent as well.

                                        2. re: MGZ

                                          cool.. my guitar teacher will like this..

                    2. Last minute decision to hit up Point last night...very glad we went. Nabbed the only two open seats at the bar when we arrived around 7 pm (dining room was booked). Was feeling pretty good after downing a couple of La Chouffes and wife was happy with whatever Chardonnay the barstaff was pouring. The complimentary spiced cashews were quite addictive. Like JR's visit from June, we started with the pop overs. Thought they were great with the maple butter. I recall very nice bread service on a prior visit, but was quite happy with the pop overs. Starters included oysters (properly chilled over ice) and wife's goat cheese salad. We shared the 20 oz. dry aged cowboy ribeye which came out on the rare side of medium rare which was just fine by me. Didn't even touch the steak sauce. Very nice sides of asparagus (hold the hollandaise) and truffled mac and cheese (so very good).

                      While all the food was spot on, what really made our night was our lengthy conversation with one of the owners of Point and Grille, Bill Cleary, who was eating next to us. Really interesting story about how he got into the business and his involvement with the diving community (as evidenced by many of the mementos on display at Shipwreck Grille). It was a real pleasure to see someone so passionate about his business and desire to keep his customers happy.

                      Comp disclosure: owner attempted to comp us dessert (which we were really too full to eat), but the one we reluctantly selected (bread pudding) was all out.

                      If I lived a bit closer, I could really see myself being a regular at Point's bar.