—It’s un petit peu—later than planned—but Montclair’s very own temple of French gastronomy is finally open and serving as of Tuesday. Called Faubourg (pronounced foh-BOOR, a French coinage for the suburbs of Paris), the restaurant on Bloomfield Avenue was created by Dominique Paulin and Olivier Muller, who—as we noted last November—have more than a few decades between them working in Daniel Boulud’s sleek Francophone restaurant empire (aka The Dinex Group). Explanations for the several-month delay aren’t abundant—our guess is it had to do with the ambitious build-out of the large space, at one time a bank then a theater then a movie mini-multiplex.
Award-winning designer Craig Shillitto converted the space into two-level restaurant (with a ground floor and mezzanine), multiple dining areas, a speakeasy-style lounge upstairs, private spaces for events, and a two-story wine cellar that will ultimately hold around 2,000 bottles.
Muller is the restaurant’s executive chef. As corporate chef of Dinex, Muller oversaw Boulud restaurant openings from Singapore to Montreal to New York City. (He got his start in the kitchen at a two-Michelin-star restaurant in Marlenheim, France). As Muller and Paulin told us last November, Faubourg intends to be casual and fresh yet sophisticated. Faubourg, 544 Bloomfield Avenue, Montclair; 973-542-7700
—Follow the trail of smoke from Little Ferry to Paramus. Robert Cho’s Kimchi Smoke KTX (a quick service version of his award-winning Texas Korean barbecue spot in Westwood) was to open in the Little Ferry H-Mart this month. Those plans stalled in late May, but now the second restaurant has a new home: the H-Mart on Route 17 in Paramus. Besides the change in location, plans for the spot are the same: a slightly funkier menu than Westwood’s, anchored by rice bowls and tacos, here and there featuring chef and pitmaster Cho’s low-and-slow protein magic. Expected opening is roughly mid-July. Meanwhile keep an eye on the KTX Instagram—Cho seems to like teasing out possible menu ideas (“BBQ Pizza with Kimchi & Smoked Chicken?”) Kimchi Smoke KTX, 60 Route 17, Paramus; no phone yet.
—Marky Mark wants Jersey to eat his burgers. Or something like that was probably the message when Mark Wahlburg stopped by the June 21 opening of his family’s first New Jersey Wahlburgers at the Ocean Casino Resort in Atlantic City. The franchise is founded on the cooking of Paul Wahlburg and known for its eponymous burgers (prepared with top-secret “Wahl Sauce” and “government cheese”). But the menu runs from a vegetarian portobello sandwich to Mom’s Sloppy Joe to the likely Boston-born Grilled “Fluffanutta.” The franchise (which spawned a TV show) has locations across the country and internationally. Wahlburgers, Ocean Casino Resort, 500 Boardwalk, Atlantic City; 609-783-8868
In the Works:
—Elmas Turkish and Mediterranean Cuisine should open on Route 46 in Parsippany, a spokesperson says, in three weeks or so. Few menu details available, although the name suggests you’ll find traditional Turkish fare with some Mediterranean cross-overs. The restaurant fills a longstanding vacancy at the end of a small strip mall that was formerly home to J.C.’s Italian Bakery, which closed in April of 2014 after 33 years in business. Elmas Turkish and Mediterranean Cuisine, 1561 Route 46, Parsippany; 973-917-4700
—It’s a bit of a ways out, but Haddon Heights will get a new microbrewery sometime in the next year. The town council approved plans for Tanner Brewing Company, to be run by longtime Haddon Heights resident Joe Gentile (who also owns the Local Links market in town), with Haddon Heights resident and Cape May Brewing co-owner Chris Henke consulting. Once complete, the brewery will do a relatively small output (600 gallons a week, Henke estimates), and half the 1,800 square-foot space will go to retail and customer interaction. Gentile wants the brewery to contribute to—rather than interrupt or inconvenience—the flow and quality of the Haddon Heights business district. The brewery site on Atlantic Avenue has been empty for some time; a proposal to convert it to apartments was previously rejected. Tanner Brewing Company, 222 West Atlantic Avenue, Haddon Heights; no phone yet.Click here to leave a comment