Saturday, September 13, 2008

Rex and Roxy Share a Delicious Lunch at Equus Restaurant in Bernardsville, New Jersey

The girls were busy at school and we didn't have any business conference calls scheduled on Friday afternoon, so Rex and I decided to slip away to drop off a donation at the Visiting Nurses Rummage Sale in Far Hills, pick up a case of wine at Gary's and to try out Equus, a new-ish restaurant in Bernardsville, New Jersey. Mysteriously, the Equus web site claims that they were "established 1848," but my recollection is Spring 2008. Before that, the building housed a not-very-good pizza and casual food establishment called the Stone Tavern where Rex and the girls and I had some of the worst steamed clams in our family history.

Luckily, Equus is a dramatic improvement over its predecessor. We looked over the menu and decided that, while I was ravenous from my morning workout and the descriptions were so good that we could eat almost anything on the lunch menu, we would stick with two appetizers each. I started with the Crispy Fried Calamari with sambol aioli & wasabi honey drizzle ($10) was quite good and the wasabi really had a nice kick to it. As my entree, I enjoyed the Tuna & Rice Paper Wrap appetizer with cucumber & green papaya slaw with nuok chem sauce ($14)...there were four pieces, enough for two people, so I shared half with Rex. Now, here comes trouble...our waiter didn't have any menus that we could take home, promising that the menus are all on the Equus web site, but so far I haven't found either of Rex's dishes online. His first appetizer was a "perfectly executed" pulled pork over cornbread pancake that disappointed Rex only because he remembered (too late) that he doesn't really enjoy cornmeal based items such as tortillas or corn muffins. Rex's second dish was his favorite -- charred tuna. I'm afraid I didn't take any pictures of the food, just the surroundings, which gave Equus just the right ambiance.


Ferd said...

Glad you didn't take pictures. Your descriptions were mouth-watering. I think pictures would have made me drool!
Great review! : )

Anonymous said...

I often dine at Equus and have had great experiences with not only the food but the service. The menu changes each season or there abouts so this is perhaps why Rex's dish was not listed on the site. Michael is head chef. I recommend you speak directly with him regarding any food info in the future. He is lovely, personable and gives you real insights to the backgrounds of his choices. They have done a remarkable 'overhaul' as I refer to it now. The meals are a bit more affordable and the dress code has been changed to more casual. I personally do not care for jeans to be worn without a jacket at dinner and some people dress far too casually there but I suppose any dress brings in money! The wines are well selected too. I do not care for the chairs as they are too worn and need to be refilled for long sits. I prefer to eat slowly when enjoying a fine dining experience. I also do not care for the short sleeved look on the waiters. Outside pub fair on the patio is one thing but when dinner inside is served, they need to have some decorum. This may seem trivial and petty to some but just a personal choice. Their bar service needs improvement. (Sometimes a long wait when ordering food at the bar area and the girls can get distracted, forgetting to ask if any seconds are needed) On a positive note, the 'bar maids' make a good drink. I have only ever seen women there making the drinks. I think this is to entertain and attract male customers! However, they are friendly and courteous. I would recommend going again soon before the winter menu changes. The Griggstown Chicken is awesome.