NJ Foodie destination - Rumson??

So we decided to head over to Val’s for a lobster pie. No surprises here as their lobster pie has basically stayed the same forever. It was an early dinner so we took a walk up the block afterwards. Well, one block over we came upon Surf BBQ. It smelled so good that we decided to get some take out. We got a half pound of pulled pork, one order of hot wings, and ONE beef rib and it cost us $45!! OK, so the beef rib was very tasty

What?? I’m supposed to take the pic BEFORE I eat it?? Ooops.

But hey that is some expensive BBQ. And I’m sorry but the smoked and grilled wings didn’t do it for me. And for what they charge for three whole ones (six pieces if you break em down) I could’ve had a large order at Jacks. But I digress…

So after surf, we kept walking down the street, bummed to find Cup & Cakes closed, but one block later we happened upon The French Market. Everything looked wonderful from the breads to the tarts and we loaded up on baked goods.

Man did the car smell good on our way home! So I guess my point here is that, if you are flush with cash and hungry, you could do worse than to drive your Bentley over to Rumson for some chow.

Awesome. I can tell Mrs. Z that we’re not the only family that does that.

Val’s and Surf in the same meal is spot on (though costly). Like Reese’s - two great tastes that taste great together. Our approach has been a well-timed, double takeout though. A back-to-back crawl is now an imperative.

That pastrami beef rib really is something, huh?

Extensive posts on that other stupid site will not be repeated here, but Surf BBQ is actually some of the most expensive in the US.

It is actually cheaper to order the real deal from Lockhart or KC and have it shipped.

At those prices it remains a rare treat rather than something I would do often

Also position has been discussed. In Rumson they would prolly be busier if they had white table cloths and a sommolier as opposed to the communal seating.

In our area I like Jersey Shore BBQ in Belmar if I am not smoking myself. Best Market in Holmdel also has excellent smoked brisket to go.

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Next time in Rumson you should also give Brennans deli a try. Just awesome sammies all around $ 8. I really like the chicken cutlets bacon and tomato, but they are all good.

While I have no argument concerning the prices at Surf, I’ve eaten at enough of the country’s “famous” spots to object to the idea that they’re much more “real deal” than Surf or what I’ve been doing on the offset for the better part of 20 years. There hasn’t been any magic to barbecue since the invention and spread of propane and electric smokers. Joints around here have one recurring problem - reheating practices. Surf’s decision to limit hours and be willing to run out of meat by closing time was the right way to address it.

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Except you and Mrs. Z are in the Bugatti, hahaha Bently!!

My 2003 GMC begs to differ. Who spends money on cars when there’s food to buy and joints to discover?


No argument from me I’m a KCBS certified judge, there is a big difference between what a lot of places hand in at the competition and what they serve you reheated in their restaurant.

I have been know to drive 50 miles out of my way to try a new joint. There is, however, no place around here that I would drive that distance for, especially including Surf at that price point.

If you would like a more reasonably priced well cooked brisket I can highly recommend the little BBQ place in the front of the Best Market in Holmdel.

Btw MZ, if you are into barbecue the clod at Kreuz in Lockhart is to die for, and worth a trip before you die.

I’m also a big fan of the lamb ribs at Jack Stack in KC.

No argument that the Q put out by Surf is the real deal. That rib was awesome. ( No comment about my excellent photo?) I do however have a problem with paying so much more than the closer and about as good ( and some things better ) Local Smoke in Red Bank. And I have yet to find anything locally that is as addictive as their poppers.

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Exactly my feelings, personally I found nothing at Surf to be superior to Local Smoke. I can’t see how anyone would drive past Local to go to Surf and if you live between the two why you would just decide to pay more. The locals who can care less about sticker price I can’t see sitting at picnic tables and self serving. I do not see a long or bright future for it.

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LS is just over the bridge, and I still drive to Holmdel. You gotta check out that brisket at Best Market.

Well, we’re a bit afield from the rarified air of Rumson (+1 for Brennan’s sandwiches, by the way) but the mentions of Best Market in Holmdel bring the following to mind —

For a BBQ lunch, I always enjoy dining at Tre Colore in Middletown at the NE corner of Rt 35 and New Monmouth Rd in that little plaza up behind Craig’s service station. It’s right next to Jersey Mike’s. They have Italian and Mexican items on the overall menu as well, but the barbecue seems to be handled by an entity known as “A&L BBQ”.

Many people come in for takeout as well as eating there. They seem to do quite a good business (at least at lunchtime) from tradesmen and workers in nearby offices which I’ve generally found to be a favorable indicator as well. Not to mention again that I like it. LOL

Meanwhile I’ll definitely have to give Best Market’s BBQ offerings a try. Is it takeout only or do they have tables as well ? I’ve been there a few times and I think I can picture where the hot barbecue stand would be [up front to the left in that sort of ‘alcove’ as you enter the main store itself ?]. I did manage to find their menu on the Best Market website —

— and it looks promising for a visit in the next few days :slight_smile:

I will, eventually. But just for that beef rib. If LS or others start making them, then I might not.

Best Market have a few tables, located right in front to the left where the old coffee shop used to be. But it is more of a place to grab a picnic and go, unless you are really hungry.

I talked to the Pitmaster, they are using red oak, salt and pepper in a controlled unit, and then they carefully keep it warm and do not reheat.

Compared to the other briskets I have had in the area, with perhaps the exception of JS BBQ if you can get it fresh, it is the best. Also really good to take home and make your own sammies with.

Last time I tried tre colore the bbq came back on me in a big way (reflux), which usually indicates older product that has been reheated, or in some cases, where they let the smoker get too warm. They seem to have a lot going on in there between BBQ, Mexican, ETC. I did notice the two people speaking Spanish in there were eating Italian, so that may be an additional sign.

Thanks, I vaguely remember the “coffee shop” area and that is where I thought the BBQ would be located too. No more convincing required, I’m going to go there at lunchtime once the workweek resumes after Labor Day Monday.

Hmmmmm, haven’t had any digestive disappointments with Tre Colore BBQ so far but I’m not prone to that sort of thing [heck, I can eat my cooking without problems :grinning:] so I’m likely not as discerning of food preparation shortfalls such as you mention. But I agree, they do seem to be trying to cover an awful lot of culinary territory with the Mexican/Italian/Barbecue fare.

Well there was not a lot left to comment on…