Falling for the flavors of the season

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    As the weather cools down most restaurant-goers search for meals to warm them up and add an element of comfort food to their meal. Many chefs in the Monmouth and Ocean county areas create seasonal menus with tastes of fall to their dining menus with dishes very much apropos of the season. From fall fruits and vegetables to heartier dishes such as seafood pot pies and apple cider pork chops, dishes sure to warm you up even on the chilliest autumn day.

    B2 BISTRO + BAR

    B2 Bistro + Bar offers two locations for dining at 709 Arnold Ave., Point Pleasant Beach, and 141 Shrewsbury Ave., Red  Bank. Each location offers its own unique menu and ambiance but both focus on local ingredients and seasonal flavors.

    Stop into the Point Pleasant location and savor the flavors of fall starting with an Autumn Kale Salad comprised of apples, shaved radish, cauliflower florets, honey mustard vinaigrette and pumpkin seeds.

    Shareable dishes to note would be the Butternut Squash Hummus made with seasonal vegetables, marinated olives and naan pita as well as the Organic Wings topped with a Maple Bourbon BBQ sauce and Apple Slaw on the side.

    The Pumpkin Fettuccine adds multiple fall elements with Roasted Brussel Sprouts and mascarpone. Large plates include, but are not limited to, the Seared Scallops with Butternut Squash Puree, Roasted Artichoke Hearts and warm honey mustard vinaigrette and the Kurobuta Pork Chop with Butternut Squash Risotto and a balsamic reduction.

    When dining at B2 Bistro’s Red Bank location, start off your meal with the Fall Pear Salad, which includes a Goat Cheese Souffle, red endive and a pear cognac vanilla vinaigrette. For dinner choose between several delectable dishes such as the Spiced Short Rib served with Sweet Potato Parmesan Puree and Glazed Root Vegetables.

    If you’re more in the mood for a wood-fired pizza, delve into the Smoked Brussel Sprout Pizza topped with Danish bleu cheese, roasted pears and finished with a balsamic glaze.

    THE GRAND TAVERN

    The Grand Tavern, 1105 6th Ave., Neptune, is open daily from 5 to 10 p.m. and offers guests a dining experience that starts out with various small plates, then entrees and desserts that are all carefully crafted to the season and change accordingly.

    Noteable small plates include the Braised Pork Belly served with Lentils and an apple cider glaze, Sweet Potato Gnocchi with brown butter, sage and breadcrumbs, and Agnolotti with taleggio lemon cream, toasted walnuts, balsamic and grapes.

    Fall entrees include a Short Rib dish served with Root Vegetables, a Parsnip Puree and jus. The Scallops are served with a Honeynut Squash Puree, Mushrooms, ‘nduja and Tuscan Kale.

    Make sure to save room for a sweet treat. The Brandied Apple Bread Pudding topped with caramel and whipped cream is the only way to end your meal.

    REMINGTON’S

    Remington’s, 142 Main St., Manasquan, always offers guests a seasonal selection of tasty dishes and its fall menu is nothing short of that. Start your dining experience with Remington’s Tri-Color Fall Salad with radicchio, endive, baby arugula, candied walnuts, sliced apples, herbed goat cheese croutons and finished with a white balsamic vinaigrette.

    Fall in Love with Beets is a vegetarian and gluten-free dish comprised of hummus, marinated beets, imported halloumi cheese, radish, carrot, snow peas, pine nuts and topped with an extra virgin olive oil drizzle and Mediterranean sea salt.

    The Grilled Flatbread is a hot starter with melted brie cheese, grapes, toasted pine nuts, arugula and a local honey drizzle finish. Warm up with a hearty entree like the Seafood Pot Pie filled with lobster, shrimp, bay scallops, clams, mirepoix, potato and a puff pastry top.

    The 12 oz. Bone-in Grilled Premium Reserve Pork Chop is coated with the chef’s house dry rub, Smashed Sweet Potatoes, Broccolini and an espresso BBQ glaze. The Chicken Milanese is served with arugula, artichokes, red onion, sundried tomato, shaved parmigiano-reggiano and pomegranate vinaigrette.

    CAVE BISTRO

    Cave Bistro, 515 Sylvania Ave., Avon-By-The-Sea, run by Douglass Stehle, executive chef and owner, offers guests a seasonal, farm-to-table menu and a dedicated gluten-free menu of healthy dishes made from scratch.

    The Fall Dinner menu is far from short of seasonal and delectable dishes fit for the fall weather. Salads are served in small or large portions with options including the Oak Leaf Salad dressed with a ginger-pear vinaigrette and the Baby Arugula Salad topped with toasted pumpkin seeds, avocado, red onion and creamy raw cashew-lime dressing.

    Start off with small plates like Heritage Slab Bacon with beet “ketchup” and pickled jalapeno-apple relish or Pan Roasted Octopus with preserved lemon, shaved fennel and an arugula puree.

    For large plates and the epitome of autumn fare, dine on Pumpkin Seed-Basil Pesto and Grassfed Beef and Pork Bolognese over Zucchini Noodles. The Braised Grassfed Beef Short Rib is served with Roasted Butternut Squash and the Grass-Fed Bone-In Ribeye has a pasilla chili rub with avocado butter and duck fat Sweet Potato Fries as well as Spinach.

    MOLLY PITCHER INN

    The Molly Pitcher Inn, 88 Riverside Ave., Red Bank, presents a dining room that boasts panoramic views of the Navesink River. The extensive fall menu ensures a dish for everyone to wow you as much, if not more than, the views.

    The Roasted Golden & Red Beets appetizer is comprised of baby arugula, ricotta and spiced pumpkin seeds. Warm up with the Atlantic Chowder made with lobster, potatoes, sherry-corn chowder and basil.

    The Mr. Barry Seasonal Salad starts with Baby Mixed Greens, Bartlett Pear, Cambozola cheese, Candied Pecans and topped with a champagne vinaigrette. The Maryland Crab Cakes are made with julienne carrots, beets, celeriac and finished with a citrus vinaigrette.

    For entrees guests can choose from delectable meat or seafood dishes. The Slow-Roasted Lamb Shank is served with a Butternut-Potato Hash, sun-dried cranberries and lamb jus. The Grilled 10 oz. Filet Mignon comes with Honey Nut Squash, Autumn Risotto, King Oyster Mushrooms and sage jus.

    The Seared Diver Sea Scallops are served with apple-celery salsa, Fresno chili, caramelized ham broth and crispy ham. The Delicata Squash Crusted Grouper comes with Autumn Risotto, tarragon emulsion, brown butter vinaigrette. The Grilled 12 oz. Berkshire Pork Chop comes with Brown Butter Caramelized Pear, Baby Brussels Sprouts, Pickled Blackberries and autumn spiced jus.

    GRAZE

    Graze, 151 Markham Place, Little Silver, has global influences and a passion for local camaraderie and are committed to telling you a story, according to the website. Chef and owner Laercio “Junior” Chamon was born and raised in Brazil and his passion for cooking and 19-year experience bring you Graze’s divine dishes.

    Pork Belly Mac and Cheese starts off with Braised Berkshire Belly and Pan-Seared Sea Scallop as well as Cider Poached Carrot and Pearl Onion. The Bone Marrow dish comes roasted with toast points and jam. The Goat Cheese and Walnut Salad starts with field greens and is topped with peppered apples, candied walnuts, orange segments and fried goat cheese and drizzled with balsamic and olive oil.

    The Organic Fried Chicken is sous-vide chicken with Braised Cabbage in an Apple Cider Cranberry Stuffing. The Organic Salmon is pan-seared organic salmon served with Butternut Squash Risotto, Mushrooms and red wine butter.

    The Butternut Squash Pappardelle is sauteed with cajun cream sauce, pearl onions, peas, roasted peppers, zucchini and herbs topped with grana padano and guests have the option to add house-made Pumpkin Pasta to the dish. The Short Rib Gnocchi is Parsnip Gnocchi with Braised Black Angus Short Ribs, caramelized onions, asparagus and creme fraiche.

    The dessert menu offers a Classic Brownie served with Vanilla Ice Cream and Chocolate Syrup as well as Wild Berry and Hibiscus Creme Brulee. Beignets are house-made in powdered sugar with a local honeycomb pastry cream.