Off Taste

Some cook at home, some dine out, but even on days off, chefs and restaurateurs gotta eat.

Dennis Foy, chef/owner of Dennis Foy’s and Bay Point Prime, both in Point Pleasant, eats out often from September to May, his off-season. “I’m a huge fan of French bistro cooking and dine at Balthazar [in Manhattan’s SoHo] up to 50 times a year,” Foy says. Foy also frequents the Ryland Inn, where he describes the food as “stunning—drop-dead off-the-charts.” He satisfies his sushi cravings at Kazu in Howell.

On his days off, Zod Arifai, chef/owner of Blu in Montclair, is happiest eating his mother’s white-bean cassoulet, but for fine dining, Arifai says, “Bouley [in TriBeCa] is one of the best restaurants in the world. I love their lobster, squab, or buttermilk-poached chicken.”

“Sushi is my junk food,” says Scott Cutaneo, chef/owner of Le Petit Chateau in Bernardsville, who often dines at Nobu in downtown Manhattan or Little Tokyo in Morristown. He also enjoys the hummus and tabbouleh at Byblos in Manhattan. Joyce and Eugene Flinn, owners of Amanda’s in Hoboken, have two tweens—one loves sushi, the other is a vegetarian—so the family often goes to Whole Foods in Millburn, where “everyone can order what they want,” says Joyce. Amanda’s executive chef Rodney Petersen, a Mexican food junkie, is a regular at Jose Tejas in Woodbridge.

“Breakfast for dinner” is what executive chef John Benjamin of Restaurant Latour in Hamburg craves to unwind. “Waffles, pancakes, or eggs are my favorite comfort foods when I cook at home.” When he wants to spend all his rolled pennies, he heads to Columbus Circle for an elegant meal at Per Se.

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