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Ginger and Spice in Ramsey (Photos!)


fatcatbrew
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  • 1 month later...

Finally made the trip up Rt 17 last night, and our group of 7 enjoyed a CRAZY amount of food--a nine-course tasting menu!! Thanks to one of our crew working diligently with Vincent, we had the following:

Tomato Egg Blossom Soup with cherry tomatoes and EVOO

Spicy Tuna and Salmon Sashimi Salad with diakon, cucumbers, red radish, mixed lettuce and ponzu sauce

Crispy Pansticker with Taiwanese Black Vinegar and Red Wine Gastrique

Steamed Shrimp and Pork Wonton with Spring Rhubarb and Veal Reduction

Thai Curry Udon Noodles with Angry Calamari with Red Thai Curry, Coconut Milk, and Thai Basil

Soy Honey Glazed Black and Blue Tuna with stir-fry of Asian vegetables, Wakame Salad, Crispy Bonito Rice, and Marinated Diakon

Pan Roasted Beef Triangle Steak with Roasted Garlic, Shaved Sweet Onion Salad, Black Pepper Coriander Gastrique

Chilled Coconut Lemongrass Soup with Pineapple Salsa, Strawberries, Basil Oil, and Nata de Coco

Banana Tart with Valrhona Chocolate Pastry Cream, Caramelized Banana, Malted Milk Shake, and Chocolate Ice Cream

I did say it was a crazy amount of food, right?!? :wacko: Needless to say, I'm having the triangle steak for dinner tonight!

If I was forced to pick my 3 favorites, they would likely be the Angry Calamari (what they do to p*ss it off is beyond me...), the Black and Blue Tuna, and for sheer unusual flavors, the Coconut Lemongrass Soup. But it's tough to pick favorites, because we had SO many different things to sample! There is no question that this is a kitchen that is putting out some unusual, interesting and very tasty food. At various times throughout the evening, we commented on Thai, Vietnamese and other Asian flavors that were coming through the different dishes.

MAJOR thanks to Vincent, Chef Doron and our server, Patrick!! We kept them all busy for the evening, and they kept us happy! :biggrin:

Hopefully someone will get a few pics up for us...

Edit: How could I not mention how beautiful the space is?!? Really unusual, more especially considering it's in a bland NJ strip mall!

Edited by Curlz (log)

"I'm not eating it...my tongue is just looking at it!" --My then-3.5 year-old niece, who was NOT eating a piece of gum

"Wow--this is a fancy restaurant! They keep bringing us more water and we didn't even ask for it!" --My 5.75 year-old niece, about Bread Bar

"He's jumped the flounder, as you might say."

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ok that was the food now the staff and of course US

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The great thing about barbeque is that when you get hungry 3 hours later....you can lick your fingers

Maxine

Avoid cutting yourself while slicing vegetables by getting someone else to hold them while you chop away.

"It is the government's fault, they've eaten everything."

My Webpage

garden state motorcyle association

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More Ginger and Spice pics, items from the Spring menu:

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Chilled Pea Soup

Truffle Oil, Vegetable Stock

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Tomato Ginger Egg Blossom Soup

Silken Egg, Extra Virgin Olive Oil

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Teriyaki Salmon Tartar

Crispy Lotus Chips, Pickled Vegetables, Sushi Rice

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Vermicelli Noodles

Prawns, String Beans, Bean Sprouts, Garlic Chives, and Lemon Oyster Sauce

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Slow Roasted Beef Rib Eye

Asian Pico de Gallo, Chimichurri, Aromatic Jasmine Rice (not pictured)

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Asian Pico de Gallo

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Steamed Whole Skatewing

Thai Red Curry Crust, Stir Fried Red Peppers, Peanuts, Coconut, Red Curry Coconut Sauce

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Pan Roasted Beef Triangle Steak

Roasted Garlic, Shaved Sweet Onion Salad, Black Pepper Coriander Gastrique

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Aromatic Braised Short Ribs

Green Pea Shoots, Truffle Oil, Radish Salad, Asian Succotash

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Crispy 5-Spice Chicken Skewers Salad

Cucumbers, Bermuda Onions, Crushed Peantus, Hoisin Mustard Dressing

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Chilled Coconut Lemongrass Soup

Pineapples, Strawberries, Basil Oil, Nata de Coco

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Banana Tart

Chocolate Pastry Cream, Caramelized Bananas, Malted Milk Shake, Chocolate Ice Cream

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Ginger and Spice Creme Brulee

Creamy Flan infused with Ginger, Cloves, Star Anise, Allspice, Fennel

Edit: Captions added by Rachel

Edited by Jason Perlow (log)

Jason Perlow

Co-Founder, The Society for Culinary Arts & Letters

offthebroiler.com - Food Blog | View my food photos on Instagram

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I've added captions (mostly directly from the menu) to Jason's pictures, above.

Most of the new dishes are wonderful. I particularly enjoyed the Slow Roasted Rib Eye, it was amazingly tender, but with a great crust on the edges. I think it was prepared more like a slice of prime rib than a steak. Both the chimmichurri and the tomato salad were terrific accompaniments. I didn't care as much for the Aromatic Shortrib. The meat itself was delicious and tender, but the white truffle oil aroma was distracting and I didn't care for the diced taro which is part of the succatash.

The skate was cooked perfectly, but be warned, it is quite spicy. I've found that I've enjoyed all the fish preparations at Ginger and Spice. The new salmon tartar was a great starter, but I wanted more lotus chips! :raz:

While the new desserts are good, my favorite is still the Lemongrass soup. It is a must order!

At the end of our meal, we chatted briefly with Chef Doron Wong. While they are fully booked on the weekends, they are much slower on weekdays. They are planning on working with a PR firm to help get the word out and fill up those weeknight seats (i.e. go there soon, before it gets too hard to get a table). I thanked him for one thing in particular -- that his food is not boring! I guess I'm starting to get a little jaded, sometimes it seems like I've had everything, been there, done that. That's not the case at Ginger & Spice. Not everything is 100% to my taste, but so what? Most of it is great, and there's new and exciting flavors around every corner.

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It's nice to have so many good restaurants opening up in Ramsey.

Ginger and Spice is a nice addition to the town and it seems that they are trying.

A few suggestions - first - it was reallly toooo loud, may be there should be a limit on TV volumes??? With music combined it's too much, and it doesn't seem to have any sound proofing. I tryed the tuna and salmon sashimi salad everyone is talking about, I though that the fish was a bit too think, too much. I couln'd enjoy it as much as I've had sashimi dishes in the city with soba noodles, more cucmber and seaweed salad. I tried both the dumplings (which needed to be pan fried, not deep, and the dish for dipping soy souce was too small for it, the dumpling wouldn't fit into it) and the spring rolls, the fried one again - the dough is much too think. The non fried one was much better. The noodles I had for entree were too salty.

The booths are comfortable and seem to have IKEA written all over them, the other side seems uninspiring, may be some pictures on the wall???

I liked their tea selection a lot. Unfortunately I was too full for desert.

Overall I think it's a nice additon to the town, they seem to be trying, it's just too loud and the food needs to get better.

Best wishes,

Best of the Best

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Overall I think it's a nice additon to the town, they seem to be trying, it's just too loud and the food needs to get better.

Best wishes,

Best of the Best

probably not as good as varka, right? :laugh:

as far as the sashimi salad, to me it doesn't make much sense to me to compare it to a version with soba noodles and seaweed salad, two items that aren't int this dish. my take on G&S's version is that it's very light and refreshing, with its hints of citrus, and quite good indeed. unless they've changed it since the last time i had it.

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Have to agree with you, Tommy; we had this dish last week, and I didn't find the pieces of sashimi to be too big. There were generous portions (3 good-sized pieces each of tuna and salmon), and every piece of fish I had that night was just gorgeous! And yes, the sauce/dressing on the dish was light and refreshing--but also SPICY! In a very good way. Very good indeed... :cool:

"I'm not eating it...my tongue is just looking at it!" --My then-3.5 year-old niece, who was NOT eating a piece of gum

"Wow--this is a fancy restaurant! They keep bringing us more water and we didn't even ask for it!" --My 5.75 year-old niece, about Bread Bar

"He's jumped the flounder, as you might say."

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  • 2 weeks later...

The two aren't really comparable. I love Varka for it's healthy simplicity and elegance.

I'm sorry if I wasn't clearer but what I meant about the sashimi dish was that for my taste the fish had to be sliced thinner for a light salad dish.

Best

Edited by Best of the best (log)
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  • 3 weeks later...

Apparently both Doron and James have joined The Harvest Group.

Doron is now Executive Chef at East by Northeast restaurant (also known as "ENE") in Montauk, NY. That's out by the Hamptons.

Jason Perlow

Co-Founder, The Society for Culinary Arts & Letters

offthebroiler.com - Food Blog | View my food photos on Instagram

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Currently, the restaurant is being staffed by its Sous Chef and its line staff, who have all stayed. The menu is going to remain the same for the time being and the restaurant is stable.

The owner, Vincent Chin, is looking to hire a new executive chef who has experience in Asian fusion cuisine and is also looking to open up a second location.

Jason Perlow

Co-Founder, The Society for Culinary Arts & Letters

offthebroiler.com - Food Blog | View my food photos on Instagram

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  • 2 months later...

Congratulations on the four star review from the Bergen Record.

Ginger and Spice

The flat panel televisions are an interesting twist for an Asian fusion restaurant. I must get there and try it.

"To invite a person to your house is to take charge of his (her) happiness for as long as he is under your roof."

Brillat Savarin

You don't have to like everything I make, but you still have to eat it.

A Co-Worker from Work

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Congratulations on the four star review from the Bergen Record.

Ginger and Spice

The flat panel televisions are an interesting twist for an Asian fusion restaurant. I must get there and try it.

We went tonight as a group of three at 7:45. The waiter came over and told us because of the reviews, many menu items were 86st. Most of the items that we wanted to try were gone.

Originally, I ordered the short ribs to be told that they were not done being cooked for the restaurant. OK. Then I ordered the miso salmon and another person in my party ordered the tuna. Five minutes later, oh we ran out of those. :hmmm: So we opted for the duck (one order left) and a noodle dish. When dessert came around, the only items left were the lemongrass soup and the ginger and spice creme brulee, :rolleyes: both good.

When it comes to ordering food, they need to be better prepared. One person in my party of three went there this past Friday, and told us that the same problem happend: items running out fast. They need to order heavier because of the review.

The food was good, but not as great as the reviewer claimed it to be. Service was good too, but choppy. Decor would be the best part of the experience, reminding me of Morimoto restaurant in Philadelphia. I was dissapointed overall. Sorry!

I will give Ginger and Spice another try in the future.

"To invite a person to your house is to take charge of his (her) happiness for as long as he is under your roof."

Brillat Savarin

You don't have to like everything I make, but you still have to eat it.

A Co-Worker from Work

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We've just been informed that Executive Chef Doron Wong and Pastry Chef James DiStefano are no longer with the restaurant.

We'll let you know more about this as it develops.

Is it at all possible that the review was submitted before these two left?!?

"I'm not eating it...my tongue is just looking at it!" --My then-3.5 year-old niece, who was NOT eating a piece of gum

"Wow--this is a fancy restaurant! They keep bringing us more water and we didn't even ask for it!" --My 5.75 year-old niece, about Bread Bar

"He's jumped the flounder, as you might say."

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Its certainly possible, but that would be a very long lead time, even for the Record.

More than likely the sous chef and the line staff is doing a good job maintaining the dishes that Chefs Wong and Distefano created. As to whether the restaurant can continue to be creative is a different story.

Jason Perlow

Co-Founder, The Society for Culinary Arts & Letters

offthebroiler.com - Food Blog | View my food photos on Instagram

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My husband and I dined at Ginger and Spice last evening. The food and service were quite good. The place was packed on a Monday night.

You could tell they were recovering from a CRAZY weekend. Apparently, They were notified on Thursday evening that their review would be in the following day's newspaper; however, they were not advised at that time of the review rating they had received.

Based on my conversation with the owner, Vincent, the review was based on dining experiences after the Executive Chef, Doron Wong, left Ginger & Spice.

I get the impression that they were totally overwhelmed by the reaction to the great review they received - they had lines out the door - no reaction time to order food or prepare staff for the enormous amount of diners that arrived based on the review.

Going forward, I am confident that they will be able to continue to be creative and handle their popularity.

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That's great to hear--it's just a shame that the first impression that many got may not have been a good one. I hope Vincent was as up-front in explaining their issues this past weekend to new customers!

"I'm not eating it...my tongue is just looking at it!" --My then-3.5 year-old niece, who was NOT eating a piece of gum

"Wow--this is a fancy restaurant! They keep bringing us more water and we didn't even ask for it!" --My 5.75 year-old niece, about Bread Bar

"He's jumped the flounder, as you might say."

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Hubby was trying to be real nice this weekend ...we almost went here Saturday night...he didnt like it the first time.... but I really miss the coconut lemongrass dessert

hmmm maybe I can spring for a lunch before I have to go back to work

tracey

The great thing about barbeque is that when you get hungry 3 hours later....you can lick your fingers

Maxine

Avoid cutting yourself while slicing vegetables by getting someone else to hold them while you chop away.

"It is the government's fault, they've eaten everything."

My Webpage

garden state motorcyle association

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Hubby was trying to be real nice this weekend ...we almost went here Saturday night...he didnt like it the first time.... but I really miss the coconut lemongrass dessert

hmmm maybe I can spring for a lunch before I have to go back to work

tracey

Lunch is a steal there. I think they are also having a takeout special ....25% off.

I eat lunch there from time to time. A nice break from the ordinary and not a whole lot more than $$$ Micky D's!

I will say that the quality has suffered, although only slightly, since their Exec Chef left. I think the food at Ginger & Spice is still very good and very original and they do change the menu frequently.

G&S walks a line between being "reasonably priced and family friendly" and "original, fresh and high end". That's a tough act.... and when your business is tripled overnight you can see how easy it is to fall off the high wire.

I think people overlook the interesting teas they have as well.

Regarding Tommy's minor issue with the TV's.....I suppose you could always have it turned off. (No shot at Tommy intended but in case someone that had never been there was wondering....)

I kind of liked it when they had the silent scene of the grass waving in the wind.

They no longer do that apparently as they kept burning out DVD players!

Edited by Hikeleader (log)
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  • 1 month later...

My wife and I have been to G & S three times starting about a month ago and I have to tell you this place is a dissapointment. I am a chef/ owner of a restaurant and I know how a place should operate. Every time I have been there the sevice has been real bad even though the place isnt full. Not that we waited long for our food, but the servers have no idea what is going on! They have no knowledge of the menu and and they dont know if they have bottled water, iced tea, etc. For example two of the times we were there my wife and I both ordered the roasted chicken as an entree. The first time the waiter came back after 5 mins and told us that the chef said that the chicken delivery didnt show up. The second time which was 2 weeks later a different waiter came back 2 mins later and said they were out, so we ordered 2 different items( skirt steak and salmon) and the manager came to us and said sorry we were mistaken, we have chicken would you like to have it? We said Yes! But wait, two mins after that the waiter came up to us again and said " the chef just told me we have the chicken but it isnt pre roasted yet, it is raw, so it will take too long to make it." At this point my wife was pissed but i just had to laugh. What a joke man! I mean in my opinion the food at best is O.K. The service and management are horrible! The only good thing about the place is their coconut-lemongrass soup. Thats the only reason to go there.

Edited by jasper (log)
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