Skip to main content

Manhattan & NJ (Bergen County) Restaurant Reviews

Ian Hunter's Guide to Manhattan and Bergen County, NJ's Best Restaurants, Bars, and Gourmet Markets

NYC- Dine by Neighborhood
Bergen- DINE by TOWN
Towns: A-D
Towns: E-G
Towns: H-L
Towns: M-O
Towns: P-R
Towns: S-Z
NYC- BARS by Neighborhood
Gourmet Markets by Genre
Suggested Sites
Top 10s of NYC
About Us
Site Map
Contact Us
Member Login
Music, Bands & Artists

Allendale Steakhouse: Steakhouse; Allendale; 95 W Allendale Av; 22/18/$55; 201-962-9797; Excellently flavored steaks; Closed Monday;  BYO – hugely rare for a steakhouse; Try the porterhouse for 2 or the lamb chops; Great chilled seafood platter appetizer; Jumbo lump crabmeat; Chef is a former Benjamin Steakhouse & Lugar allum; Surf & Turf for $41; Rib Eye; Swordfish; Great sides. 


Masa Sushi & Grill: Japanese; Allendale; 81 W Allendale Av; 23/17/$42; 201-934-6616; Great food served by a welcoming staff;  Large menu with lots of non-traditional items such as Lamb Chop appetizer;  King Crab app; Salmon or Tuna tartare; Amazing dumplings; Shrimp tempura to die for; Omakase available; BYO; The sushi is swimmingly fresh; Absolutely worth a visit.


Savini: Italian; Allendale; 168 W Crescent Av; 22/20/$43; 201-760-3700; Beautiful setting in a country house;  Date-friendly; Menu includes Caprese, Smoked Salmon, Seafood Salad, Crab Cocktail, Rock Shrimp, Lobster Tails Fra Diavolo, Shrimp scampi, Crème Brulee. Enjoy dinner by the fireplace in winter; Lots of specials as well;  Lively bar scene;  Crowd is 30s-50s. 2014 Best of Bergen for best wine list, cocktails, & 2nd for Italian 

KikuJapanese; Alpine; 5-9 Route 9W; 23/23/$42; 201-767-6322; Hibachi show- skilled chefs performing as they cook for you; Top notch slice and dice show; Pretty tasty sushi and sashimi as well; Great for dates or groups and special events; Gorgeous Alpine location. Exotic drinks. Fun time. Huge portions; Only restaurant in Alpine – maybe you’ll spot a local celeb. 201 Mag winner for best Japanese. I love the place.  
Chapala GrillMexican; Bergenfield; 52 S Washington Av; 23/16/$36; 201-387-2107; Fairly authentic Mexican classics; Gigantic menu consisting of any variety of combos and specialties; Guac and drinks are flavorful and a highlight; Mid-scale in terms of fanciness. Appealing service. Great neighborhood find; Try the fresh fruit margaritas or fish tacos; Full bar;  Rack of Lamb; Incredible enchiladas & Fajitas.
AkiJapanese; Bloomfield; 1273 Broad St; 22/17/$35; 973-338-5030; Tons of sushi, sashimi and rolls to pick from; Cooked entrees as well; Dinner box specials; Well presented and tranquil; More affordable sushi alternative without sacrificing freshness. Exotic rolls as well.  It’s BYO. Great website;  Offer brunch as well (all you can eat for $21); Cool, local neighborhood place- but not fancy. 

Bloomfield Steak & Seafood House:  Seafood/Steak; Bloomfield; 409 Franklin St; 21/18/$38; 973-680-4500;  Occupies a 17th century home; Friendly staff aim to please; Outdoor patio in summer; Full bar with “heavy pours”; Closed Monday; Try: the angry shrimp, Crab Bisque, Sea Bass, Honey garlic wings, Clams, and the large assortment of steaks. Have a nice burger as well. 

Brookside ThaiThai; Bloomfield; 380 Broad St @ Pitt; 22/19/$27; 973-566-0057; What a long, mouthwatering menu; BYO; All of your favorite Thai selections; Try the Pad Thai and Panang Curry; Delightful spices; Very large portions. $6.95 lunch specials M-F; Dirt cheap even for dinner as most entrees are under $10.  I’d get 3 main courses for 2 and split them like a buffet! 
Pandan Asian CuisineFilipino / Asian Fusion; Bloomfield; 406 Broad St @ Baldwin; 24/17/$30; 973-748-9997; Focus on Filipino cuisine; Huge portions in an intimate, cozy setting; Try the various Dumplings; Soups are a meal in themselves; Pork and Chicken dishes stand. Leftovers for sure. BYO; Delicious Thai selections as well. And, the prices are oh so right. Go crazy and share 3 dishes if you are two people to fully explore the menu. Very inexpensive meal for dinner.  

Spice Thai Cuisine: Thai; Bloomfield; 26 Belleville Ave; 24/21/$27; Absolutely authentic cooking; BYO; Can get crowded; Excellent service; Incredibly good reviews on Yelp;  People love the authentic flavors and the spicy offerings; Closed Monday; Soft Shell Crab; Yellow Chicken Curry; Pad See Eiw; Thai Basil Duck; The menu has nearly 100 choices on it and the service is top notch. Try this restaurant!


Stamna Greek TavernaGreek; Bloomfield; 1045 Broad St; 25/18/$33; 973-338-5151; Extremely affordable Greek cuisine; Menu has large selection of Grilled Meat and Seafood dishes; Also serves about every known appetizer and Greek traditional favorites in a comfortable, if uneventful setting. BYO. Try the appetizer spread platter (dips); Rabbit stew, Lamb Kabobs, Moussaka; Grilled Calamari; Large portions;  Family run;  One of the best Greek menus I’ve seen – 2nd only to Varka. Fall off the bone lamb.  


La FamigliaItalian; Bogota; 107 E Main St @ Palisade; 23/15/$33; 201-489-1713;Menu highlights include house-made pastas, traditional Italian appetizers, fresh fish and flavorful meats; BYO; Filled nightly with locals, staff will treat you like family; Extremely affordable classics are served. Calamari Fra Diavolo, Chicken Francese, Linguini con Vongole stand out. As authentic as it gets. Specials galore.

Riviera Maya: Mexican; Bogota; 252 East Fort Lee Rd; 21/15/$26; 201-996-1380; Live Music Thurs and Friday; Authentic cuisine, under the radar local spot; Extremely affordable and surprisingly good; Large portions; BYO – rare for a Mexican place;  Come here when you are craving Mexican and prepare for leftovers; All the standards well prepared.

Biggies: Seafood; Carlstadt; 430 Rt 17S @ Broad St; 19/17/$33; 201-933-4000; Truly a seafood-centric sports bar that is always popular due to drink specials and food specials and overall great pricing; It’s a fun place to go;  Don’t expect expert service if its busy; Known for amazing clams; Two Hoboken locations not listed on my site; Cheesecake Factory sized menu (and quality).  Nice raw bar. 
Gianna’s: Italian; Carlstadt; 843 Washington Av @ Moonachie; 21/18/$41; 201-460-7997; Been around since 2000 and they focus on huge family style portions; Thus, this place is great with a group of 6 or more; Individual portions available; Nice bar area;  Good bang for the buck if you go family style; Attentive staff; Some question the overall product.  Large menu; Excellent soups. Shrimp Scampi is great.

Hunkar Restaurant: Turkish; Carlstadt; 319 Hackensack St; 25/21/$29; 201-507-0606; Has BYO; the full package of cool décor, attentive service and authentic cuisine cooked to perfection;  Back patio with Manhattan views; Home cooked meals; Get the mixed grill, I demand it!  Shepards salad is spot on; Tons to pick from on extensive menu; Order lots to share. Alternative to eating Greek.

Il VillaggioItalian; Carlstadt; 651 Rt 17N @ Passaic Av; 24/23/$47; 201-935-7733; Upscale, mature setting; Classic Northern Italian dishes; The double cut Veal Chop and Crème Brulee stand out; Fairly large menu that is composed of both complex and commonly seen dishes; Excellent, reliable restaurant. Calamari fra Diablo; Mature date night or perfect for mature crowd; Great wine list. Endless specials… King Crab appetizer even. Truly a great place. Even has a large bar area. Function hall/ weddings too.  Full bar.
Steve’s Sizzling SteaksSteakhouse; Carlstadt; 620 Rt 17 @ Passaic Av; 23/15/$45; 201-438-9677; Thick,  juicy well seasoned steaks; Down home, relaxed setting; Perfect before a trip to the NJ sports complexes; French Onion soup outstanding; Steak Fries epic; Also, known for an excellent burger. Inexpensive for steak.  Fun website. As casual and welcoming as it gets. Mixed reviews on service. Full bar. Jumbo Crab Claws; Grilled Steak Tips over salad; Cowboy, Ribeye, Porterhouse, Filet, Sirloin.   

Dayi’nin Yeri: Turkish; Cliffside Park; 333 Palisade Av; 25/17/$31; 201-840-1770;  Amazing Turkish BYO;  Kababs are other worldly;  Lamb Chops are succulent; Pita bread baked fresh daily; Best Kunefe in Jersey; All the local Turkish people rave about the authenticity; I suggest getting the large mixed appetizer and then a combo Kebab for main course (to share of course). Have many Turkish pizzas as well. 

Petite Soo ChowChinese; Cliffside Park; 607 Gorge Rd; 23/13/$32; 201-313-1666; BYO; Shanghai style Chinese; Very   popular in the area; Endless menu; Soup Dumplings are their signature dish, called Xiaolongbao;  Dim Sum typical menu; Always packed. Similar to Joe’s Shanghai in Manhattan. One of the best (and only) sit-down Chinese restaurants in Bergen. A sorely lacking genre. Best for weekend lunch. NY Times loves them!   
BucoItalian; Clifton; 953 Allwood Rd @ Rt 602; 22/17/$37; 973-779-3500; Popular old school Jersey Italian joint; Friendly service, large portions, and one of the biggest menus you’ll ever see; Tons of pasta, chicken, port and veal dishes; Great place to go with family and good for groups.  7 soups on the menu. Also, well spaced tables.  Romantic vibe for couples. Nice wine list (full bar). Mmm Seafood salad. 
Chengdu 46Chinese; Clifton; 1105 Rt 46 @ Rock Hill Rd; 23/18/$41; 973-777-8855; Upscale Chinese that could use a facelift; Has a bar and wine list;  Solid reviews in Zagats and can Chinese food, both high end and regular take out, ever be that far apart?  Worth dining out here overall. $14.95 Sunday Lunch special perfect time to go. Gets better every year.  Peking Duck amazing. For a ‘nicer’ Chinese experience.
La Riviera Trattoria: Italian; Clifton; 421 Piaget Av; 24/20/$45; 973-478-4181; Rave reviews on Yelp; Stuffed Artichoke is a favorite; Closed Monday; Formal-ish; Chilled seafood salad; Bufala Mozz; Homemade pastas; Lots of specials served daily; Calamari Salad; Excellent antipasto; Chicken “Hunter” style; Calamari Costa Viola; Shrimp scampi. Amazing service. 

Matthew’s: Italian; Clifton; 1131 Bloomfield Av; 24/19/$38; 973-928-4300; Classy, cozy restaurant ideal for a date; Excellent service; Food cooked to order; Freshest ingredients; Restaurant that cares; Full bar; Young energetic owner; Very inexpensive overall; Shrimp cocktail, Stuffed Artichoke, Antipastos, Seafood salad, excellent soups, Stuffed Shrimp or scampi, Calamari Fra Diavolo stand out.

TorosTurkish; Clifton; 489 Hazel St; 23/21/$36; 973-772-8032; Beautifully decorated inside- old world Turkish décor and furniture; Website is excellent- featuring pictures of all the dishes for newcomers; Authentic, tasty dishes; Usual kebabs, breads and spreads; Great Turkish beer available. $11.95 multi course lunch special. Wine list. You will be surprised how much you enjoyed it. Check out their site.

Bone Gusto: Italian; Closter;  534 Durie Av @ High; 24/15/$35; 201-784-9036; Charming BYO Italian; The menu is large and the list of specials even larger;  If you crave it – they will make it for you;  Suffers from cramp seating don’t go if there is more than 4 of you;  Food is outstanding here as is the service. Home cooked meals and staff are all knowledgeable about menu. Tons of regulars here. 


Locale: Italian; Closter; 208 Piermont; 21/21/$53; 201-750-3233; Italian-Med flavor; Exposed brick fire place décor and great bar area; Private functions; Great martinis, cocktails; Outdoor seating; Buffalo Mozz, Smoken Salmon, Shellfish platters, Escargot, Dozen pasta dishes, Long Island Duck, Zuppa di Pesce, Rib Eye Steak, Veal dishes;  Lots of effort and variety. 201 Mag: Top 3 outdoor dining. 


Rudy’s: Italian; Closter; 71 Closter Plaza; 24/14/$31; 201-768-8444; 201 Mag Best Pizza 2014 runner up. Incredible pizza; Homemade Lasagna; Try the Rudy’s Special “Sonya” salad with grilled calamari or chicken; Amazing cold and hot subs; Monster sized pasta dishes; Endless menu; Old school real-deal Italian cuisine; Huge take out business; Has full bar – dirt cheap martinis and house wine. 

Sear House: Steakhouse; Closter; 411 Piermont Rd; 24/25/$64; 201-768-2011; Finally a steakhouse with a gorgeous, sleek interior and romantic female-friendly vibe; Excellent bar scene and wonderful cocktails; Very attentive service; Amazing thick bacon by the slice; Menu highlights: Crab Cake; Mozz & Tomatoes; Onion Soup; Rib Eye; NY Sirloin; Porterhouse; Sushi grade Tuna; Lobster; Broiled Shrimp. Lobster Mashed and Mac N Cheese; Just high quality rivaling The Park.
SamdanTurkish; Cresskill; 178 Piermont Rd @ Union Av; 22/16/$35; 201-816-7343; The grilled seafood and meats stand out; Kebab heaven; Dining room somewhat plain and formal- certainly a mature setting; Very traditional dishes; One of the few Turkish restaurants in county. Interesting wine list; Limited seafood options; Easy-to-share portions; Fairly priced main courses. If you love lamb, prepare!  Website has pictures of all the dishes.

Fink’s: American; Dumont; 26 W Madison Av; 23/15/$30;  201-384-3210; 201 Mag best BBQ in 2013; Has a full bar; Rave reviews for what is the best BBQ in Bergen;  They have shrimp, smoked wings, bacon wrappen sausage on a stick, Beer/cheese pretzels.  Also the classics:  Pulled Pork, Spare Ribs, BBQ Chicken.  Sampler plates available. Also a great take-out option. 

Il MulinoItalian; Dumont; 132 Veterans Plaza; 22/18/$41; 201-384-8016; Reliable southern Italian from the owners of Café Italiano in Englewood Cliffs; Soft Shell crab in season is excellent; BYO policy always helps; Attentive staff and a relaxed, casual environment; Menu has something for everyone and always some daily specials to entice; Great family or date restaurant. Sauteed calamari.