Friday, November 6, 2009

Three New Restaurants to Challenge Your Appetite

By Millicent K. Brody

Supper at Ana Beall’s Tea Room in Westfield

Nancy Baker, proprietor of Ana Beall’s Tea Room in Westfield, recently announced that on Friday, the 13th of November, the Tea Room will be open for supper. Be one of the first lucky guests to come and enjoy appetizers of Louisiana crab cakes with sweet corn relish and red pepper remoulade, chicken and Andouille sausage gumbo on a bed of aromatic Carolina white rice, and hush puppies with a spicy-sweet orange dipping sauce. Entree specialties include chili-lime spice-rubbed hanger steak with fresh melon salsa, pan-fried catfish with red pepper remoulade, crab and asparagus shortcakes with tasso gravy, and a vegetarian trio. For dessert, try the banana bread pudding with chai chocolate sauce.

The tea room is open for breakfast, lunch, tea, weekend brunch, and now for supper. Hours: 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Tuesday to Thurs., 10 a.m. to 10 p.m. Friday & Saturday, 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. Sunday. Available for showers and special occasions. Ana Beall’s Tea Room, 415 Westfield Ave., Westfield. Call for reservations: 908.264.4221.

Drewby’s Raritan is Where You Want to Be
Drewby's Grill Pub, located at 16 S. Main Street in Manville, celebrated its 5th Anniversary in early October. Folks stop by for steaks, seafood, thin-crust pizza, fresh pasta, and their fabulous raw bar.

Happily, Drewby's owner Bill MacKenzie opened his second eatery, Drewby’s Raritan, on November 4. The menu boasts tapas, grilled steaks, seafood, and his special fresh pasta.

For starters, come by and check out the tapas menu, which includes duck confit and white beans, buffalo turkey wings, and grilled chorizo. Entrees include beef short ribs, New York strip steak, hangar steak, and seafood. Desserts are prepared by house pastry chef Jackie B. Just for the record, Bill loves her apple crumb cheese cake.

Priding himself on dealing with local purveyors, MacKenzie’s produce arrives from local farms.

BYOB and come on down. Drewby’s Raritan is located at 18 West Somerset St., Raritan. Hours: 5:30 p.m. to closing Tuesday to Saturday. Sunday brunch starts November 16th at 10 a.m. Casual dress. Party room available for 25 to 30 people. Call for reservations: 908.725.2500.

Mangia Ristorante Opens in Somerville
Imagine my surprise when I drove by N. Gaston Ave., in Somerville and noticed a new sign at the former location of La Scala. It's now owned and operated by Paul Pankuch; manning the kitchen is Chef Raul, who trained under Chef Omar Aly.

Heading the menu is a 20 oz rib eye topped with exotic mushrooms, finished with Dijon brandy cream sauce and black truffle essence. Resembling veal shanks, turkey osso buco is prepared with all of your favorite ingredients. Salmon lovers will appreciate a filet of wild salmon served with fresh leaks, tomato, basil, and capers in white wine.

“All of our dishes are prepared fresh daily,” says Pankuch who served as head waiter and general manager of La Scala for many years. “Folks look forward to dessert. Along with our pastry, we make our own gelato and sorbet.”

With two distinct dining rooms, come casual and enjoy dinner with the kids on the first floor, or head upstairs for a more formal meal. Hours: 4:30 to 10 p.m. Tuesday to Thursday. 4:30 to 11 p.m. Friday and Saturday. 1 p.m. to 9 p.m. Sunday. Call for reservations and information. 908.218.9300. Mangia Ristorante, 117 N. Gaston Ave. Somerville.

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