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Food in Princeton


hillvalley
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For some unexplicable reason people in my life keep moving to Princeton. I've decided to deal with my fate of spending some serious time there by discovering the food scene.

What do I need to know, where do I need to shop/eat?

Are the farmers markets up and running yet? Gourmet shops I can't miss? Some whole in the wall that caters to students that has great _________. I know Wegman's is there, but I prefer to go the nonchain route.

Help me keep my stomach happy while in NJ!

True Heroism is remarkably sober, very undramatic.

It is not the urge to surpass all others at whatever cost,

but the urge to serve others at whatever cost. -Arthur Ashe

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1. Sakura Express serves cheap sushi and other Japanese fast food... The owners (Albert and Andrew) are great fun though they do hassle the customers. Getting to know them means that you will occasionally be publicly humiliated, but laugh all the same. When ever I come home, they still bug me about that ex-boyfriend from HIGH SCHOOL who they think that I should marry... And they've given every boyfriend since a very hard time. Tell them that Emily sent you, and they will mostly mutter and ask if I am married yet. Send them my love.

2. Halo Pub Ice Cream. Coffee Heath Bar with hot fudge. 'Nuff said.

3. Olives. Great salads and sandwiches. Take out, so drive to the battlefield and have a picnic.

4. Small World Coffee. If it is between Small World and Starbuck's, please got to Small World. The coffee is pretty good, and while the terrible S's put my favorite Princeton coffee house out of business, you might as well frequent the nice "hip" local one. They yell out funny names for coffee drinks, and the employees are usually pretty long term. Some of the same people have worked there since at least 1997.

5. Victor's Pizza. Try the Bacon and Potato pizza.

6. Triumph. Great burgers. If you like beer, this is the place to go.

7. PJ's Pancake house. It use to be the only place open late, until it burnt down in 1997. Then a couple of other places started staying open late... PJ's reopened, and is probably the same... Though I really don't know.

8. Hoagie Haven, "The Haven" to everyone except Westminster Choir College students who inexplicably call it "Hoagies". God I hope that it is still open. It is an institution. Bacon Cheesesteak. Or even the chicken fingers. It will be greasey, it may have things in it that belong in the "Foreign Objects" thread. You will get over it. You will eat everything, and you will be happy about it. Take Out.

9. George's is right next door to the Haven and reputed to be slightly less heart attack inducing. Hence, I never really frequented it. Take Out.

10. Carousel. Open until 2 am on weekends. Sweet Potato fries and Chocolate and Banana milkshakes. I think that they make a mean bowl of oatmeal as well.

Have fun! And do not forget to check out the Record Exchange!

-Emily

Edited by The Little Blue House (log)

----------------------------------------------

Emily in London

http://www.august18th2007.com

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The beer and food at Triumph Brewing Co. are adequate, nothing too remarkable, but it's all the town has.

Four dining experiences I would definitely NOT miss:

Conte's Pizza, 339 Witherspoon, nostaligic vibe, beautiful thin crusted pizzas.

Tiger Noodles, 260 Nassau St. simple rustic Sechuan cooking with a lovely garden dining area, and creative specials, easily the best Chinese in the area. Ask for Judy or Peter.

The Ferry House, 32 Witherspoon St. perhaps the best restaurant in town, with the very creative cooking of Chef Bobby Trigg, who has a real thing for mushrooms of all kinds. Here's the Spring Menu!

and in nearby Trenton:

Delorenzo's Tomato Pies, 530 Hudson St. Trenton, a legendary parlor (with no bathroom!) that produces remarkably light, thin pies that set the standard. (see Pizza Club topic in Pennsylvania forum for details and pics).

Rich Pawlak

 

Reporter, The Trentonian

Feature Writer, INSIDE Magazine
Food Writer At Large

MY BLOG: THE OMNIVORE

"In Cerveza et Pizza Veritas"

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"The Haven" to everyone except Westminster Choir College students who inexplicably call it "Hoagies".

That makes m laugh...I never knew they called it "Hoagies"...

I would agree with both of them, with a few additions.

Triumph for beer and burgers.

Definately "Haven" (I lived in that place when I was in HS and find myself wearing their t-shirt today as I sit and type this). The experience is sort of like "the soup Nazi" of greasy late-night hoagies. George now owns both "Haven" and "George's". My younger brother is friends with George's son and loves them both equally.

Definitely Conte's....go for the special, but be prepared to wait for over an hour if you want pizza on a weekend night.

PJ's is the plcae to go for Sunday late morning breakfast, but again...be prepared to wait

Another long-standing Bugrer and Beer place is Tiger's Tale, which is north on 206 at the intersection with 518. It's been years since I've been there, and it was never anything spectacular....but it was good burgers and beer

And of course you can't miss Thomas Sweets......really great ice cream place. Go for the "Blend-in's"...my favorite is cinnamon ice cream with M&M's...

And f you want god diner....the Princtonian Diner on Rt 1, or (if you feel like a little bit of a drive) Mastori's....can't really remember where it is, but I'm sure it's in the book.

Nothing says I love you like a homemade salami

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LAHIERES RESTAURANT 

5 WITHERSPOON ST, PRINCETON, NJ 08542 

Phone: (609) 921-2798 

Pronounced La e air's

Personally, I would not recomend this place. But I suppose that's the beauty of it being America....

The Burg, however, I would give a thumbs up...it's my family's "ancestral home" and it has great food. If it's still around, there's a great Italian place by the Trenton Train Station...anybody remember the name of it? Expensive but excellent....

Nothing says I love you like a homemade salami

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Here's a link that will give you an overview.

http://forums.egullet.org/index.php?showto...=0entry161592

David, it's Lorenzo's near the train station, and its filled with smoke, but wonderful steaks.

I disagree with Truimph..not a fan of most of their beers, and unimpressed with the food.

I'd second Tiger's Tale, Conte's ,and add Asajehi for sushi..two locations, one by Bank street, another by Kalluri Corner near...Murray Street? Hoagie Haven end of town.

I enjoy Main Street Bistro in the Princeton Shopping Center. I think Olives is ridiculously overpriced. I've had nice appetizers at Mediterra, but hit or miss on entrees. I like Tiger noodles, more upscale chinese at Sunny Garden on Route One behind the Marketfair mall.

Carousel for hangovers.

Blue Point Oyster Grille has been consistantly above average, next to Nassau Street seafood..but horrific waiting times,so we rarely go.

Fine dining..I'd go to Rat's in Hamilton, about 20 minutes away. or head to Lambertville, about 15 miles away.

And, here's another link for a newer discovery of mine, the Griggstown Quail Farm ( suppliers to D'artagnan)

http://forums.egullet.org/index.php?showto...=0entry530148

Edited by Kim WB (log)
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Here's a link that will give you an overview.

http://forums.egullet.org/index.php?showto...=0entry161592

David, it's Lorenzo's near the train station, and its filled with smoke, but wonderful steaks.

I disagree with Truimph..not a fan of most of their beers, and unimpressed with the food.

I'd second Tiger's Tale, Conte's ,and add Asajehi for sushi..two locations, one by Bank street, another by Kalluri Corner near...Murray Street? Hoagie Haven end of town.

I enjoy Main Street Bistro in the Princeton Shopping Center. I think Olives is ridiculously overpriced. I've had nice appetizers at Mediterra, but hit or miss on entrees. I like Tiger noodles, more upscale chinese at Sunny Garden on Route One behind the Marketfair mall.

Carousel for hangovers.

Blue Point Oyster Grille has been consistantly above average, next to Nassau Street seafood..but horrific waiting times,so we rarely go.

Fine dining..I'd go to Rat's in Hamilton, about 20 minutes away. or head to Lambertville, about 15 miles away.

Is the Boathouse in the Porkyard in Lambertville still there?

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yes, it is..I was there last Friday...had a chocolate martini, which I had heard about and never tried. Not my cup of tea, but the Boathouse is as funky and fun as always...went to Hamilton Grill the week before, there is a thread somewhere that describes it.

edited to add: here it is: http://forums.egullet.org/index.php?showtopic=23487

Edited by Kim WB (log)
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yes, it is..I was there last Friday...had a chocolate martini, which I had heard about and never tried. Not my cup of tea, but the Boathouse is as funky and fun as always...went to Hamilton Grill the week before, there is a thread somewhere that describes it.

edited to add: here it is: http://forums.egullet.org/index.php?showtopic=23487

Hillvalley:

That's where you should head, Lambertville. Many restaurants in NJ are BYOB and I think Hamilton Grill is one of them. Drinks at the Boathouse before dinner. Your friends in Princeton will wonder how you happened on to these places.

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Fine dining..I'd go to Rat's in Hamilton, about 20 minutes away. or head to Lambertville, about 15 miles away.

:smile: I am going to visit squashblossom who runs the farm connected with Rats.

These suggestions are great. It being spring she hasn't had time to really check out the food scene.

What about food shops? I know Wegmans in near by, but I would love to know about the little gourmet shops that are around.

Thanks for all of your help :smile:

True Heroism is remarkably sober, very undramatic.

It is not the urge to surpass all others at whatever cost,

but the urge to serve others at whatever cost. -Arthur Ashe

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HillVally, where are you coming from? I could direct you to some great little Korean or Indian markets..but if you're coming from NYC, for example, I'm not sure you would need those references.

Trenton Farmer's Market, Griggstown Quail Farm...both in above links, are prob the most unique to the area. PA Dutch market as well, although again those are popping up all around, you might have one in the area you are coming from.

There is a "gourmet" shop in the Princeton Shopping Center, "Bon Appetit"...nothing amazingly special... I prefer Wegman's for fresheness of cheese.

there is also Suzi's Hot Sauce in New Hope..that's unique...little hole in the wall place that sells nothing bu heat related hot pepper products.

Edited by Kim WB (log)
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My sister lives in Princeton so I get there fairly often. May I just add one thing to the excellent lists above?

Wegmans!

Not a restaurant in the strict sense of the word, and not downtown, but it's my favorite place to eat with the family. There's a very hospitable upstairs dining area, where you can feast on Wegmans various prepared foods. Lots of choice, very high quality, and afterwards you can do your grocery shopping.

Steven A. Shaw aka "Fat Guy"
Co-founder, Society for Culinary Arts & Letters, sshaw@egstaff.org
Proud signatory to the eG Ethics code
Director, New Media Studies, International Culinary Center (take my food-blogging course)

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I second Wegman's for the shopping.

For a drink and a snack, check out Alchemist & Barrister on Witherspoon Street. There is a pub room in the back (reached by the alley on the side). They have a very good nacho plate with chicken, black beans, and andouille sausage.

For seafood try Big Fish in the Marketfair mall on Rte. 1.

Kitchen Kutie

"I've had jutht about enough outta you!"--Daffy Duck

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LAHIERES RESTAURANT 

5 WITHERSPOON ST, PRINCETON, NJ 08542 

Phone: (609) 921-2798 

Pronounced La e air's

Personally, I would not recomend this place. But I suppose that's the beauty of it being America....

The Burg, however, I would give a thumbs up...it's my family's "ancestral home" and it has great food. If it's still around, there's a great Italian place by the Trenton Train Station...anybody remember the name of it? Expensive but excellent....

right across from the train staiton is lorenzo's ...steak place....excellent in the 60-70 ealry 80's....now very overpriced for what you get and they last 3 times there very disapointing...but a very attrractive bar with good cocktails..when i was a child they had water running under the bar ...it may have call a trough (sp)

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right across from the train staiton is lorenzo's ...steak place....excellent in the 60-70 ealry 80's....now very overpriced for what you get and they last 3 times there very disapointing...but a very attrractive bar with good cocktails..when i was a child they had water running under the bar ...it may have call a trough (sp)

Yeah...I probably haven't been there since about 1991, so I guess my info isn't all that up to date, but it used to be good....

I had forgotten about the A&B....good suggestion, Shermar.....

Nothing says I love you like a homemade salami

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right across from the train staiton is lorenzo's ...steak place....excellent in the 60-70 ealry 80's....now very overpriced for what you get and they last 3 times there very disapointing...but a very attrractive bar with good cocktails..when i was a child they had water running under the bar ...it may have call a trough (sp)

hmmmm. I agree on the cocktails...perfection. I don't agree, or at least have not personally noticed, a downhill slide at Lorenzo's...and their prices are in line with any authentic ( read: aged meats, not a chain) steak house...same limited menu, not the place to order salad and fish, that' for sure. It's very smoky, that's my complaint.

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HillVally, where are you coming from? I could direct you to some great little Korean or Indian markets..but if you're coming from NYC, for example, I'm not sure you would need those references.

IIRC, she's in the DC area.

Herb aka "herbacidal"

Tom is not my friend.

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Yep, I'm coming from DC. I would love to find a good Korean market. Around here they are all out in the burbs so I don't get to one as often as I like.

Thanks for all of the suggestions, these are great.

What about pizza? Anything close to what I could get up in NY? DC pizza is just pathetic.

True Heroism is remarkably sober, very undramatic.

It is not the urge to surpass all others at whatever cost,

but the urge to serve others at whatever cost. -Arthur Ashe

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Blue Point Grill is a favorite for well prepared fish and seafood (plus a huge selection).

As mentioned earlier, be careful when you go as the wait times can be nasty.

Tom

PS You will also love Conte's pizza and the atmosphere is a bonus

Tom

Tom D

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What about pizza?

Check out Conte's Pizza on Witherspoon Street....pies only, no slices...eat in or take out. My personal favorite is the "Special". On the weekends be prepared to wait a while.

Also, the pizza place on Nassau street in downtown Princeton (is it Victor's?) Good straight ahead NJ sllice.

The brilliant comedian Gene Shepard alway used to say that you could tell the quality of a slice of New Jersey pizza by how far down your arm the grease dripped off. A really great slice made it all the way to your elbow.....

-David

Nothing says I love you like a homemade salami

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