It may be hard for anyone outside the Garden State to believe, but according to Peter Genovese, a Food and Features writer for The Star-Ledger, it’s a fact.
The truth is that food-wise, New Jersey takes a back seat to no one. We have it all here, in one compact package of a state. From high-end to low-rent, from fussy, white-tablecloth restaurants to sketchy yet delicious dives, New Jersey is food heaven.
And it’s time the rest of the world acknowledged us as such.
There is definitely a lot of good stuff to eat in New Jersey. But what could possibly make it the culinary center of the universe? Genovese’s impassioned defense of Jersey food can be enjoyed here (there is a little attitude, but we would expect nothing less).
Genovese knows his subject. He is the author of ten books, and The Star-Ledger’s Munchmobile series takes him all over the state in search of the best food Jersey has to offer. He does not travel incognito.
Does New Jersey Have an Inferiority Complex?
You might say that New Jersey is tired of living in the shadow of New York. At the same time, the small state benefits from its proximity. Many chefs who worked at fine restaurants in New York City come to Jersey to open their first eateries.
Yes, world-class dining is readily available in New Jersey. D’Artagnan is proud to supply many of the finest restaurants in New Jersey, including some mentioned in the article:
Among the many others alluded to, Genovese might have included some of our best NJ clients. Consider this our list of recommended restaurants in NJ:
Ariane Kitchen and Bar in Verona
Bernards Inn in Bernardsville
Restaurant Latour in Hamburg
Highlawn Pavilion in West Orange
Summit House in Summit
Elements in Princeton
Ninety Acres in Peapack-Gladstone
Café Panache in Ramsey
Turtle + The Wolf in Montclair
Common Lot in Millburn
Restaurant Nicholas in Red Bank
New Jersey is the Most Edible State
Even Saveur, one of the best magazines for thoughtful articles about food culture, came to the conclusion that New Jersey is worthy of attention.
After dozens of hours of research and cases of antacids, the hypothesis of our enterprise is this: New Jersey is America’s most edible state, with a food culture more rich, diverse, and passionate than even big names like California and New York. This isn’t a matter of paying overdue appreciation to an underdog; it’s recognition that, by so many measures of what makes a place’s food enlightening and profound and just plain delicious, New Jersey is simply the most logical champion of good eating. – Saveur, April 2016
Saveur dedicated a month to exploring the food of New Jersey, and if you enjoy really digesting a topic, you can find the results of their investigation into NJ culinary culture here.
We should have mentioned it sooner, but D’Artagnan is located in New Jersey, and has been for over 30 years. We like to think we’ve contributed to making the state a tastier one … and out staff certainly enjoys many of the dining options in New Jersey, from family-owned ethnic restaurants to the prolific pizzerias across the state.
Are you a fan of New Jersey cuisine? Tell us your favorites right here, or find us on social media: @dartagnanfoods on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter. We love to talk about food!
Featured image: New Jersey food map by Alex Testere, Saveur