Monday, November 29, 2021

LT Bar + Grill: My New Shangri-La

This is a review that I’ve been cooking up for the better part of six months, primarily because it’s a place that takes multiple visits to truly understand. The place I’m talking about this time, of course, is LT Bar + Grill. This chic little number was under construction for the better part of a year, right over at The Shops At Riverside.

Every time I passed by the restaurant, I peeped the outside and inside. I saw the beautiful wooden exterior and the modern wood and stone interior. It looked so chic! I just had to get a seat in there! So, I did. And let’s just say, appearances weren’t deceiving here…

The Mood And Ambiance Rock

When you walk into a place like LT Bar, it’s hard not to feel like you’ve made it. Everything about the bar has that warm yet elegant vibe that you expect to see among the wealthy. It’s not gaudy, but it still has that country club ambiance with just a pinch of modernized Art Deco.

People there are pretty cool. I’ve actually struck up conversations with fellow drinkers in the past. With that said, this is absolutely not a casual type of place. If you want super-casual, go to a place like Applebee’s. This is a place where you should dress up elegantly and be on your best behavior—even if the acoustics in the restaurant can get a little loud!

The Menu Will Blow You Away

This is a restaurant that made me do a triple-take when I spotted the menu. The menu has several different styles of food available: sushi, contemporary American, and fusion. I shouldn’t have been shocked, though. The restaurant is spearheaded by French chef Laurent Tourondel—a veteran of the Manhattan food scene.

To get a full idea of each menu type, I had to go back three different times to sample each type of food. Here’s my verdict on each:

  • Sushi. The sushi menu is limited, but oh my god, they know how to do it. The rolls they offer are super fresh, and have that amazing melt-in-your-mouth texture that I love. Oh, and the presentation? It’s mint. I suggest the beef nigiri with shaved truffle. 
  • Contemporary American. Yes, their burgers and fries are good. Their beef burger, in particular, is one of the juiciest I’ve ever tasted. My husband helped me out with that. 
  • Fusion.  Though it could be considered contemporary American, I’m going to go out and say that a lot of their seafood (like the branzino) and steak dishes could be considered fusion. I’ll be honest, this is the kind of food that a foodie like myself dreams of. If you get addicted to food flavors, you might get a bit of a restaurant night problem. 

The Drinks Are Awesome

The drinks were as varied as the food was, and that’s just the way I like it. Though they do have beers, I was far more impressed with the wine selection. Each wine was excellently sourced, and it was pretty easy to ask for a pairing from the staff. 

The cocktails? Oh yeah, they know their mixology and they are often deceptively strong. You might want to grab an Uber if you decide to drink. If you’re not feeling like a Western drink, don’t panic. They have a decent assortment of junmai sake. 

Then There’s The Service

LT Bar and Grill is not your average restaurant. This is the kind of restaurant that is friendly, yet at the same time, runs like a well-oiled machine. Seating is done promptly, and there’s never any confusion about who goes where. Their COVID-19 process is also quick and automated, which means that you can spend less time signing papers, and more time eating.

One thing I definitely suggest is asking your server for a good drink pairing. It’s pretty clear that they’ve trained their staff on pairings, and that can lead to some seriously wonderful food and wine pairings.

My Verdict

If you’re a foodie, then you need to understand that LT Bar and Grill has a deceptively casual name. This is not your typical grill. It’s a veritable wonderland of food, and I mean this in the best way possible. 

LT isn’t just a bar or a grill. Heck, it’s not even just a restaurant. It’s an experience where you get to eat like a rockstar and enjoy every second of it. It’s a foodie paradise, and as a foodie myself, I can say they’ve earned me as a regular.

addressThe Shops at Riverside
390 Hackensack Ave, Hackensack, NJ 07601
Websitehttps://www.ltbarandgrill.com/
telephone(551) 287-6333

Google Reviews

[wp-review-google-place-reviews place_id = “ChIJs40shE37wokRkySKj9mYHaU”]

Yelp Reviews

[wp-review-yelp-business-reviews id=”lt-bar-and-grill-hackensack” title=”LT Bar + Grill ” review_num=”3″]

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Ossiana Tepfenhart
Ossiana Tepfenhart is a food critic, writer, and at home culinary enthusiast!

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