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“Best meal Ever!”
Review of Christines Italian

Christines Italian
Certificate of Excellence
Dining options: Reservations
Restaurant details
Dining options: Reservations
Reviewed 9 September 2015

We were looking for a romantic dinner while staying at the Inn across the street. We stopped in just as they had a cancellation! The veal chop was amazing (the best my husband has ever had) and you have got to try the Italian Eggrolls!!! We never order dessert but we had the cheesecake...it was delicious. If you ever get to Atlantic Highlands, make sure you have a reservation for Christines! Also, it is BYOB so bring your bottle of wine.

    • Value
    • Service
    • Food
1  Thank AJ S
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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59 - 63 of 95 reviews

Reviewed 2 August 2015

Reservations needed on a Saturday night. Highly recommended by our friends, the four of us went for dinner this past weekend. The evening started with an arugula salad for two. An out-right lie. This salad easily serves four. The arugula tasted as if it were picked that the morning. and the abundance of shaved cheese was a perfect compliment.

Moving on to the appetizers, the Italian Eggrolls are unique and not to be missed; the Veal Meatballs are light, tender and a meal size portion; and the Zuppa de Clams were prepared to perfection (steamed in white wine with a tomato sauce that came from Grandma's kitchen). For our main course, two of us shared the split veal chop listed as the restaurant's signature dish. A top grade veal chop smothered in cheese, butter, and spices. I'm guessing that a person would have to be not less than 6'2" and 220 pounds to be able to finish a full portion. I though the cheese was a little over the top and masked the taste of the veal, the person I was sharing the dish with thought I was nuts and that this was the best ever. The Swordfish on the bone with a pesto sauce was the winner at the table (the Chef makes it with two different sauces, depending on what he feels like that morning, both are fantastic).

The owner/chef, Ron Marino, circulates among the tables making sure that everything was prepared to your satisfaction. Always with a smile, his eyes light up when you compliment (deserved) a particular dish. He cares that you're having a good time. The wait staff paid just enough attention to provide a even flow to the meal without rushing the patrons (again, perfect). The water glasses were always filled, and the dishes cleared for the next course, little things that go unnoticed when they are done in a timely manner.

Nothing is perfect. The coffee was a little weak for my taste. I was going to comment that the room is a little loud until I realized that it was our table doing the laughing because we were having such a good time.

    • Value
    • Service
    • Food
1  Thank FamilyMan13
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 30 July 2015

This restaurant is not the easiest to reach by roadway due to the traffic caused by beachfront. However if you have access to a boat things are simplified. But what the neck, I would sit for hours in traffic if I knew a table awaited me.
On a previous visit to the town this summer we came upon Ronny the owner taking a cigarette break. His establishment immediately passed my personal litmus test by being completely full on a Saturday evening.he was very cordial and indefatigable as regarded squeezing us in. You do need to make reservations.Anyway, that evening he suggested a competing business and that was okay. Wetting my appetite to return.
This we did last weekend. I started with the baby artichoke appetizer, an incredible dish. I would have spoilt my appetite with bread but fortunately this is not offered. Fortunate because I would not have been able to complete my entree. Soft shell crabs, a personal favourite. Ronny does not serve up any variety but insists on the largest possible, Whalers. If two of these were not enough it is doused on top with lump crab meat, total decadence.
I followed up with a home made lemon sponge cake with mascarpone, again outrageously good and accompanied with an excellent cup of espresso. Another measure of a good restaurant when it is delivered with crema and wonderful taste. They obviously stay well on top of maintaining this equipment.
Considering that the prices are middling for eating out well these days, Christine's becomes an absolute bargain when you are able to bring your own wine and not suffer corkage fees.
I highly recommend this establishment and cannot wait to return.
By the way did I mention how genial and welcoming you are made to feel upon arrival, whilst eating and on departure?

2  Thank mizzenman2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 14 July 2015

This is a great little restaurant that I have been frequenting for several years. I even wrote my first review for Giannas which was in the same location and preceded Christines by a decade. It is a BYOB which is good and bad. The restaurant business has tight margins and the fact that no liquor is sold means the price of the food has to meet the monthly nut! New Jersey should relax these archaic, controlling, prohibitive licensing laws.
The dishes are excellent but the cost has become very high. They will serve you a salad for $19. Its huge and can feed 3 or 4 diners but I find that hard to accept paying $19 for romaine lettuce,parmesan cheese croutons and Caesar dressing. I also was surprised to find out that when I ordered the veal parmigiana it did not come with a side order of pasta. It was just a plate with the veal which was huge and tasty. Likewise with the chicken same thing, just chicken. The veal was $29. For that amount on an entree there should be some pasta and a small salad. At the beginning of the meal they placed some toasted bread and roasted peppers on the table. A nice touch but they don't serve bread with your meal. And finally they have specials, one of which was a steak, which we asked the waitress how much it cost. She was a little non-plussed by that "transgression" however the steak was $54. I am glad I asked and passed on the steak too. She also had a 16 ounce pork chop for $38 which is also a bit too pricey especially if it shows up on your plate with nothing else! The service was very good and the ambience is fine and the prices would be acceptable if you received a salad, and vegetables or pasta with your entree and had some bread to complete the meal. Slamming down a plateful of chicken or veal parmigiana doesn't make for an appetizing adventure in dining. I won't be dining at Christine's any time soon. Ultimately its not a decent value for your money.

    • Value
    • Service
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3  Thank Blaise P
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 1 July 2015

This little place has the most delicious food and a very friendly environment. Some of the dishes are creative. Bring your own is fine.

Thank pussanova6277
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC

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