Brio Freehold Mall, Freehold NJ

I’ll just leave a brief description of my experience here since we all know chains are not really a celebrated thing on these boards. Was in the Freehold area Saturday night, rather casually dressed for me, and didn’t want to hit up Cuzzins Clam or the American Hotel, my first two choices for the greater Freehold area. Decided to go to Brio especially given their nice outdoor seating area overlooking the scenic Freehold Mall Parking lot. (quick shout out to those hard working mall security guard/cars, DO NOT spend more than 45 seconds in the fire lane or they will honk you out of the fire lane folks!! They aren’t playing around!!)

Anywho…arrived around 7:00 pm seated with no problem at an out door table. Bread and some butter arrived shortly there after. My wife ordered a strawberry mojito and a unsweetened iced tea for me. We were told the specials and we placed our order. (I had been here one time several years ago but had no recollection of what I ate or how impressed I was, my wife had eaten here more recently with some girlfriends) For me: Lobster bisque and the pan seared half chicken, my wife ordered the grilled salmon “fresca”. She also ordered two sides, one roasted brussel sprouts and “Sicilian cauliflower”.

The bisque was average, nothing special but both our entree’s were quite good and the sides were VERY good. All things considered the food was good, service was a little slow and I’m not sure what I could have possible said to confuse the waitress to think I wanted my soup and entree served together, but somehow she got that impression. She did offer us desert on her for the mix up but we kindly declined.

Overall if you are at the mall area and looking for a solid meal I can’t knock this place, if all chains were more like this perhaps they wouldn’t have such a negative reputation!

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Interesting that you mention its proximity to the parking lot because while I’m not necessarily against eating at mall restaurants, something about their particular spot puts me off from wanting to ever try it.

Was it better than the local smoke bird? Lol

Yeah while it’s nice to dine al fresco’, staring at a parking lot isn’t exactly the ideal scenery. I was thinking they should really do a planter with a row of trees and maybe a fountain or something and it would enhance that patio 1000%.

Let’s not get crazy here CJ, nothing beats the LS bird!!!

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For a chain, Brio is definitely solid. There is usually no wait to very short wait for table (unlike Cheesecake Factory). The food is always enjoyable even though the menu could become a bit boring over time.

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I was in Freehold this weekend and remembered your mention here of American Hotel. Overall it was a very good experience, but it’s a little out of my price range for anything but a special occasion, and I don’t have many of those.

I’m glad you enjoyed!! The American Hotel is my go-to steak place in the Freehold area, If I have business entertaining to do in that area American Hotel is going to be the selection. This is why on a weekend especially I didn’t feel comfortable going in shorts! Next special occasion or if someone offers to take you out, keep it on your radar!

My brother and I had the porterhouse for two while his wife opted for the halibut. He thought it was on par with Mortons, so I can see why it’s your go-to for steak. With the four side dishes, it looked insurmountable to finish it all but we did. We tried Freehold a couple of weeks ago, but it was pouring rain so we just made a mad dash into the Court Jester and then back to the car. They wanted to have another go with good weather. With every restaurant’s outdoor tables nearly full, we wondered how much a rainy Saturday night costs them.

At $110. for the porterhouse for two ($55pp) it’s a high price point, especially for Freehold NJ, however the 4 included side dishes make it a bit easier to accept. Most places a side dish will go for $8-$10, so including the 4 sides helps balance the price point. I’ve had several of the porterhouses and have never had a complaint, I can take or leave their home made steak sauce, also their cold seafood tower ($54 for 2 or $26 pp) is a fairly good value with the portion / amount they give you.

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