February 2018: The New Faces of New Jersey

Tears, fears, joy and triumph in pursuit of the American Dream. Plus: the 25 Best New Restaurants in the state.

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Best New Restaurants

The 25 Best New Restaurants of 2018

Sophistication that’s a cinch to slip into. Full spectrums of food, drink, design and price. From fine dining to grab-and-go, New Jersey has again gifted us fun new places to eat.

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Portraits of Perserverence

The State of Immigration in New Jersey

The Garden State has long been a beacon for the foreign born.

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Immigration Stories: Esther Salas

By age 38, Esther Salas was selected as New Jersey’s first Latino federal magistrate judge. Five years later, she became the state’s first Latina U.S. District Court judge.

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Immigration Stories: Charlie Patel

Charlie Patel spent his youth helping his family making ends meet with odd jobs. Today he’s used that entrepreneurial spirit to co-found a digital marketing agency.

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Immigration Stories: The Mustafas

Khaldiya Mustafa, principal of Al-Ghazaly High School in Wayne, and her husband Mustafa imbue their children with pride in their Muslim heritage.

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Immigration Stories: The Cotos

The Coto family seem to be the typical all-American family. They own a business. They pay their taxes. There’s just one difference: They’re undocumented.

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Immigration Stories: Venessa Manzano

Much of Venessa Manzano’s life’s work has focused on preserving Filipino culture. In 2008, she founded the Filipino School of New York and New Jersey, a nonprofit focused on keeping Filipino traditions and history alive.

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Immigration Stories: Sunjoo Hwang Kim

Paterson teacher Sunjoo Hwang Kim once felt like an outside in America. Now, she embraces the traditions of both the US and her native South Korea.

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Immigration Stories: The Dominicans of Perth Amboy

Seventy-eight percent of Perth Amboy’s population of about 53,000 is Latino. Dominicans are the largest subgroup, and work hard to give back to their community.

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Immigrant Students Provide Lessons in Perseverance

Elena Gorokhova, an immigrant from Russia, writes about the things she’s learned from her students studying English as second language.

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Eat & Drink

Little Place, Big Flavors: Park Place in Merchantville

Philip Manganaro didn’t plan on his modest, 32-seat byo becoming a sensation. But runaway success is a good problem to have.

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Reinventing a Favorite: A Toute Heure in Cranford

The new owners of A Toute Heure in Cranford changed the menu, the chef, almost everything but the name. The other thing they didn’t change was the high quality of the food and service.

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New Ways With Mediterranean: Zeugma Grill in Montclair

At Zeugma Grill in Montclair, chef Can (pronounced John) Alp, 28, scores with his unique Avoganoush, a literal mashup of avocado and baba ghanoush.

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At the Syria Supper Club, Food is the Universal Language

Food and fellowship need no translation as the Syria Supper Club brings Jerseyans and refugees together to break bread and build bridges.

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Choc’ It Up for Cupid with Chocolate Stout

Chocolates for your Valentine are nothing new, but Libations columnist Tara Nurin recommends snuggling up with your sweetie and a bottle of a surprisingly complex chocolate stout.

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India, Southern Style: Amma’s South Indian Cuisine in Voorhees

Amma’s South Indian Cuisine in Voorhees will introduce you to the distinctive cooking of Southern India. Feeling adventurous? Ask for your meal to be served the traditional way, on a banana leaf instead of a plate.

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A New Kind of Pop-Up: Project P.U.B in Somerville

In Somerville, Mike and Susan Proskey opened Project P.U.B. one flight above their tapas place, Tapastre. The initials stand for Pop-Up Brewpub, and the theme is pub fare plus devoting all the draft lines each month to a different brewery.

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Features

When Home is School

More families are taking education into their own hands—and into their own homes. Here’s how they make it work.

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Garden Variety

Catching Dreams on a Summit Stage

The mission of the Dreamcatcher Repertory Theatre in Summit is to, “build community with the audience by sharing life-affirming stories in an intimate environment.”

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Breaking Bread and Talking Shop on Pasta and Politics

Nick Acocella’s NJTV show, “Pasta and Politics” combines three of his passions: Cooking, eating, and politics.

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A Conversation with Martin Truex Jr.

NJM spoke with 2017 NASCAR Monster Energy Cup champion Martin Truex Jr. about the upcoming NASCAR season and why NJ drivers get a bad rap.

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Laurie Wallmark is Defying STEM Stereotypes

Laurie Wallmark’s latest book, “Grace Hopper: Queen of Computer Code”—a Parents’ Choice Gold Medal awardee—follows the life of a trailblazing software tester and inventor who taught computers how to speak English.

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Only in NJ with Steve Adubato

Pursuing the Dream

Polish immigrant Martyna Majok’s plays provide a knowing window into the lives of newcomers.

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Home & Garden

Master Design for Master Bath

Here’s what happens when a certified bath designer takes on his own project.

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Splurge or Skimp?

Certified master kitchen and bath designer Anthony Passanante offers a few tricks of the trade on planning your bathroom budget.

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Exit Ramp

Ode to an Obituary Writer, a Dying Breed

Jay Levin, New Jersey’s last obit writer, mourns the passing of his breed.

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