Though the cooks at Taylor's Williamstown reflect a range of culinary traditions with dishes from veggie quesadillas to sesame ahi tuna, classic bar treats remain the core of their menu. They slather char-grilled baby back ribs with signature glazes and top burgers with ingredients such as homemade chili and beer-braised onions. To help wash down feasts, bartenders maneuver around an outdoor cabana deck bar, as well as an indoor granite-top bar, filling glasses with 10 draft beers.
Inside, 15 big-screen, high-definition televisions broadcast the latest hockey, baseball, and football games. In-house competitions also brew during beer-pong tournaments with cash prizes and contests to see who can most accurately read Latin. Over on Taylor's Williamstown's two dance floors, DJs keep guests grooving to an eclectic mix of tunes until 3 a.m. four nights a week.
The chefs at Muscle Maker Grill put a healthy spin on flavorful dishes inspired by Italian, Asian, American, and Southwestern cuisines. The chain was founded in 1995 by Rod Silva, a fitness enthusiast who grew weary of fast-food eateries that bogged customers down with unhealthy morsels and toys sculpted from butter. What began as a smoothie stand has expanded into a successful franchise that slings pastas, burgers, salads, and Tex-Mex–style wraps, and proudly displays the calorie content and relationship status of each dish on the menu.
Villari's Lakeside sits on the shores of Sun Valley Lake, near rustling willows and a quaint gazebo—but its menu seems to think its on the Sicilian coast. Crabmeat fills martini glasses and stuffs jumbo shrimp. Lobster tails wear coats of lemon and butter. Even the Filet Sinatra's 10-ounce filet mignon comes topped with shrimp. The creator of these feasts, Jose Zhinin, brings the Mediterranean to the US, but doesn't stop there. His yearly rotating entrees trek throughout mainland Italy as well, touching everything from chicken parmigiana to build-your-own pasta plates, mixing the traditional with the modern.
Likewise, the restaurant itself combines Old-World elegance with contemporary style. Like the halls of the coolest medieval kings, the two-tiered dining room easily hosts both sumptuous banquets and DJ-driven dance parties. But parties find their home most often at the outdoor tiki bar, whose thatched roof and glowing lanterns cast the lake in a tropical light.
You can't remain the reigning champ of cheesesteak in Gloucester County without having a superior sandwich. And that's just what Little Beef's has, with voters continually lauding their gooey, melty cheesesteak as the best in the county for the last five years. But outside the shop's most well-known sandwich, there's a full menu of hoagies that are worthy of your lunch break. The staff create Philly classics such as the hot sausage and peppers, the meatball parmesan, and the St. Anthony loaded with proscuitto di Parma, provolone, long hots, and sliced tomatoes. These sandwiches pair well with the make-your-own pasta option, and can be swapped out for the lighter wraps or salads that burst with fresh flavors.
Barcelona Bistro's Spanish- and Mediterranean-influenced seafood and tapas earned the elegant bistro-style restaurant a Golden Fork award from South Jersey Magazine in 2012. The restaurant lives up to its accolades with a menu built around the varied tastes, textures, and astrological signs of shareable tapas plates, which include spicy bites of chorizo frito or cool forkfuls of clam in cilantro sauce. Tortilla española earns its stripes as a Spanish classic by showcasing fried potatoes and olive oil in a fluffy egg embrace, and entrees of grilled salmon, pan-seared trout, and bright jumbo shrimp exhibit the coastal influences so integral to Iberian cuisine. The BYOB restaurant's crisp, white tablecloths and dark wood seats create a sophisticated atmosphere to impress first dates, and outdoor seating on the brick patio creates a breezy atmosphere to test the tenacity of trick candles.
Whirls of steam escape from piping-hot pies and pasta, veal, chicken, and seafood dishes as they travel from kitchen to table at Venice Italian Eatery & Pizza. Across the street from the historic Broadway Theatre of Pitman, the 110-seat BYOB eatery treats patrons to a show-stopping menu of pasta favorites with noodles that can be contorted into likenesses of Willy Loman selling Hamlet a timeshare. Entrees can also be transformed into catered fare for the soiree of your choice. The chefs additionally craft an array of handheld sandwiches including burger, pita, and panini varieties.