Local Restaurants Reveal Their “Locals Only” Off-Menu Winter Items
By Kimberly Shurig
Food and Beverage Editor
Forget the “Secret Menu” at McDonald’s. It was fun and exclusive until I saw the movie “Supersize Me.”
In a number of our local restaurants, however, clandestine meal options exist for those in the know. Some are dishes that patrons routinely request after they appeared as a special or vanished from the menu because revisions were made. Others were born on a whim by chefs who cooked for a table of close friends or fellow employees — and for reasons of culinary greatness, they stuck around discreetly.
I hacked into several of my favorite local go-to spots and discovered things you won’t see printed on their menus.
Vagabond Kitchen & TapHouse
Atlantic City, NJ
I’ve had almost everything on the menu and not one meal has disappointed. They serve over 18 tap beers on tap 6 exclusively for New Jersey, it’s an authentic craft beer drinkers paradise. While you are already dining in style, take the experience to the next level by ordering off the menu. The Carne Asada with homemade rice and beans , fresh queso fresco, sliced avocado, homemade green salsa, and toasty tortillas! This is one of those places that if you go there for any reason it is always a good decision
Somers Point, NJ
I’m getting ready to order my usual crab dip and easy Fingers and I can’t help but notice the sizzling fajitas passing by. I dine at the Anchorage often and I know for a fact they don’t serve fajitas. I look up at the bartender, “It’s our off-menu winter item,” Joey Mac says, reading my mind. “It’s available only in the winter, we don’t advertise because it’s only for the locals, “ adds bartender Adam Bruno. The staff won’t come right out and tell you about this tasty item unless you specifically ask. Not even me. But now we know.
Carne Asada , homemade rice and beans , queso fresco fresh avocado and homemade green salsa, and a few tortillas!!
Somers Point, NJ
In this era of food anxiety, it’s no wonder we sometimes feel the need to throw the book away and tuck into foods that remind us of a simpler time. Fitzpatricks easily reminds us of those simpler times with their “Better than Mom’s” Meatloaf (sorry mom) Just when you thought this comfort food classic had nothing else to teach us, it gets reinvented, this time at the hands of talented Chef Bill Fitzpatrick. It is made from a combination of beef, pork, and veal, individually baked to order (yeah, how come Mom never did that?), served with mashed potatoes, sautéed asparagus , and a rich homemade mushroom gravy. Get it while you can! It’s only served during the winter as an off the menu item.
I’m serious, people: You need this meatloaf in your life.