By Taylor Smith

Looking for something fresh and new to serve at your next cocktail party? Two Robbers Hard Seltzer just announced the launch of its fourth flavor, Peach Berry, due to be released in January 2020. more

By Taylor Smith

Celebrate the Festival of Lights with Hanukkah candy and chocolates from See’s Candies. Like all of See’s products, the bite-size Toffee-ettes, Pecan Buds, Almond Royals, Café Latte Little Pops, and Peanut Brittle are made from scratch. See’s Toffee-ettes are, in fact, a year-round treat and one of the company’s very best sellers. And they still use Mary See’s original recipe! more

By Taylor Smith

Each year, Scots from around the world gather in the darkest days of winter for a traditional evening meal and celebration to commemorate the birthday of one of their favorite native sons, Robert Burns. Born on a tenant farm on January 25, 1759 in the village of Alloway, near Ayr, Burns’s early life was marked by back-breaking work on a succession of small family farms. With an ear for Scottish folk songs and traditional stories passed down by his mother, Burns grew to become a widely-respected poet and lyricist. more

By Taylor Smith

November is still a fantastic time to find fresh fruits and vegetables at area farmers markets. Here are just a few to look for: more

Morris Canal and Smith’s General Store at Waterloo Village, New Jersey. (Photo by Zeete, Wikimedia Commons)

By William Uhl

MORRIS

Morris County is making old new again, starting with the Morris Canal. A relic of its time, the historic commercial waterway fell into disrepair over a century ago. Recently, however, the canal has found a new life in bits and pieces: passionate volunteers are restoring sections as hiking trails and bike routes for public use, a project known as the Morris Canal Greenway. Currently stretching just over 4 miles, it will eventually extend between the New Jersey Transportation Heritage Museum and Waterloo Village, a historic canal town.

On the eastern edge of Morristown, the Schuyler-Hamilton House preserves another important part of history — the wartime romance between Alexander Hamilton and his wife Betsy Schuyler. In the late 1700s, General Washington sent Hamilton to Morristown to prepare the townspeople for the second winter encampment. Within the walls of the house, Hamilton and Schuyler met, and later courted, before marrying in Albany in 1780. Though its outside appearance is everyday, the interior is filled with historical artifacts such as portraits, furniture, and tools from centuries ago. more

By Taylor Smith

Beneduce Vineyards in Pittstown, Hunterdon County, is a passion project of Michael Beneduce Sr. and his son, Mike Beneduce Jr. As a family rooted in farming for multiple generations, the Beneduces have a distinct love and understanding of the Garden State’s soil. more

By Taylor Smith

This year’s Oktoberfest Celebration at Asbury Festhalle & Biergarten  (asburybiergarten.com) will take place on Saturday and Sunday, October 12 and 13. Beginning each day at noon, the tented biergarten celebration offers plenty of food, beer, live polka bands, and Oktoberfest fun. more

By Taylor Smith 

Stepping into Daily Provisions at 103 East 19th Street in Manhattan brings to mind gourmet trick-or-treating.  more

By Taylor Smith 

Serving lunch, dinner, brunch, and cocktails in quaint New Hope, Pa., since 1978, Karla’s Restaurant at 5 West Mechanic Street features a European flair and an open-air setting that offers plenty of opportunities for people watching. Yelp reviewers repeatedly recommend both the outdoor seating and sunroom dining experiences. 

Tasty brunch offerings include a quiche du jour and house salad, Bananas Foster French Toast, multiple variations of Eggs Benedict, and a tantalizing lineup of omelettes (fresh herb and cream cheese, anyone?). more

Photo Courtesy of Russ & Daughters

By Taylor Smith 

It’s hot in New York City, but have no fear — Russ & Daughters’ (https://www.russanddaughters.com) original Babka Ice Cream Sandwiches are available at their shop at 179 E Houston Street, and at the Brooklyn Navy Yard (141 Flushing Avenue), for $7. The sandwich treats can also be purchased after 5:30 p.m. at their Cafe at 127 Orchard Street.  more

By Taylor Smith 

Tickets for the 2019 New York City Wine & Food Festival (NYCWFF), to be held October 10-13, are on sale now at https://nycwff.org. 

Since its beginning, NYCWFF has raised over $12.5 million to help fight hunger. One hundred percent of the net proceeds from the event benefit Food Bank for New York City and the No Kid Hungry Campaign to end childhood hunger in America and the five boroughs of New York City. Every year, NYCWFF raises nearly $1 million for these charities, effectively aiding in the quest to end the hunger gap in our country.  more

Photo Credit: Point Lobster Company in Point Pleasant Beach, NJ

By Taylor Smith

Something about ocean air and salt water brings to mind the satisfaction of enjoying a cold drink and tasty meal on the boardwalk. Before the summer ends, be sure to take advantage of these upcoming food festivals at the Jersey Shore! more

By Taylor Smith 

Trish Pepe Lauden and Diane Aemisegeo are two moms who wanted to be able to craft a fresh, natural, non-syrupy or sugary cocktail at home. Both admittedly enjoy the challenge of cooking locally and seasonally, and wanted this to be reflected in at-home drink offerings. Tired of having to frequent the same restaurants for a health-conscious cocktail, the two women created ROOT, which uses all-natural, organic ingredients to formulate the perfect cocktail (or mocktail) for your next neighborhood barbeque.  more

By Wendy Greenberg

A sure sign of summer is when tables and chairs are set outside at restaurants, frequently brightened by colorful umbrellas and accompanied by succulent summer menus. Whether you prefer an awning, an old-fashioned porch, or are a purist who shuns any barrier to the elements, now is the time to take advantage of the many alfresco options offered in the Northern New Jersey area.

One patron put it this way: “Why would I want to sit and eat in a place with artificial lighting, when I am in an office all day?” Area restaurateurs report that they field many requests for reservations at tables in the open air, even when clouds hang low.

“Alfresco dining creates a different energy and vibe,” says Chris Perez, general manager of Albariño in Shrewsbury. “It’s a more natural, rustic space in which to break bread.” more

By Taylor Smith 

Pizza in New York City is a hotly-contested subject, as everyone has their favorite. However, a Roman-style import on the Upper East Side is winning over new fans for its airy, crispy, square pies. 

PQR (Pizza Quadrata Romana), at 1631 2nd Avenue, uses “high hydration and long fermentation” to create a chewy, delightful pie crust that is based on the pizza of Rome. The mastermind behind PQR is Angelo Iezzi, who also happens to be president of the Associazione Pizzerie Italiane. more

By Taylor Smith 

Located south of Ocean City and just north of Stone Harbor and Avalon, Mike’s Seafood and Dock Restaurant has been a Jersey Shore staple in Sea Isle City since 1911.  more

By Taylor Smith 

Tucked away in West Cape May, Beach Plum Farm is a 62-acre working farm that produces over 100 varieties of fruits and vegetables, as well as chickens, eggs, and Berkshire hogs. Produce from Beach Plum Farms is used by a number of popular Cape May restaurants including Blue Pig Tavern, The Ebbitt Room, Louisa’s Cafe, the Boiler Room, and the Rusty Nail. The Farm is also home to a large market, farm kitchen, fine dining, and cottages. Visitors can easily spend an afternoon shopping, eating, and wandering the grounds, or even an entire weekend, to disconnect from the rushed pace of everyday life. Beach Plum also welcomes weddings and private events.  more

By Taylor Smith 

Blue Morel Restaurant and Wine Bar, located at 2 Whippany Road in Morristown, offers New American cuisine, a sushi and raw bar, and more than 70 wines by the glass. The culinary farm-to-table experience is open daily for breakfast, lunch, and dinner, along with an extended breakfast on Sundays until 1 p.m. more

By Taylor Smith 

Hoffman’s Ice Cream & Yogurt — with branches in Spring Lake Heights, Point Pleasant Beach, Little Silver, and Long Branch — seems to scream summer at the Shore. 

Beginning in 1955, Hoffman’s Ice Cream operated as one of the first Carvel Ice Cream stores in New Jersey. When the franchise expired in 1976, the owners changed the name to Hoffman’s and grew a reputation of their own. The store’s original location was, and still is, in Point Pleasant Beach. more

By Taylor Smith 

Slamwich Scratch Kitchen at 143 Main Street in Madison, N.J., was founded by Sam Freund and George Braun IV with the intent of perfecting the American craft of a handmade sandwich. Armed with the passion and understanding of what a delicatessen should be, the two founders pride themselves on making everything from scratch, including the cured pastrami, house bread, pickles, and condiments. The sandwiches are elevated enough, in terms of quality and taste profile, that Slamwich is actually a fantastic spot for a night out.  more

By Taylor Smith 

Located at 33 Bridge Street in historic Frenchtown, Early Bird Espresso has grown into a beloved coffee stop, particularly among the cycling community. With long daily hours (7 a.m. to 7 p.m.), Early Bird is seemingly always open for a quick pick-me-up. Early Bird’s roaster, Counter Culture (a very chocolate-driven, nutty brew), is complemented by Trickling Springs Creamery, a premium organic and non-GMO dairy in Chambersburg, Pa. more

By Taylor Smith 

Located on the Jersey Shore, Long Branch is a happening place with close proximity to New York City, NJ Transit trains, and Northern New Jersey. New to the area is Wave Resort, an extension of the recently-built Pier Village, which has become a shopping and dining hub for day trippers. Located at 110 Ocean Avenue, Wave Resort is a hotel and upscale spa. Visitors can lounge on the pool deck and take in expansive views of the Atlantic. There is also a swim-up bar and an upscale Mediterranean-inspired restaurant known as 1000 Ocean.  more

By Taylor Smith 

With over 20 unique frosting flavors and a variety of fresh and decadent toppings, Cinnaholic is not your average cinnamon roll dessert shop. As seen on ABC’s hit TV show Shark Tank, all of Cinnaholic’s products are made with 100 percent plant-based ingredients and are dairy and lactose free, egg free, and cholesterol free.  more

By Taylor Smith 

Chatham Bagels at 260 Main Street in charming Chatham, N.J., has many things going for it. 

In terms of quality, area residents state that the bagel shop rivals the best bagels in New York City. The shop is known for its huge bagels and chewy, satisfying texture. All bagels are made fresh in-house daily, so there is never a question of whether or not you will be able to purchase a hot bagel early in the morning. The gluten-free bagels have also won over fans, with many people stopping at the shop from neighboring towns to get their favorite wheat-free bagel fix.  more

By Taylor Smith 

Many neighborhoods, one Middletown!

The sprawling township of Middletown borders the Monmouth County communities of Atlantic Highlands, Colts Neck Township, Fair Haven, Hazlet, Highlands, Holmdel, Keansburg, Red Bank, Rumson, Sea Bright and Tinton Falls. The Sandy Hook peninsula is also within Middletown Township, though it is not connected to the township by land, but can be accessed along Raritan Bay by boat.  more

Photo Credit: @smorgasburg

By Taylor Smith 

Spring is upon us, which means more sunshine, longer days, flowers blooming, and the desire to get out and explore! The North Jersey area offers a roster full of spring happenings, from foodie adventures to shopping opportunities and the celebration of nature. Here are a few to check out. Time to mark your calendar! more

By Taylor Smith 

Situated on Church Street, the latest bakery to hit downtown Montclair is decidedly French in scope and personality. 

Owner and head baker Arben Gasi makes special effort to use New Jersey-sourced ingredients for the regional French menu. The majority of food products are from an urban farm in East Orange, and all of the cheese is made in the Garden State. “We use organic, stoneground flour so we minimize the loss of nutrients,” says Gasi.  more

By Taylor Smith 

Located at 179 East Houston Street in Manhattan, Russ & Daughters was founded in 1907 by Joel Russ, who had recently immigrated from Poland. He began his life in New York City by selling herring out of a barrel on the Lower East Side to crowds of hungry and homesick Eastern European Jews. Over the course of seven years, Russ graduated from a barrel to a pushcart. Soon, the popular pushcart became a horse and wagon operation, and in 1914 Russ had saved enough money to open a physical store. While the original business was located on Orchard Street, Russ moved the store to nearby 179 East Houston Street in 1920, where it has remained ever since.  more

The Jersey Shore’s original acai shop now has more than 50 locations nationwide

By Taylor Smith 

With multiple locations in Monmouth, Ocean, Middlesex, Morris, Union, and Essex counties, Playa Bowls (https://playabowls.com) is now a big part of the New Jersey food scene. 

If you’ve visited towns like Belmar, Red Bank, Asbury Park, Seaside, or Toms River during the summer months, chances are you’ve known about Playa Bowls for a long time. What originally started out as a food truck is now a popular staple in New York City, New Jersey, and Pennsylvania, with 20 more locations planned in the near future.  more