If chef Scott Cutaneo’s name sounds familiar, it is because he was well known for his cuisine at Le Petite Chateau and Equus in Bernardsville. In December 2012, he took over Oldwick General Store in the quaint town of Oldwick, where he offers breakfast and lunch as well as deli and convenience store items. Recently he also decided to open for dinner, offering Modern American Cuisine from Tuesday through Saturday from 6 PM.
The cozy room were we sat was painted green and white and had large pictures of cows, horses and an antique car creating a country atmosphere. Tables were set with white tablecloths and covered with butcher paper. Be aware that the menu was comprised of three appetizers, four entrees and three desserts. It was not a problem for us but some people prefer more options.
We started with rich pillow-like pasta purses filled with Asiago cheese, poached pear and sheep’s milk ricotta, perfectly combined with a sage brown-butter sauce; we loved the creaminess of this dish. A salad of endive, baby greens, watercress and avocado with a green garden dressing served on a white plate was refreshing, but it was completely green and needed some color to add interest. The appetizer that we did not order, a mushroom cappuccino, may have been more appealing and unique. The fork-tender short-rib entree however was beautiful, presented in a silver-handled pan with braised fennel, pureed potato oozing butter, squash and swirls of green creating a mosaic of flavors, textures and colors; a most appealing dish. Crisp-skinned salmon fillet was served medium rare with a medley of snow peas, olives and skinned cherry tomatoes. The other two entrée choices were a French-cut chicken with a mushroom stuffing and a vegetarian plate. Dessert was a very impressive pecan tart. The other options were petite fours and apple tart.
Service was extremely slow perhaps because of a party of 20 in one of the rooms but chef Cutaneo puts out lovely dishes that please.
57 Main at The Oldwick General Store
Short ribs with braised fennel, pureed potato and squash.
Salmon fillet with snow peas, olives and skinned cherry tomatoes.
Photos courtesy of Lowell Saferstein
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