Summertime is here, and according to ’90s reggae punkers Sublime, the living is apparently now “easy.” What’s not always so easy, however is finding new spots to stuff your face. Sure, you could hit up the classics and the old standbys, but with so many brand spanking new restaurants, beer halls, bakeries and smokeries opening up, you’d be a fool not to venture out of your comfort zone. To help you do that, here are a list of dining spots that either just opened or are planning to open this summer.
MADE: One of the first shops to open as part of the Tennessee Avenue Renaissance Project, MADE specializes in all things chocolate. The brainchild of chef duo Deb and Mark Pellegrino, this spot offers made-from-scratch chocolate (or “bean to bar” as they call it) treats, as well as chocolate-based cocktails in a fun, trendy space. Located at 121 S. Tennessee Ave. in Atlantic City. Go to MadeACChocolate.com.
Hayday Coffee: Another spot on Tennessee Avenue that is soon to open its doors is Hayday. Started by a trio of friends Evan Sanchez, Loryn Simonsen, and Zenith Shah, Hayday will be the only independantly owned coffee shop in Atlantic City when it opens. The coffee served at Hayday will be roasted right here in The Garden State from beans sourced throughout the Americas. At 131 S. Tennessee Ave. in Atlantic City. Go to HaydayCoffee.com.
Tennessee Avenue Beer Hall: The crown jewel of the Tennesee Avenue Renaissance Project, Tenneessee Avenue Beer Hall will be stocked with over 100 craft brews — hand selected by Press of Atlantic City Director of Entertainment Publications and Fat Boy Munch Club member Scott Cronick — and will feature some of the best eats in A.C. Chef Charles Soreth’s menu will showcase pub grub and comfort foods — but with flavors and recipes most bars dare only dream of. Their hot dogs alone are sure to bring the crowds. Look for them to open sometime in July. At 133 S. Tennessee Ave., Atlantic City. TenneseeAvenueBeerHall.com.
Mannino’s Cannoli Express: Originally started as a food truck, Mannino’s Cannoli Express quickly gained a cult following. At noon this Saturday, May 26, they officially open their first brick and mortar location in Hammonton. Along with a wide variety of cannoli flavors (fittingly for a Hammonton store, a blueberry one is on the menu), Mannino’s offers pastries, gelato and other sweet treats. Located at 220 Bellvue Ave. in Hammonton. Go to Facebook.com for more info.
Gordon Ramsay Steak at Harrah’s: One of the most famous chefs in the world, Gordon Ramsay is bringing his steakhouse concept Gordon Ramsay Steak to Harrah’s Resort. The new restaurant is Ramsay’s second outing in Atlantic City, the first being Gordon Ramsay Pub & Grill at Caesars Atlantic City. Gordon Ramsay Steak will replace Harrah’s former steakhouse (simply known as The Steakhouse) and is scheduled for a soft opening this weekend. The spot will serve everything from dry-aged steaks to seafood, and will be the second Gordon Ramsay Steak location, the other located in Las Vegas. Harrah’s is located at 777 Harrah’s Blvd. in Atlantic City. Go to Caesars.com.
The Chelsea: Last July, Tropicana purchased The Chelsea, and for the better part of a year they have worked to improve the space and offer more non-gaming options for guests. In addition to the skybridge that opens this weekend, this summer it will unveil a new restaurant concept, Chelsea Five Gastropub. The restaurant will offer seafood, steak and a variety of pastas and will boast panoramic ocean views, along with an adjacent outdoor terrace and lounge. The Chelsea is located at 111 S. Chelsea Ave. in Atlantic City. Go to Tropicana.net for more.
Mudhen Brewery: At its grand opening in April, Mudhen Brewing Company became the latest in a string of South Jersey-based breweries to open its doors. Run by Brendan and Robin Sciarra — who also own Wildwood’s Dogtooth Bar and Grill — Mudhen offers more than just beer, serving a full menu of culinarily elevated bar fare and barbecue. The massive space is reminiscent of a German beer hall, with high ceilings and large communal tables. Located at 127 W. Rio Grande Ave. in Wildwood. Go to MudhenBrew.com.
Jessie’s of Linwood: Located in a building that dates back to 1901 sits a brand-new ice cream parlor/coffee shop/bakery concept. The fully transformed and renovated space is Jessie’s of Linwood, the brainchild of owner Jessica Schmidt, which is set to open its doors this weekend. Dessert aficionados will be pleased to find the legendary Bassett’s Ice Cream on hand, along with fresh baked cookies and coffee from La Columbe. Jessie’s of Linwood is located at 136 W. Poplar Ave. in Linwood. Go to Facebook.com for more.
Choice Bar & Grill: What’s in a name? Well, in this case, a lot apparently, as Choice Bar & Grill offers patrons four different types of cuisine to make their choice from — American, Italian, Mexican and Japanese. This Atlantic City bar/restaurant just opened its doors recently and the positive buzz is spreading fast. Choice Bar and Grill is located at 470 N. Albany Ave in Atlantic City. Go to Facebook.com for more info.
The Pickwickian Tavern & Smokery: Carnivores take note — The Pickwickian Tavern and Smokery needs to be on your “must-do” list for the summer of 2018. This newly opened restaurant prides itself on its use of nothing but the best hand-picked meats for its many barbecue dishes, all of which are smoked on site. Their burgers are not to be missed either and use only the finest grass-fed beef available. The Pickwickian Tavern & Smokery is located at Route 40 and Cedar Avenue in Richland. Go to Pickwickian.net for more.
Shore Fire Grille: Shore Fire Grille has been a favorite of South Jersey foodies for a while, and now a second location of this Manahawkin staple just opened on LBI. Located in the town of Surf City, Shore Fire Grille serves everything from salads and sandwiches to one of the most impressive and lengthy list of burger options you will find anywhere. Their turkey-based Pilgrim Burger took home a Fat Boy Munch Club award at A.C. Weekly’s Burger Bash 3 this year. Shore Fire Grill is located at 1718 Long Beach Blvd. in Surf City. Go to ShoreFireGrille.com for more.
Kitchen 330: This spring, Kitchen 330 opened its doors, adding an exciting new restaurant to Stone Harbor’s dining scene. Its concept, “fine dining at casual prices” means that your average Joe can order fancy items like pan-roasted arctic char and duck cakes without having to refinance his home. Chef Gus Zimmerman is the mastermind behind the space, where the concept of farm-to-table comes naturally. Zimmerman actually grew up on a farm as a boy, which means to him anything less than fresh is not acceptable. The space is currently open for dinner Friday and Saturday nights, as well as brunch on Sundays. Kitchen 330 is located at 330 96th Street in Stone Harbor. Go to Kitchen330.com for more.
Quincy’s Orig. Lobster Rolls: When Quincy’s Original Lobster Rolls opened its first location, it had one simple concept in mind — to bring the flavors and simple vibe of New England’s best lobster shacks to our region. It proved to be a winning formula, as Quincy’s is now about to open its third location, this time on Sea Isle City’s famous Landis Avenue. In traditional lobster shack fashion, this place is not about fancy tablecloths and tuxedoed waiters. Instead, it’s a great spot to roll off the beach and grab a few lobster rolls to enjoy with friends. Located at 4215 Landis Ave. in Sea Isle. Go to QuincysOriginal.com for more.
Morey’s Piers: Wildwood’s famous Morey’s Piers welcomes a pair of new bar/restaurant concepts for this summer: Wilhelm’s Bier Garden and Pig Dog Beach Bar. Wilhelm’s Bier Garden is Oktoberfest themed and will offer a variety of German and local craft beers along with brats, perogies and more. Pig Dog Beach Bar is a laid back, dog-friendly spot that focuses on barbecue and beers that will also feature live bands. Located on the Wildwood boardwalk. Go to MoreysPiers.com for more info.
Jersey Girl: Now under new management and with a brand new, revamped menu, Jersey Girl in Wildwood shows up for 2018 looking like that girl who suddenly got really pretty since the last time you saw her. Executive Chef Argie Mallous and his brother George have taken the reigns with a menu they describe as “American cuisine with a touch of Mediterranean.” Expect light and flavorful dishes perfect for summer at the shore. Located at 3601 Atlantic Ave. in Wildwood. Go to JerseyGirlDrinksAndDining.com.
The Beachin’ Bakery: This newly opened Ocean City bakery specializes in everything from elaborate wedding cakes to custom-made cookies and cake pops. While many spots produce items such as these, The Beachin’ Bakery’s versions are not only delicious, but possess a rustic, shabby chic artistic style that makes them really stand out. Located at 1046 Asbury Ave. in Ocean City. Call 609-814-2136.
Dead End Bakehouse: Promising “bagels, baked goods and so many other delicious carbs,” Dead End Bakehouse already has folks in and around Ocean City curious for what’s to come. Plans for a summer opening are in place for this bakery, which means Ocean City can add one more spot to their growing army of breakfast-oriented eateries. Located at 1050 Bay Ave. in Ocean City. Go to DeadEndBakehouse.com.
Heart Beet Kitchen: Serving as a counterbalance to all the spots in Ocean City peddling sugar bombs and endless servings of deep fried whatever its the newest location of Heart Beet Kitchen. Heart Beet proudly serves gluten-free, dairy-free, peanut-free, plant-based organic and locally sourced foods. It’s the kind of place that you can grab a green drink after a jog and head home feeling great about yourself. Located at 801 8th Street in Ocean City. Go to HeartBeetNJ.com.
Chez Michel: This new bakery from celebrated Pastry Chef Michel Gras — formerly of Cape May’s Little Store Bakery — will focus on Gras’ specialty: wedding cakes. Chez Michel is yet to announce a formal opening date, but looks to be open by late spring or early summer. The shop will mostly focus on the aforementioned wedding cakes, but Gras has said that they plan to do a few other items as well, including sticky buns and croissants. Located at 600 Park Blvd. in West Cape May. Go to Facebook.com.