Believe it or not, there is more to South Jersey than Pine Barrens and great shorelines. New Jersey is rife with some seriously good eats, and the south is no exception. Whether you are in Burlington or Cape May, there is a delightful hidden gem waiting to be discovered. To start you on your epicurean journey, here are 9 of the best restaurants in South Jersey.
Rosie’s Restaurant, Ocean Gate
Rosie’s is another one of those hidden gems that you want to keep coming back to. Located in Ocean Gate, their menu is an eclectic mix of Jersey favorites and steakhouse staples. The interior space is crafted in a such a way that always makes the ambiance feel like a beach day. All these positives are multiplied by a stellar waiter service that is friendly and attentive. Additional services include full bar and rooftop access, with seasonal options. Their Rosie’s Fried Calamari and 14oz Prime Ribeye are delicious, be sure to try those.
618 is a hidden gem for those who are looking for a restaurant that provides upscale fusion dishes with seasonal availability. Located in Freehold, this restaurant has been rated among the top 1% on TripAdvisor, and one of the most romantic restaurants in America for the past two years. While it is still available, try their crispy broken truffle spuds and cabernet braised short rib. They both are excellent dishes worth trying. With its exciting atmosphere and great eats, 618 is easily one of the best restaurants South New Jersey has to offer.
Chef Vola’s, Atlantic City
This restaurant is notoriously difficult to reserve tables for, and for good reason. It is one of the best Italian restaurants in Atlantic City, delivering Jersey favorites on family style plates. A personal favorite here is their chicken parmesan topped with Chef Vola’s signature blush sauce, along with their Butterscotch Cheesecake for dessert. Be sure to reserve far in advance. This is one of the best restaurants in South Jersey, and the waiting line makes it known.
Rated by Zagat as South Jersey’s most stylish non-casino restaurant, Sofia is a Greek restaurant with lots of character. Stepping through their elaborate wood doors feels like transporting yourself to a small corner of the old world. It is an elegant place, with views of Margate Bay and spectacular sunsets. Their food is a mix of seafood and land-based meats, which is complemented by regionally sourced produce. If you stop by, try their Blazing Atlantic Salmon or Baked Moussaka, they are delightful.
Franklinville Inn, Franklinville
The Franklinville Inn is a more traditional establishment that cooks a wide variety of American fare. Located inside an old stagecoach house, the interior has a warm, casual, and antique-like aura. The food of course is fantastic, and it is primarily meat centric. Some of their standout dishes include their crab bisque and prime rib options. If you’re looking for something a little more laidback with great comfort food, this is one is a treasure.
Gables, Beach Haven
Gables is one of those restaurants that is small in stature but still makes its presence known. It is one of top restaurants on Long Beach Island, and is lauded by many institutions for its culinary excellence and romantic atmosphere. This restaurant is a fantastic choice for honeymoons, anniversaries, and hot dates. Services also include overnight stays, with a total of five guest rooms to choose from. When reserving a table however, it should be noted that any of the food here incurs a flat fee. All the options are delicious, but some personal favorites are their Butternut Squash Soup, Skuna Bay Atlantic Salmon, and Signature Sixteen Ounce Bone in Filet Mignon.
Washington Inn, Cape May
Located on a former plantation, the Washington Inn prides itself on its New American cuisine. This dedication to their craft shines in their many flavorful and inspired dishes. Being so close to the shore, many of their seafood options are also locally sourced. Their historic interior provides a cozy and intimate ambiance that makes it great for dates. Like the others on this list, they also have an excellent wine and cocktail list. For starters, try their Lamb Cavatelli or Seafood Cioppino.
The ChopHouse, Gibbsboro
If you enjoy good views and great food, then the ChopHouse is the locale for you. Located along the coast of Silver Lake, this upscale and modern restaurant provides a variety of delicious steaks and seasonal dishes. The interior of the restaurant has a modern chic that compliments the pastel sunset over the water. When you stop by, be sure to try their NY strip and crème brulee. Don’t forget to keep an eye out for their seasonal offerings, they are exceptional.
Knife and Fork, Atlantic City
What was once a gentlemen-only club in the 1910s and later a speakeasy during prohibition, is now home to one of the best steakhouses in Atlantic City. The Knife and Fork Inn has been in the restaurant business since 1948 and has served the likes of Frank Sinatra and Bob Hope. In terms of food, its upscale menu reflects the culinary artistry of its kitchen staff. Their luxurious menu is complimented by additional services such as their oyster bar and extensive wine collection. If you stop by, be sure to try their rack of lamb or duck leg confit, you won’t be disappointed.