Sunday, July 15, 2012

Date Night

Last night, John and I went to Marco & Pepe, a neighborhood restaurant in Jersey City.  "We offer artisanal fare in a warm, welcoming place" is how they describe themselves on their website.  We have been there several times, it being the closest of several restaurants in the area John and I really like.  In most restaurants, John and I are pretty lame, we find one dish we like and order that every time.  Marco & Pepe is different.  Everything on the menu looks appetizing, and every dish we have tried has been a smash.  Most of their dishes come in a small plate size as well which is nice, because it prevents us from eating way too much, an easy thing to do at a place this good.
We started this meal with grilled corn with herbed butter and lime slices.  It was just the right balance of sweet, spicy, and tart flavors.  Both of us ate every kernel served.  In the background you can vaguely make out my beer, an IPA brewed locally in New Jersey by the Kane Brewing Company.  It was on tap.
John got a burger and fries with white cheddar.  The meat was delectable, and John had a hard time stopping himself from eating the whole plate of fries.
I ordered their pan roasted chicken and substituted broccoli rabe with garlic for the fries.  It was amazing.  The seasoning was perfect, the meat was tender and practically fell apart on the fork, and the broccoli rabe was just crunchy enough.  I only ate about a third of the chicken, it was such a large piece, and then I had some for lunch and some more with pasta for dinner today.  It was really a smash hit.  And I love the way the food is served, it just makes me feel like its that much closer to home cooked. 
We finished the meal with a mini pecan pie, which strangely enough was served with a strawberry drizzled in caramelized sugar.  The pecans were divine and the syrup even more so.  The crust was just good, not quite up to the heavenly standard the rest of the meal set.  Oh, and the ice coffee?  Amazing.

So if you live in the North Jersey, or New York metropolitan area, I really can't encourage you enough to visit Marco & Pepe.  And, apparently they serve brunch.

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