Archive for the ‘food’ Category

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Trinity Restaurant in Keyport

August 3, 2008

I admit: I’m a sucker for a good theme.

Whether it’s a park, a party, a store, or a restaurant, I just love those little visual and sensory touches that bring an immersive design together. For me, a well-done, fun theme can make the difference between a good experience and an amazing one.

Trinity Restaurant in Keyport, NJ

Trinity Restaurant in Keyport, NJ

I had heard a lot of good things about Trinity Restaurant (84 Broad Street in Keyport), so my husband and I decided to check it out. Talk about a well-done theme! Not only is the restaurant housed inside a beautiful little converted church, but the slightly cheeky religious motif extends into other details: the bible-black menus with section titles like “In the Beginning” and “Into the Fire,” the custom wrought-iron railings with tiny crosses, the sumptuous red draperies, and the intact hymn boards in the corners, to name a few. I could barely keep myself from gaping at the serene beauty of the place. It’s definitely a restaurant in which the building is part of the attraction – if you go, be sure to give yourself a tour.

All right, so enough about the surroundings. How was the food?

In a word, heavenly. (Sorry, couldn’t resist.)

We started with the Green and White Asparagus appetizer, which was drizzled with vinaigrette: delicious and perfect for a warm summer day. My husband then ordered the Hukilau Pot, a savory seafood stew with veggies and couscous. His exact quote was: “This is the best one of these I’ve ever had,” which definitely means something, since he is quite the seafood connoisseur.

In keeping with our predilection towards fruits of the sea, I had the Pure and Simple Broiled Monkfish. The citrus and basil oil was delicate and tangy, the fish was deliciously moist, and the vegetables were steamed to perfection.

Dessert was chocolate, as it usually is with us: Malted Milk Pannacotta with sea salt sprinkled on top. Kind of like a chocolate-covered pretzel in custard form. Delicious!

Throughout the meal, the service was friendly and quick, and we were lucky enough to have a chat with the owner and the chef before we left. It’s not often that you actually get to give your compliments to the chef, so we happily did so.

All in all, our dinner at Trinity was a real treat. After eating at so many chains from day to day, it seems like an almost spiritual experience to partake of food prepared by a real, honest-to-goodness chef with a focus on taste and presentation. It’s a theme restaurant, yes, but thankfully that theme is paired with a true dedication to cuisine and a great sense of customer service.

Our rating? Truly transcendental.
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Rachael Citron lives in Matawan, where she owns Glass Slipper Weddings and Events, a full-service wedding and party planning service. She can be reached at rachael@glassslipperweddings.com.

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Matawan Barbeque

July 27, 2008

Matawan Barbeque is still not open, but they have signage. They will be open seven days a week, 10AM-10PM. I wrote down the number but when I call it, the operator says it’s not in service. Hmm.

UPDATE: I tried Matawan Barbeque on Wednesday night. I walked in around 8:30 and ordered to go. The place was about half filled, so I was served right away. During my short wait I checked the place out. There are 12 tables, so it can accommodate a small family or group. There are a variety of soft drinks and other beverages in drink cases. I chose a brand of diet Brazilian soda called Gurana (in a can). It was tasty!

So, how was the food you ask? Pretty good! I ordered the half BBQ chicken with yellow rice and beans. The portions were quite generous and everything was tasty. Prices are extremely reasonable. There are soups, salads, appetizers, barbeque combo’s, entrees (beef, chicken, pork), and fish/seafood (shrimp, salmon, cod). My platter was only $7.50. The most expensive item on the menu is a whole Grilled or Boiled Cod Fish (Bacalhau) at $18.00. I hope to try them again before I move.

FYI: I overheard the server say they are looking for more help, both in the kitchen and also more servers. So if you or someone you know is looking for a job, either call them or walk in. Here’s their number: 732-242-9946

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Brazilian & Portuguese BBQ coming soon to Matawan!

July 3, 2008

Brazilian and Portuguese BBQ coming to Matawan!On Main Street across from the train station, a new BBQ joint is “Coming Soon”.  It’ll be situated in the middle of the building between the cleaners and dog groomer.   There are a few big signs on the store front windows; one practically yells “Matawan BBQ“, another proclaiming “Brazilian & Portuguese BBQ“, and another with a list of the types of foods that will be available.

No word on opening date.  There’s a number, too, on one of the signs, but the light turned green and I didn’t have a chance to write it down.

I’m excited. I love BBQ.  I don’t have much experience with Brazilian or Portuguese BBQ, but I’ve always wanted to try.  I hope it opens before the end of the summer!  Stay tuned.

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Keyport International Food and Music Festival Day 1

June 28, 2008

My plan was to go to Espresso Joe’s in Keyport for lunch today.  I got in the car and headed over to Keyport.  When I turned onto Front Street, I saw that it was blocked off and, much to my pleasure, a street fair was going on.  I love street fairs!  So I found a parking spot on a side street, and walked up Main Street.

Lining both sides of the streets, vendors of all kinds were selling their wares… clothes, jewelry, accessories, candles, specialty items, and more.  Then I saw signs that said 1st Annual Keyport International Food and Music Festival.  Wow! I had NO idea this was taking place, yet something was drawing me to Keyport today.  I love happy surprises! Read the rest of this entry ?

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This Weekend in Red Bank & Asbury Park!

May 28, 2008

Very exciting time of year in Monmouth County for Jazz/Blues enthusiasts and Gays alike!

Friday kicks off the 22nd Annual Red Bank Jazz & Blues Festival at Marine Park. While I dig the music, I go more for the BBQ! Some of the best BBQ in NJ is to be had there for sure. I’m hoping to swing by on Friday night. Who’s game?

Edit: I missed out, I got home from work late and was too beat to head down.  :(

Sunday marks the 17th Annual Jersey Pride Celebration. As always there will be a parade, live entertainment, and, you guessed it, BBQ!!!!!! I look forward to “coming out” to support my gays! Who’s coming?

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Shanghai Bun

May 12, 2008

I just tried their steamed dumplings and vegetables and tofu soup.  Nothing to write home about, really.  In fact, I’ve had better.  I guess it’s the Dim Sum that really sets them apart, eh?

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Aki Sushi

April 12, 2008

We tried Aki Sushi last night, and our initial impression is this: great selection, real good quality! When they gave us the warm towels to wash our hands, they were real, terry-cloth towels! Not too many places do terry cloth these days. They were very warm and felt great on the hands.

When it came time to order we didn’t select an appetizer at all, we simply ordered the sashimi and sushi love boat as well as two special rolls figuring that would be enough to fill us. The Sahara Special had eel tempura, avocado inside, spicy salmon, tempura crunch outside. The Beauty Roll had spicy yellowtail, mango, tempura crunch inside, tuna and salmon outside. Both were very tasty and generously sized. I don’t like skimpy rolls. :)

The Love Boat consisted of 20 pieces of fresh sashimi, 10 pcs. of yummy sushi, tasty eel dragon roll and lobster salad roll. (photo at right is just a stock photo) The boat was attractively presented in addition to tasting great. I honestly can’t believe we ate all of that food, but it was simply delicious and we couldn’t help finish it all. We were quite full when we left, that’s for sure. I wanted to try a dessert, but I realized I just didn’t have the room for it.

In summary, as people who have tried dozens of (run-of-the-mill) sushi places around the area, we really enjoyed Aki Sushi. The decor doesn’t particularly “wow” you, but they have booths and tables alike. No hibachi tables! if you want cooked food, it’s made in the kitchen.

We recommend sushi lovers to definitely try them out, they are one of the better sushi restaurants in the Bayshore area.  4 out of 5 stars.

Aki Sushi
436 Route 36 (in the Super Foodtown strip mall )
Port Monmouth

732-471-8811

Monday-Thursday 4:30-10:00
Friday 4:30-10:30
Saturday 1:00-10:30
Sunday 12:00-9:30