Whether you live in New Jersey’s largest city, or just passing through on your commute into the city, let it officially be known that there is no need to make the commute for a delicious bite to eat. Beat the lines and have something that simply cannot be had anywhere else. From classic Portuguese dishes to unique and inspired Brazilian cuisine, it is time to dive deep into the world of food that Newark has to offer. Today we state without qualms that the four best restaurants in Newark might be found in a single neighborhood: Ironwood.
This neighborhood, one whose air is thick with the scent of chorizo, is known for its sizable Spanish, Portuguese, and Brazilian populations. Historically, the only food that you could find that was worth anything in the neighborhood were of these varieties. While in recent years, you might be able to come and get any sort of food that you might be craving, no trip is complete without a trip to one of the following restaurants.
This restaurant – impossible to miss due to its castle-like structure – is known more for its atmosphere than food. Nonetheless, guests of all walks of life can be seen devouring plate after plate of their clams and parrilhada. If there is a soccer match that day, the best move is to grab some clams and make your way across the street to the restaurant’s sister location Iberia Tavern and enjoy the passion of the game. We’d also recommend ordering the sangria, or really any drink that is served by the plastic jug rather than the cup.
If you have ever wanted to see evidence of this community’s sizable Brazilian population, this is the best place to start. The menu is filled with Brazilian dishes – a favorite being rodizo (a parade of meat brought out on skewers and sliced right in front of you). In truth, there are no shortage of restaurants in the neighborhood that offer rodizo, but we aren’t talking about unique dishes. We are talking about what restaurants are the best in the city, and not one does it better than Brasilia.
To be honest, no idea how to correctly pronounce this restaurant, but there is no better spot for seafood. Situated just off Ferry Street in one of the neighborhood’s less populated quarters. The menu features only the most authentic of Portuguese cuisine. From decadent seafood like açorda de mariscos (assorted shellfish and cubes of Portuguese bread in a rich sauce) to bar none the best octopus for miles in every direction.
Fornos of Spain
There is no two ways about it, Fornos might well be the best restaurant in the city – with a price tag to match. Not a soul would consider this spot a casual affair, it is the go-to choice for upscale dining by those passing through. They feature a diverse wine selection – including some of the rarest Spanish wines available in the United States. Might we recommend the paella Vaenciana – shellfish, sausage and chicken served over saffron-infused rice. Truly, this is the most authentic Spanish food available stateside.