Many are familiar with New York City’s Restaurant Row but did you know that New Jersey has its own Restaurant Row, right across the river? It should come as no surprise that Jersey City has such an amenity; it was selected as the most livable city in America, after all. And what’s one thing that makes a city livable? Dining options!
Jersey City's Restaurant Row runs primarily along Newark Avenue, between Grove Street and Coles Street.
Restaurant Row was established years ago and expanded in 2011 to make Downtown Jersey City more business friendly. The goal was also to create a thriving commercial district, improve quality of life, and transform the area into a destination. Culinary gems cater to locals and visitors alike, bringing life to the neighborhood. By being part of the Restaurant Row, establishments with liquor licenses are exempt from the law that normally forces them to be at least 520 feet apart. So far, this strategy has been a success, and Restaurant Row is flooded with fantastic eateries...following are a few favorites.
Just BeClaws - 280 1st Street
Opened in 2015, this seafood spot also serves up Vietnamese and Cajun cuisine. New York Magazine featured this eatery in an article about must try seafood boils - it was the only restaurant outside of NYC to get a mention. The menu offers a raw bar, all kinds of crab, and even non-seafood options like wings. Where else can you get lobster with a side of egg noodles and cajun fries?
Left Bank Burger Bar - 194 Newark Avenue
Opened in 2013, this burger joint may be best known for their weekly burger battles...they're constantly coming up with crazy, crave worthy creations. Even the daily menu is sure to delight with unique options like the Sue She with ahi tuna, avocado, Asian slaw, and sriracha mayo, and the Ghostface Killer, complete with ghost pepper jam, smoked gouda, and sweet-potato bacon tots. The Ghostface Killer burger was featured on the Food Network! In addition to burgers, you can enjoy a seasonal selection of draft beer.
Pet Shop - 193 Newark Avenue
This laid back bar often offers evening entertainment and the drinks are all sublime but I'd visit for the vegetarian menu alone. More than just salads, you'll find a sizable selection of vegetarian and vegan dishes including buffalo cauliflower, hickory smoked jackfruit sliders, and quinoa bowls. Visit on Tuesdays for mushroom, cactus, potato, or avocado tacos.
Talde - 8 Erie Street
Open for dinner, drinks, and brunch, this Asian fusion eatery serves up spectacular dishes including kung pao chicken wings, pretzel pork and chive dumplings, and grilled octopus salad. Tuesdays are for tapas like bacon wrapped plantains and crispy deviled eggs.
South House - 149 Newark Avenue
If you're looking for a little southern comfort, this bar and restaurant doesn't disappoint. You'll be transported to Austin, Texas with general southern goodness mixed in. Dine on fried green tomatoes, Cajun shrimp and grits or Texas Frito pie. You'll find three laid back floors, filled with fun amenities including a rec room. It comes complete with a pool table, foosball, two shuffle board tables, two dart boards, as well as two tables that can be used for both chess and checkers. They've also got live music.
Skinner's Loft & Cove - 146 Newark Avenue
The perfect warm weather dining spot, you're going to love the rooftop garden. They serve up contemporary American cuisine for dinner and brunch including pan seared filet mignon and stout glazed double cut pork chops. Check out the small plates menu! Options include mini chorizo corn dogs, fried avocado wedges, and buffalo chicken spring rolls.
Porta - 135 Newark Avenue
It's New Jersey, so you know any Restaurant Row is going to have a pizzeria. According to the New York Times, "Porta achieves a near miracle – making Italian food,
a culinary staple in the Garden State, seem fresh and new." There are plenty of options to please every pizza lover, including vegan picks (Rita & Mark - San Marzano tomatoes,
vegan parm, garlic,
dried oregano, basil,
extra virgin olive oil) and delights for meat lovers (Lamboni - fontina béchamel, lamb
garlic, extra virgin olive oil).
Downtown Yogurt - 126 Newark Avenue
Craving something sweet? This is the spot for you. While there isn't much seating, Downtown Yogurt does deliver locally, or you can take your treats to go. While the froyo is fantastic, you'll fall in love with the cookie dough - it's my favorite!
Have you ever dined on Jersey City’s Restaurant Row? What’s your favorite eatery? For a nearby dining destination you’ll love, check out the sizable selection of cuisines in Hoboken by