Oldest Newark Restaurants
There is major redevelopment happening in Newark right now that will bring in new businesses that will change theface of the city, yet again. In light of all the great changes happening in Newark, we thought we'd take a step back to look at a few restaurants that have stood the test of time and thrived in Newark for decades, despite the changing landscape.
You will not find a cup of coffee steeped in more history than bold blend of T.M. Ward Coffee company. The coffee company first opened its doors in 1869 and has been keeping Newark caffeinated ever since. T.M. Ward changed hands from the widow of the original owner to William Sommer in 1930 and is currently run by 5th generation Sommers.
While T.M. Ward does a brisk takeout business fueling the coffee and tea habits of locals such as: judges, lawyers, politicians, police, area residents and professionals in close proximity to its Broad Street location, much of the business is done with Tri-state area hotels, gas stations, restaurants and online establishments. If you are a coffee enthusiast, you can even create a custom blend all your own. It is through custom blending that the Judge Alito blend was created, a product that has been immensely popular over the last 10 years with much of it being shipped to Washington D.C. area. Unlike some designer coffee houses, specialty blends such as pumpkin spice, egg nog, ginger bread and a myriad of other flavors are available year ‘round.
Caffeine is good, but mid afternoon caffeine jolts are made that much better when you add an assortment of freshly roasted and packed nuts, dried fruit, veggies and candy that can be found at T.M. Ward. While some candy stores boast customers that may need parental consent for purchase, T.M. Ward’s most frequent candy consumers are adults that come in for classics such as the old fashion hard filled candy and the original Ribbon Candy that has been sold in the store since coming to market over 100 years ago. T.M. Ward ships nationwide and no order is too small, so, once you’ve stopped in and found a favorite coffee blend or specially item, you’ll never have to be without it again.
is no shortage of great restaurants in the Ironbound section of Newark that serve up heaping portions of traditional Portuguese and Spanish style food. The oldest among them is Iberia Tavern and Restaurant. Owned by George Fernandez and Joao Lourero, Iberia opened its door in 1926 and has been serving up large portions of low priced mouth watering favorites such as Paella á Valenciana ( a mix of seafood, sausage and rice) to hungry diners from all over. Other popular offerings from Iberia include: Rodizio (carved and served table side) and broiled lobster, for which there is a year long special.
If you are not in the mood to put your pant waist to the test, you may find Iberia portion sizes intimidating. It is best to go hungry and be prepared to stay and eat through several courses and long conversations. In an average week Iberia prepares and serves up to 1500-2000 pounds of lobster and about 3 times that amount in other meats and poultry. In addition to the extensive menu that features an impressive array of items including a wide assortment of desserts, such as flan, sorbets, bread pudding, saw dust (a mix of heavy cream and cookie crumbles), Iberia has a fine selection of wines from Spain, Portugal, Italy, Chile, France and California. The food, low prices, and 500 car parking facility makes Iberia a hot destination in Newark no matter the time of year.
If you are looking for sweet creamy treats in Newark, look no further than Nasto’s Ice Cream Company. Started in 1939 by Frank and Angelina, Nasto remains family owned and operated. It offers some of the creamiest ice cream and ice cream based treats and desserts in the city. Nasto’s ice cream is made 14% butter fat (pretty much the best you can get) and uses only the highest quality fresh ingredients sourced from local farms and suppliers.
The original Tartufos - a ridiculously delicious blend of vanilla and chocolate ice cream with sliced almonds and cherries encased in silky bittersweet chocolate coating, is a top seller, along with the Reginetta, Cake Roll, Nut Log and Tortonis. The Tortufo is also available in white chocolate, peanut butter, pistachio, mango/coconut, and pumpkin. Not to be missed is the Snowball, a seasonal favorite available from November to January, that’s simply vanilla ice cream generously coated in coconut and topped with a holly red and green garnish.
Nasto’s also carries traditional Italian desserts such cannolis and tiramisu and over 50 traditional ice cream flavors with seasonal favorites: sweet potato pie, pumpkin, egg nog, cranberry pear, and non tradition hits like sweet corn , avocado and mamey. The best part, most of Nasto’s bestsellers are available prepackaged and can be shipped anywhere in the United States.
Forget everything you’ve ever experienced from a deli that serves you sandwiches with cold meats fresh out of plastic. The over 80 year old Bragman’s Jewish style Deli on Hawthorne Avenue in Newark, prepares and serves up hundreds of pounds of brisket, corned beef, pastrami and turkey per week. Sandwiches are piled high with thin steaming slices of melt-in-your mouth goodness that will leave counting down the days to your next visit. The sandwiches in the restaurant bare the names of family members and loyal customers who created memorable food masterpieces. The most popular among them is Janice, a beauty that features hot pastrami, hot corned beef and turkey, homemade coleslaw and Russian dressing.
The owner and manager of Bragman’s, Lawrence Reisner, comments that some people make Bragman’s their first stop from the Newark airport and it’s those people that keep him in business. He further remarked, “they can’t get what we serve anywhere else, so they keep coming back.” On our visit, we met Rakheim Bembry, who has been going to Bragman’s for over 20 years, he states, “ It’s the best deli around. Customer service is great and the sandwiches are even better.” When asked for his favorite sandwich he says, “I have three, the Charlie, the Ruth and the Sam.”
Christene is known among her friends as a jack-of-all-trades, which for her translates to never being bored. By profession, Christene is a marketing and social media strategist and beauty editor. When she is not busy marketing compelling concepts or testing beauty products, she is crafting food and drink recipes, socializing, writing, making dresses, eating, or any of a myriad of random things she thoroughly enjoys. Find Christene on her blog, www.christenecarr.com, and follow her randomness on Twitter @ChristeneCarr