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Ideas for place to go for a week with kosher restaurants around, PLEASE!

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My Mother and me (81 and 52) are planning to run away from Brooklyn in the end of August for few days to stay in some quite green surroundings within 1-2 hours driving distance from NYC. We were considering Monsey, because this is an only place I am familiar with (I live in Israel, my Mom in Brooklyn), but since I saw the post here that there are no good kosher restaurants around (the fact I was never aware of), we are now looking for an alternative. Should be quite, green, pleasant and withing short distance from glatt kosher food establishments. Does it exist?

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  1. I don't know where you got the idea that there are no kosher restaurants in and around Monsey. There are plenty. Shamash lists 23 places just in Monsey alone, not to mention nearby places such as Spring Valley. They may not be *good* restaurants, i.e. if a major purpose of your vacation is to enjoy eating out, then perhaps Monsey is not the best place to do that, and you should consider somewhere like Montreal. But if you're going on vacation and all you're concerned about is that you shouldn't have to shlep your food from Brooklyn, then Monsey should suit you just fine.

    1. Monsey has plenty of great kosher restaurants - you can also go upstate, to the Catskills, where (during the summer) there is kosher food aplenty. New Jersey might be an option, too - what about Teaneck or Lakewood? Or Deal/Asbury Park?

      7 Replies
      1. re: ahuva

        There was a thread recently in which it was claimed that there are no "good" restaurants in Monsey, and nobody challenged that. I assume that's why yzksn thought that if he and his mother go there they'd be stuck for food. But in the context it was about a place good enough to take guests.

        1. re: ahuva

          Lakewood is not a place I'd recommend for a vacation.

          1. re: Njchicaa

            Nor would I recommend Teaneck, especially if the plan is to "escape Brooklyn" for green surroundings.

            Montreal is lovely (although you'd never know it staying at the kosher hotel near the freeway) and has many kosher options.

            1. re: CloggieGirl

              Re: Montreal. It is a great vacation city with lots of green and lots to do. Important to be aware, though, that nearly all the kosher restaurants are concentrated in one small strip that is far from the downtown area.
              There is a supermarket, also far from downtown, which has a very large selection of kosher groceries as well as fresh meat and some takeout.
              I wrote a long post on Montreal last summer. Getting ready for work now so don't have time to look it up.

              1. re: almond tree

                I know you're thousands of miles away and mean well (as others who have also mentioned it) BUT Montreal is nowhere close to within the 2 hour driving time from NYC that the OP requested.

                That leaves, Jersey, southern CT, Catskills and Rockland County. All of which can provide greenery and availability of kosher food.
                In CT there are beach communities with summer shuls and limited kosher restaurants within 30 minutes drive, and kosher groceries in ample supply at all the chain supermarkets. I know that Woodmont (known as bagel beach from the 1930s on) has an active shul (now run by Chabad) and loads of cottages and houses that are rented to NYers. Further east on the shore there is a summer shul on the beach in Old Lyme and another just west of New London. Kosher restaurants exist in Stamford, and New Haven, There are more than a dozen CT Stop and Shop Locations with in-store bakeries under kosher supervision. In West Haven (10 minutes from Woodmont, Shop-Rite carries a full line of glatt meat, deli, CY dairyand has a supervised bakery. The CT shore is close and cheaper than southern Jersey.

                1. re: bagelman01

                  Yes, I was surprised that Montreal was brought up as an option in the first place. considering the OP's specifications ... but since it was mentioned, I threw in a tidbit of info for anyone who might be considering going there.

                  1. re: almond tree

                    I love Montreal and have been going there for more than 50 years, but tried to get the thread back on focus, NY Metro area.

        2. You've thought of the Catskills? There are glatt restaurants. And it's green.

          If you want good restaurants, you might think about the nicer Long Island suburbs with glatt facilities, Great Neck and the Five Towns have nice restaurants, it's country-ish, and there are some nice, vacation things to do (visiting historic houses, museums, gardens, and driving further out the island to picturesque towns.)

          3 Replies
          1. re: AdinaA

            there may be food in the Catskills, but I don't know if there is anywhere nice to stay. If you find somewhere, please pass it on.

            1. re: kosherfoodie1226

              True. Depending on who you know, it can be possible to borrow or lease a home at Vacation Village (glatt restaurant, attractive grounda) OP and his/her Mom sounded like the sort of people who might have the sort of connections to do this. You then drive along country roads to other restaurants. But although the take-out can be pretty great, I'm not sure that there are any really restaurants in the Catskills where the food is something you would write home about.

              1. re: kosherfoodie1226

                There are motels quite close to kosher food establishments. Monticelo has a few(Best Western, Super 8)

            2. If the ocean appeals to you, I'd look into Long Branch/Deal/Asbury Park in New Jersey. They're all near each other, and there are a number of kosher restaurants in the area, as well as well stocked kosher stores and supermarkets with kosher food.

              10 Replies
              1. re: helou

                Ocean Place is very nice, but not cheap this time of the year. Bungalow is not the place for your mom, small and much too noisy I would think.

                1. re: kosherfoodie1226

                  I thank you all who replied to this thread. Please DON'T STOP! I follow closely each reply and I think I am very close to the solution. Right now I am looking at very nice 2br cottage with a garden in north part of Smallwood, 5 min. drive and 30 min. walk from White Lake. It looks gorgeous on Google Maps and if my mother approves we will go there yi"h. Couldn't resist to share some pictures of the place published by an owner. Just hope it is real ;-). Will update you all on the outcomes. Thanks again! Hope this thread will help more yidn to find the best place for their summer retreat. SO DON'T STOP!

                  1. re: yzksn

                    Deal and environs would be my vote, if the beach appeals. Another beach option is Ventnor/Margate, just south of Atlantic City.
                    If mountain greenery is more your thing, then I think you're probably looking in the right place (near White Lake). Unfortunately, outside NYC/Teaneck, there are very few places (vacation or otherwise) with more than 2-3 kosher options in one place.

                    1. re: DeisCane

                      As for Monsey, you can rent a house here for a week or something, but I'm not sure how you can get a hold of that. There are some restaurants, but none are good and you'll be renting blindly so you may end up on a congested street in a house that isn't restful. Don't do it. You see, the issue for you is that you want peace and quiet and a bunch of kosher restaurants and that does not go together. Next time, if your mom is up to it, fly her to Vegas which I have reviewed here multiple times. There you have your scenery and your kosher and you don't ever have to walk into a casino if you don't want to. Another option if you are up for a long drive is New Hampshire. You would have your scenery. There's a condo resort called Loon Mountain where many frum people own or rent condos. They have a Shabbos minyan and--while they don't have kosher restaurants--there is a kosher grocery and takeout in Bethlehem. You and your mom will feel comfortable, but you'll have to drive 7 hours to get there.

                    2. re: yzksn

                      Okay. I was a bit busy with visiting day for my son in White Lake, btw. I would have replied earlier. Here's the deal. There were some cute cottages in White Lake, but I wouldn't necessarily trust anything. It sounds like you need to be with the members of the tribe. In that case, I would do one of three things:
                      1. gamble on White Lake, but do not commit to more than one or two nights in case it's a dump.
                      2. a sure thing and a "shore thing" would be to book the Sheraton Eatontown outside of Deal, NJ. Many frum people stay there (too many for me, thanks--just because I like my space from time to time, you know) and they have nice rooms and a pretty indoor-outdoor pool (connected) in case you would consider wearing a swimdress and swimming (many of the frum people do that at the hotel, makes me a little uncomfortable, but...)
                      It's not the green space you wanted, but it's 10 minutes from the Long Branch beach and the restaurants in Deal/Long Branch. You'll like that a lot. Plus there are shops on the boardwalk.
                      3. Book rooms at the Raleigh Hotel in the Catskills. You'll get the green space and the frum people, swimming, etc. And the food was really good the last time I was there. Rooms were renovated, but I can't tell you how they look as it's been a while. Your mom will probably love it.
                      Good luck!

                      1. re: cappucino

                        When were you in the Raleigh last? My son was there for a school shabbaton last November and was not exactly impressed. The rooms were nowhere near fixed up. The shul was so moldy that my son ,who has well controlled asthma, went through half an inhaler in 4 days. His friend's siddur was full of mold. He did say that they were in the process of fixing up the lobby. I would be leery.

                        1. re: kosherfoodie1226

                          a couple of years ago. it wasn't a luxury experience then either, but these people want heimish. you are describing something unacceptable. oh well. hopefully, they will get what they want.

                      2. re: yzksn

                        In Smallwood you are 15 minutes drive from Monticello (Simply Sushi, Catskills Bakery, and Pizza D'Pie), and 30 minutes from Woodbourne/Loch Sheldrake (Vacation Village, Dougie's, Uncle Mike's, Kosher Inn Dairy, Chalet Hotel, Izzy's Knish-Knosh, Fallsburg Bagels). You won't starve.

                        If a purpose of your vacation is to enjoy good restaurants, go somewhere else. But if the point of your query was merely to make sure you won't have to shlep food from Brooklyn, or live on peanut butter and tuna, rest assured, you can spend a whole week there and never eat more than twice in the same place. You'll only have to get take-away for Shabbat.

                        1. re: zsero

                          By the way, here's the menu for Vacation Village: http://www.greatkosherrestaurants.com...
                          Find dining this is not, but if you're in the area anyway, and you have to dine, it's just fine.

                        2. re: yzksn

                          If you're looking for beach, what about Long Beach/ Atlantic Beach in Long Island. It's a quick drive to the 5 towns which has many kosher restaurants. 5 towns- as far as I know- does not have any hotels.

                    3. You can check out Tannersville, NY, which is on the way to Hunter Mountain. There's a kosher grocery store, though no restaurants. But it is beautiful.

                      1. Yesterday my Mom requested again that we go to Monsey area because she is not comfortable to stay too far away from home (my dreams of White Lake was put away). Somebody here in my shul who lived in Monsey for years suggested that we go to Crowne Plaza (former Holiday Inn) in Suffern for few days as it is very close to Monsey, empty on a middle of a week, 4 stars and many frum folks go there in hathunas period when Monsey is packed with guests (end of August is exactly that time). Does any one have an idea what we are expected to find there from an experience? (Checked it on Booking.com, not sure I can trust their customers reviews which are very favorable though)

                        1 Reply
                        1. re: yzksn

                          I live in Monsey. There are plenty of restful green spaces in the Forshay, Wilder and Pomona areas. Deer and wild turkeys walk around there. Perhaps you could pick up a Yated, a Hamodia or look through Community Connections ( www.3712222.com ) for someone renting out a place.

                        2. First of all, it is delightful that you are doing this for and with your Mother. Kudos to you!

                          Assuming you will be in Smallwood, if you do have a hankering for fine dining and don't mind driving an hour and a half to Monsey, there is a brand new steakhouse called "The Ridge," a delightful dairy restaurant called the Purple Pear and a Japanese restaurant called KYO. There is an ultra-chic dairy place called Yoffee and Hava Java, a well-conceived take-off of Starbucks. [You can also get cholent and yapchik at 2:00 am at Mechel's, but that's another story.]

                          If you want to drive a touch further (90 minutes) to Teaneck, you have a lot to choose from, including: Nobo Wine and Grill, Etc. Steakhouse, Smokey Joes and Mocha Bleu.

                          1 Reply
                          1. re: WithaSmile

                            you can also find kosher restaurants in Fairlawn-
                            just down the road-NYS Thruway 287 to Rt.208

                          2. I've been holding off during this discussion, but if you aren't in need of four star experiences, you can enjoy every meal in Monsey. We have a variety of really nice restaurants and cafes where you can eat well. The real question is what to do when you aren't dining.....

                            19 Replies
                            1. re: jayneandshayna

                              you can go into NJ and visit Ramapo Mt.reservation-

                              1. re: jayneandshayna

                                I've been wondering about that too. In yzksn's position, (elderly parent, aversion to traveling more than an hour) in the sweltering heat of August in the Northeast, I think I'd head for Manhattan or downtown Philadelphia, take taxis to restaurants, and spend an hour or two each day strolling or sitting in air-conditioned comfort in a some of the world's most finest museums. If you want greenery, Central Park and Fairmount Park are much prettier than Monsey. For that matter, so is Prospect Park (and it has great (glatt) restaurants nearby.

                                  1. re: AdinaA

                                    OP's problem is that it's 30 years too late to stay at the Monsey Park Hotel.

                                    It sounds like mom needs some comfortable lobby sitting or to be on a chair on the porch overlooking the lake and grounds with kosher meals available.

                                    Oh wait, I'm lost in the sixties and we'd be in the Catskills for the month of August.

                                    In case OP is reading, hotel asked about is full of business people during the week, in a not-green setting and would not be relaxing for mom.

                                    1. re: bagelman01

                                      That's true. Vacation Village is something like that. You can sit by the playground, watch the kids play, and win a round of Jewish geography with the stranger sitting next to you. I don't know of hotels like that near New York.

                                      1. re: bagelman01

                                        Agreed, bagelman. The Holiday Inn is full of people all the time and not at all restful. There is no green space. Monsey is congested and stressful if you aren't used to living there. Getting around raises your blood pressure especially if you aren't living in America these days. No Way!!! Not a good idea, guys. Yeesh. I hope Vacation Village works out. I suggest again the Sheraton Eatontown and walking on the boardwalk dinners in Long Branch (there are benches all along the boardwalk). There is shopping. Long Branch/Deal NJ is very easy to navigate. Good luck. And, to all those who say that Monsey has upscale restaurants and all, I wish all of you the blessing of getting out of Monsey every once in a while.

                                        1. re: cappucino

                                          Posting once again to say that your best bet is the Jersey shore at Long Branch/Deal.
                                          I think the Catskills are the sort of place you have in mind, but that's finished. Monsey is just a neighborhood where people live all year round, not a vacation/resort area.

                                          1. re: helou

                                            I beg to differ: There are a whole slew of people who have summer homes in Monsey, in the areas I mentioned. some of them multimillionaires. We are not speaking of the corner of 306 and 59.
                                            Please recall that the two are coming from Brooklyn,

                                            1. re: WithaSmile

                                              The people who own summer homes in Monsey live and drive all year in Boro Park or Flatbush and are used to bad driving, traffic, and poor service everywhere they go. These are not relaxed vacationers. And the OP was very clear that she lives in Israel. There is nothing, nothing at all relaxing about being a non-Monseyite vacationing in Monsey.

                                              1. re: cappucino

                                                Cappucino, I respect your view and believe that it is sincerely held. However, there are many, many persons who have the means to vacation in five star settings in all the places you mentioned, and yet they choose Monsey instead. For them, there is everything, everything relaxing about being a non-Monseyite vacationing in Monsey.

                                                1. re: WithaSmile

                                                  There is a difference between owning a second home in Monsey and vacationing there. I know some wealthy people who live in lovely large apartments in Manhattan because that's where they work, kids go to school, etc., but they also own a house in Teaneck or five towns so that in the summer and for Yom Tovs they can have that more suburban lifestyle, with a swimming pool in the back yard.
                                                  That's not the same as a vacation in a hotel.

                                                  1. re: WithaSmile

                                                    It's just frustrating, withasmile, because we try to be practical and help people on this board. In what scenario do you see two people completely unfamiliar with Monsey getting set up in a home that's on a quiet street with a perfect Monsey lawn and no issues for a week? Also, how much would that run them, do you think? And which realtor around here or which private person placing an ad in the Community Connections would you trust to provide them with what they need? For every quiet street in Forshay, there's an overdeveloped mess of a street in Main Monsey with multimillion dollar homes on it. For every peaceful yard with turkeys and deer (mine included) there is a yard that is small and too close to its neighbor (again belonging to a monstrosity of a home). These people are not going to come out here and do reconnaissance to check out the home first. They will rent sight unseen and be taken advantage of. Then they will need to navigate the construction on route 306 and face the reality that Monsey is actually very spread out and hard to navigate if you are not familiar with it. Why would you send them to this kind of experience? It's just weird. You seem to want to defend the lifestyle here. That's fine, but this is a vacation query from a novice who lives in Israel. Let's just hook her up with something definate and peaceful for goodness sakes. And, for the record, the wealthy people who choose to buy summer homes here when they could go anywhere do so not because Monsey is the be all and end all. They do so because they are tried and true Brooklynites and can't see their way clear to any sort of creative choice and because this is business to them and they know that--at some point--they will flip that summer home and make a profit. I like telling it straight. It's really important if people are going to help people on here.

                                                    1. re: cappucino

                                                      Besides, OP and mom want to go away for a FEW DAYS. not typical for a house rental, except for beach weekend cottages.
                                                      House rental imply one wants to cook/clean/keep house, something that is no vacation for an 81 year old mom. If OP followed withasmile's advice, mom would be withafrown.

                                                      1. re: bagelman01

                                                        I think Jersey shore points would be great idea-
                                                        no mountains but seascape-quiet and several options for recreation and dining

                                                      2. re: cappucino

                                                        Thank you, cappucino. That's why I've posted my question in the first place. (BTW I am he [:-)#). I followed this discussion very closely and checked almost all suggestions but still didn't find anything green and relaxing within 1 hour drive from Brooklyn. NJ is another option I am exploring now, but is it not too hot in the end of August to walk along the shore (beside of the question of tznius which I personally consider as important). Shopping is not our goal, nor swimming. We are open to creative ideas as long as they meet our basic guidelines. I am sure that there is a nice solution and absolutely refuse to give up!

                                                        1. re: yzksn

                                                          try looking in NJ-
                                                          There is Teaneck and Fairlawn in Bergen County within 1 hours drive that meet most of your requirements.

                                                          1. re: jpr54_1

                                                            Teaneck and Fairlawn are suburbs. They fall into most of the same issues as Monsey. I think the OP needs to expand his range back to 2 hours from the 1 hour he's talking about now. Especially if he's heading west. Depending on traffic, 1 hour may not even get you out of Manhattan from Brooklyn and even with no traffic you're really not getting very far from the city. If 1 hour is important I would look to Long Island instead, at least that way you don't lose half your travel time just getting through NYC.

                                                            1. re: avitrek

                                                              I beg to differ-they are much nicer than Monsey

                                                          2. re: yzksn

                                                            Ok. I don't know why I assumed you were a "she." Now, I get it. The shore is probably not a good idea for you. If you are willing to bring food along, then go to the Poconos. There is a very pretty resort called Woodloch. It has rooms in the main building, condos and large houses for rent. Many frum people go there with families. They have entertainment and events, some of which may be interesting to mom and it is very green out there, about 2 hrs from Brooklyn. Look them up online. The only thing I am concerned about is price (it can run high as it is a nice place) and the food issue. Again, if you are willing to bring food, I think you'll be happy. My next idea which would include food for you is further out than you want to go, but might do the trick. There is a Marriott Villa property (meaning all the rooms are 2-bedroom villas with kitchens and porches) on the site of a golf course in Absecon, NJ near Atlantic City. The property itself is high end and green and there is an Elizabeth Arden spa on site that mom may like (not so much you now that I know you are a guy). There is a restaurant called Burgers.org in Margate, NJ that is about 20 min away. It's not that great, but it might be good enough for dinner. Plus it's right next to a Young Israel so you can daven there if you want. Maybe there are other kosher takeouts in a supermarket down there. There are shoprites and other supermarkets in southern Jersey that actually offer hot food or sandwiches, but I don't know which right now. You can google "Kosher Experience" in New Jersey and see what pops up. I think mom will like the property. It may cost a bit, but at least you know it will be nice. Alternatively, you can try Mountain Creek Resort in Western NJ. Not far from Brooklyn (prob less than 90 min), very nice accommodations--it's a ski resort. It's an hour drive from there to West Orange or Teaneck areas where you can get kosher food, but if you are willing to drive out for dinner, you could do that. Good luck again.

                                        2. There are a few kosher places in New Haven Conn.:

                                          * Claire's Cornercopia in downtown New Haven is kosher vegetarian
                                          * There's a deli called Westville Kosher Market on the western side of town.
                                          * Edge of the Woods market on Whalley Avenue in New Haven has a kosher bakery and hot food buffet (also vegetarian).
                                          * The regular supermarkets and liquor stores carry a large selection of kosher items.

                                          None of these places is a full-service kosher restaurant with liquor licenses and waiter service. But the food is very good.

                                          New Haven itself is a small city with theater, art museums and galleries,music etc. There are lots of pretty beaches around - Hammonasset in nearby Madison is a beautiful state park.

                                          2 Replies
                                          1. re: shoes

                                            This New Haven Native will tell you that New Haven is not a quiet, green place that 81 yo mom would enjoy as her getaway. None of these restaurants are conducive to dining as opposed to eating. A young family might enjoy checking into a motel and exploring the museums at Yale, theatre and the shoreline, but this is not for the OP and his mom.

                                            1. re: bagelman01

                                              I never said New Haven offered fine kosher dining! But you could get by nicely for a few days with what's on offer.

                                              I think the area is a nice option - rent a beach house in New Haven or a suburb to get some outdoors time, get groceries in New Haven and enjoy a few simple meals out.

                                              It's certainly an hour from the city. And there's lots to do on a rainy day.

                                          2. I just booked a double room in Comfort Inn in Nanuet (can be cancelled for free until an arrival day though). It is on the way and very close to Monsey, and it looks comfortable and affordable. I think we are going to eat our lunch at Hummus Elite in Englewood on the way and after some rest going to dine at one of the places that were suggested in this thread. If somebody has anything to add to the list of nice kosher restaurants in the area I will appreciate all the info I can get. We still have plenty of time to see what we will be doing next day or two in the area, but basically I think our problem is solved. I hope this thread will help others to find their way around in similar circumstances as well. Thanks again.

                                            21 Replies
                                            1. re: yzksn

                                              Teaneck and Fairlawn both have good glatt kosher restaurants. Teaneck is town next to Englewood

                                              1. re: jpr54_1

                                                Thank you jpr54_1. May be on our way back as it is about 1/2 hour driving south from Nanuet.

                                              2. re: yzksn

                                                The clientele at that motel can be iffy. You'll see how it goes. If it was that or the Holiday Inn, you should have chosen the Holiday Inn. Also, better bet would have been the Fairfield Inn by Marriott Nanuet or the Hilton Garden Inn. Clearly, you've given up on green space. I would also urge you to consider the Crown Plaza in Englewood, NJ just down the road from Hummus Elite or the Glenpointe Marriott in Teaneck. You will be in a nicer hotel with acceptable clientele and you will have your food. You can go look out at the Hudson river along the Palisades parkway where there are trails. You can access that from Palisade Ave, I believe in Englewood. That said, I assume you are stuck on Monsey. So, all I can say is that I tried. Good Shabbos.

                                                1. re: cappucino

                                                  Thanks again cappucino (and Good Woch)! I'll certainly check 2 other options in Nanuet (Fairfield Inn and Hilton Garden Inn). I have chosen Comfort Inn just because their guests review scores on Booking.com were higher than others, but I always like to follow good advise from somebody who knows what he/she is talking about. As for green space that I've given up - what choice I am left with in my situation?

                                                  1. re: yzksn

                                                    The rooms in the Hilton Garden Inn all have refrigerators and microwaves and a Keurig coffee maker. They supply the coffee which is kosher. Makes a stay including takeout prepared food easy

                                                    1. re: yzksn

                                                      Don't give up on green space.
                                                      What do you consider green space?
                                                      some parts of Northern NJ might be the suburbs but there are still flowers, gardens, mountains, lakes and scenery- even some farms

                                                      1. re: jpr54_1

                                                        Yeeh, for now I've comfortably canceled Comfort Inn and booked instead Hilton Garden Inn in Nanuet (free cancellation option makes people too picky I guess). Hope all that (flowers, gardens, mountains, lakes and scenery) still will be present when we arrive. I am optimistic.

                                                    2. re: cappucino

                                                      Cappucino, what would you think, as an alternative to the Nanuet hotels mentioned, of the Hilton at Woodcliff Lake? The official rate may be pricier than the Comfort Inn et al. but I think they could get that down through Priceline, etc. I remember that hotel as having very green surroundings. Here's a picture of the gazebo there.

                                                      1. re: WithaSmile

                                                        Would you recommend it even after reading these guests reviews (in the link below)?

                                                        1. re: yzksn

                                                          I must be missing something here, 8.1/10 is not too shabby of a rating.

                                                          1. re: MartyB

                                                            please be careful-comfort inn is not the best of hotels-
                                                            Woodcliff Lake and area is a much better location and has more greenery, etc.

                                                            1. re: MartyB

                                                              You're right, but when you read carefully what people are complaining about, you think twice.

                                                            2. re: yzksn

                                                              Well, I stayed there a few years ago and loved it. MartyB's point, that 8.1 out of 10 is not too shabby, is exactly right. Looking at recent TripAdvisor reviews, it seems to me that weekends may be too busy and loud, but my impression is that you don't plan to be there for Shabbos. Here is a TripAdvisor review that was posted yesterday:
                                                              “Hilton Woodcliff Lake is lovely!”
                                                              4 of 5 stars Reviewed yesterday NEW

                                                              My family stayed at the Hilton Woodcliff Lake in a wedding block. We found the site to be very clean, hotel staff extremely helpful (but sometimes busy), and amenities enjoyable. The breakfast buffet and the bar are very expensive. The pools are gorgeous and fitness rooms clean. I would have enjoyed a few more days of relaxation at the Hilton Woodcliff Lake!

                                                              Stayed July 2014, traveled with family
                                                              5 of 5 stars Value
                                                              4 of 5 stars Location
                                                              4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
                                                              4 of 5 stars Rooms
                                                              4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
                                                              4 of 5 stars Service

                                                              1. re: yzksn

                                                                There is also the Hilton Pearl River, which is another 5 minutes away. I have no personal experience with it, but I see that Booking.com also gives it an 8.1 and that the pics of the grounds look pretty impressive.

                                                                  1. re: WithaSmile

                                                                    Psh-sh-sh-sh, it looks gorgeous!
                                                                    So we are back to the original theme: where we find nice kosher places around there?

                                                                      1. re: yzksn

                                                                        The kosher restaurants are not a problem if you go there. You are 15 minutes from the Ridge Steakhouse, 17 minutes from the Purple Pear and Sweet Expressions and Yoffee, all in the Monsey area.
                                                                        Going the other way, you are 26 minutes from Smokey Joe's and Nobo Wine and Grill in Teaneck.
                                                                        So you are in great shape there!

                                                                        1. re: WithaSmile

                                                                          Woodcliff Lake is better than Nanuet. You're right, Withasmile. It isn't that green, though. Just better than the other options. I used to use the fitness club. Nice place at the time. It hurts me that he doesn't want to face the fact that there is no restful green vacation awaiting him and his lovely mother. But, I give up. White flag. :)

                                                                            1. re: WithaSmile

                                                                              It's nice, but Woodcliff Lake is just a straight shot down 45 into Main Monsey. No highways to deal with. Plus, if he wants to go to Teaneck, he's just down the road from the Garden State and can shoot down to Teaneck in 20 minutes or so. It was a good suggestion.

                                                            3. you are very close to the huge Palisades mall, which is good for an outing

                                                              1 Reply
                                                              1. re: jayneandshayna

                                                                Thank you jayneandshayna. What is there besides shopping (not our goal)?

                                                              2. it's a 15 minute drive to Bear Mountain park. Beautiful walking trails. You are also minutes from Piermont, which has a wonderful pier for walking way out into the Hudson. Right near your hotel is the new Nanuet Mall with a Fairway that has a lot of kosher products.

                                                                1 Reply
                                                                1. re: jayneandshayna

                                                                  Thanks! Duly noted [;-})#
                                                                  Sorry, gotta go, it is 2:30 AM here. Will read all your amazing posts tomorrow.

                                                                2. If you dont need the weekend you can get some sweet deals in Atlantic city.

                                                                    1. re: WithaSmile

                                                                      For now I keep a reservation in Hilton Pearl River (thank you WithaSmile for the suggestion!) for 2 nights (Sunday-Monday). I asked the hotel whether there is some wedding or another social event is scheduled for the dates of our stay and their reply was:"There is one wedding on Sunday. We make every effort to keep guest with a wedding on the same floor and away from guest here on their own. This should not be an issue with only one wedding group on that Sunday. There are no social groups in the hotel on Monday or Tuesday."
                                                                      So may be we alter the dates and instead of Sunday-Monday, we go there Monday-Tuesday. Not a big deal.
                                                                      Regarding Ridge Steakhouse I checked their website but there is no info what kind of Hashgacha they have, so I asked them also (yesterday) and am waiting for their reply.
                                                                      Any new insights will be GREATLY appreciated.

                                                                      1. re: yzksn

                                                                        Hidden deep in Ridge Steakhouse's website they say "Under the strict supervision of Harav Zushe Yosef Blech"

                                                                        He is associated with EarthKosher http://certified.earthkosher.com/

                                                                        Please decide for yourself if this meets your standards.

                                                                        1. re: yzksn

                                                                          My son's wedding was on a Sunday afternoon at the hotel.
                                                                          guests arrived at the hotel beginning on Friday.
                                                                          Wedding related events were held on Friday and Saturday both at the hotel and nearby.
                                                                          Guests were well behaved, etc.

                                                                      2. everyone eats at Ridge (aka sushi metsuyan) no problem with kashrus

                                                                        6 Replies
                                                                        1. re: jayneandshayna

                                                                          Nobody said there IS a problem. Just because I am not familiar with the place I thought it was appropriate to ask the restaurant about it. This info is not on the front page of their website. We will most certainty go there for a dinner.

                                                                          1. re: jayneandshayna

                                                                            For what it's worth: I know R' Blech personally. Massive talmid chacham and encyclopedic knowledge of food science. Excellent hashgacha (and I tend to be a bit picky). Aside from people who will not eat at any restaurant, I don't know anyone who would not use his hashgacha. Here's a little about him and his book: http://www.kashrut.com/KosherFoodProd...

                                                                            1. re: WithaSmile

                                                                              In another discussion, I posted the certification information for a restaurant and someone took it as a criticism and that post was removed by a moderator. Here I posted the certification and added "Please decide for yourself if this meets your standards." to try and make clear that I am following the posting guidelines for this group. For what it's worth, I believe this hashgacha is reliable.

                                                                              1. re: follick

                                                                                I personally don't think that this is an appropriate media for discussion of who's hashgacha is reliable and who's not. Those matters should be learned in Beith Medrash, not on the internet forum. Who am I to give an approval of an hashgaha of this Talmid Chacham or another? As long as there is hasgacha available and there is no evidence that the food is tref, the food IS kosher. No way I can measure and compare Yirath Shamaim of any Rav musmach by an Orthodox Beith Din. I think it would be very dangerous approach. So let's go back to an original question: where we are going to spend few days on a vacation. So far we settled on Hilton Pearl River and we go eat to Ridge Steakhouse etc. Any objections?

                                                                                  1. re: yzksn

                                                                                    Sounds like great choices so far. Don't forget about Yoffee and Sweet Expressions in Monsey (both dairy) or Smokey Joes (authentic pit bbq) in Teaneck.

                                                                              1. re: jayneandshayna

                                                                                Sweet Expressions is an ice cream shop upstairs from Rockland Kosher in the mall known as Shopper's Haven. If you walk into Shopper's Haven and instead of going straight to Rockland Kosher you turn right and take the stairs, Sweet Expressions is directly in front of you when you reach the second floor. [There is also an elevator.] The ice cream, milk shakes, razzles etc. are great. They have a Ferrero Rocher flavor which is a must try. I am also partial to the Caramello milk shake.

                                                                                1. re: WithaSmile

                                                                                  I had no idea about Sweet Expressions. The op might want to know that the pizza store downstairs at Shopper's Haven has real old-style Milchig food (blintzes, farina :)) and, if his mom is European, she might like the blast from the past. Just watch out for the crowds both in the parking lot and inside the place itself. I would love to hear what your thoughts are in the end of this excursion, Yzksn. I still wish I could send you elsewhere. Please update us.

                                                                                  1. re: cappucino

                                                                                    Thank you. If you'll recall something else around there please post. Will update afterwards, bli neder. I am still full month away from the trip. Hageshmakeh Shabboth.

                                                                                    1. re: yzksn

                                                                                      OK, on the subject of bagel places for your Mom:
                                                                                      There are several places, but one brand new one that stands out. I think all of them have dairy menus that go far beyond bagels.

                                                                                      Bubba's in the Wesley shopping center
                                                                                      Notable: They have a good wine herring. They also have black-and-white, caramel-and-white and all white cookies, and pareve cheese danishes that are pretty close to the real thing.

                                                                                      Eli's Bagels (near Maple and Union)
                                                                                      Notable: I like the potatoes they serve with their eggs. They have a pizza store attached.

                                                                                      Atrium Bagels
                                                                                      Notable: I happen to like their shakshuka. Lot's of ice cream choices.

                                                                                      Bagel D'Lox
                                                                                      Notable: Good all around. Often go here. Great bakery a couple doors down called Rugalech. A few doors in the other direction you have Tuvia's, one of the zanier Judaica stores in the world. Worth a peek.

                                                                                      The Challah Fairy in New City
                                                                                      Notable: Out of the box. If you like sweet, their flagship challah is amazing. I could see how some people here at Chowhound might like this one the best.

                                                                                      Bagel store in New Square
                                                                                      I don't remember anything special about it, but it is around the corner, I believe, from Tam Eden, a good simple bakery.

                                                                                      The new one that stands out is:
                                                                                      Hava Java in an entrance to Evergreen. Looks very promising. It would be at home in a Whole Foods Market. That's probably the one people will ask you about later.

                                                                                      Happy noshing!

                                                                                1. re: WithaSmile

                                                                                  Well, unfortunately at last moment my Mother didn't feel strong enough even for this short distance trip and had to be home for the days I planned to go there. So I had to cancel 2 nights in Hilton Garden and now we are spending our days in Brooklyn, mostly inside the air conditioned apartment. Most of the food I see is taken from Moisha's and we also went once to Spoons on 13-th which was very nice but we didn't eat there, just cap of tea. Hope someone else will find this thread useful, because for my taste this was really state of the art discussion. Thanks for all who took part of it.

                                                                                  1. re: yzksn

                                                                                    May your mother be strong and healthy!

                                                                                    Tichleh shanah v'klaloseha;

                                                                                    Tachel shanah u'virchoseha.

                                                                                    1. re: yzksn

                                                                                      Enjoy these precious days with your mother, great food is one of life's pleasures, not its center.

                                                                                      1. re: yzksn

                                                                                        Glad that you got to spend the time together. I remember that when my grandmother was getting older, she did not travel well. We would bring her food from Gottliebs in Williamsburg, which would be really unhealthy normally, but--at her age--Simchas Hachaim (enjoying life) was way more important. Be well, both of you.