French Restaurants in East Hanover

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Epernay’s executive chef Jayson Grossberg trained under legendary French chef Jean-Louis Palladin before attending New York’s Culinary Institute of America. Grossberg has used his pabulum-preparing powers for good and not evil, recently redesigning Epernay’s menu to add flavorful new dishes, such as the summer gazpacho with crab meat and lime ($10.95). Fresh-caught mussels come in three broths, such as the “a la Linda” with saffron and tomato ($15.95 single serving, $19.95 shared platter). If you'd like to keep your meal as light at a globetrotting eccentric's hot-air balloon, try a juicy beet salad with summer melon, arugula, and feta cheese ($10.95). Reward your stomach for keeping quiet during last night’s visit to the opera with an entree such as caramelized sea scallops with sweet corn, bacon, and tomato ($26.95). Or delve into the crispy duck breast with wild mushrooms, pistachios, and asparagus soaking in a sundried blueberry jus ($26.95) to enjoy a culinary harmony unseen since the California Raisins dominated the airwaves.

6 Park St
Montclair,
NJ
US

A Toute Heure: A User's Guide

New American | French Influences | Local Ingredients | Rotating Seasonal Menus | Monthly Brunch
Sample Menu
  • Starter: creamy roast-garlic soup with cherry-tomato pesto and basil oil
  • Small bite: beer-battered cod with red-and-yellow beet chips
  • Entree: grilled vintage Missouri steak with frites and garlic-saffron aioli
  • Dessert: toffee-apple cake with apple-cider ice cream
When to Go: If it's dinner you're after, then any day Tuesday through Saturday will do. Fans of brunch, however, should mark their calendars for the last Sunday of every month from 10:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. That's the only time that the restaurant serves up its mega-popular à la carte brunch menu, which features favorites such as freshly squeezed juices and housemade french pastries.

While You're Waiting
  • Soak up the charming atmosphere. A reporter for the New York Times even raved that "[d]ays, even weeks after visits to A Toute Heure, I'm still smiling. I'm enamored of its small, sweet dining room…" This bright, airy space is located in a restored 1930s home with views overlooking Centennial Village.
  • A Toute Heure prides itself on being eco-friendly, so do your part by recycling the same dinner conversation from the night before.
Inside Tips
  • The cuisine is wine-friendly and the restaurant is BYOB, so pick up a bottle of chardonnay or syrah before dinner.
  • If you want to capture some of the restaurant's fresh, hyper-seasonal flavors at home, sign up for MarketBox, a farm-share program curated by A Toute Heure's chefs. Participants receive a box overflowing with the best fruits, vegetables, and artisanal products that local farmers have to offer.
  • Reservations are recommended, especially for Saturday dinner and brunch.
While You're in the Neighborhood
Before: Purge all your pent-up tension and stress with a relaxing Swedish massage at Flic Spa (2 South Avenue W.).

After: If, by some chance, you saved room for dessert, treat yourself to a scoop of premium handmade ice cream at Vanilla Bean Creamery (22 North Avenue W.).

232 Centennial Ave
Cranford,
NJ
US

Red Hen Bistro's made-from-scratch menu revolves around the fresh, seasonal meats, fish, and produce in French and Californian cuisine. Francophiles will feel conflicted in trying to select only one dish, be it the croque madame, an upscale ham-and-cheese sandwich topped with a sunny-side-up egg ($10.95), or the salad nicoise, a hearty helping of organic greens crowned with roasted potatoes and hard-boiled eggs ($8.95). California dreamers can sample West Coast–inspired temptations such as tamales with braised pork ($8.95) and fish tacos served in crisp tortillas ($9.95). Simplicity seekers can opt for the tomato soup and grilled cheese ($9.95) while enjoying the restaurant’s attention to detail—evident in both the food and front-of-house service. With rich-red walls, large windows boasting street views, and touches of French country charm, Red Hen Bistro exudes an air of casual intimacy, though lacy nightclothes are discouraged.

525 Moonachie Ave
Wood Ridge,
NJ
US

Paradou takes its name from a village in the southern French countryside, and the provincial influence is apparent in nearly every aspect of the restaurant. No matter what it is serving, the bistro-style eatery celebrates Provençal cuisine with a notable lack of pretention. This isn’t to say that the seasonal menus are unrefined, though. Chef Kfir Ben Ari creates a handful of dishes that experiment with foie gras, including a reimagined gravlax that features foie gras cured in sugar cane, sea salt, and fennel leaves. However, the majority of the menu tempts diners with hearty, provincial classics such as short ribs braised in red wine, cast-iron-roasted duck breast, and bouillabaisse stew. The wine list complements this cuisine, offering more than 40 French wines by the bottle as well as the glass. The wine selection even influences the restaurant’s decor. Bottle-lined shelves reach from the floor to the ceiling along the restaurant’s back wall, and the tables and bar are built using repurposed French wine crates. Beyond the intimately sized dining room’s whitewashed brick walls and rustic, wooden floorboards, a short walk leads to the covered garden area, which seats outdoorsy guests year-round.

8 Little West 12th St
New York,
NY
US

A veal chop cut extra thick and topped with fontina cheese. Salmon caught in the wild. Shrimp topped in pink champagne sauce on a bed of bow-tie pasta. At Il Piccolo Ristorante, gourmet meats and seafoods like these star in the culinary team’s classic Italian dishes. They prepare calamari Cajun-style or fry it and serve it with sweet or hot sauce, rather than ocean water, the original calamari sauce. Their vegetarian plates also delight tongues with Tuscan flavor, ranging from a ricotta-filled roasted eggplant to penne tossed in vodka sauce.

178 Eagle Rock Ave
Roseland,
NJ
US

The chefs of Mardi Gras Fine Foods reach for pure olive oil and MSG-free recipes to create their Mediterranean-, Cajun-, and German-style deli foods. Freshly made main dishes, such as beef brisket and hot-pepper-jelly tortas, sit in a refrigerated deli case, ready to be packaged up and taken home. Meanwhile, bakers whip up brownies, scones, and muffins, and stack platters high with mini-croissant sandwiches and paninis.

Bent on accommodating guests' desires, the courteous staff also takes special orders to meet specific dietary needs. In addition, custom-designed catering menus feed parties from 5 to 500 atop white table linens or the backs of volunteer ghosts.

150 Bloomfield Ave
Verona,
NJ
US