I knew Wolfgang’s Steakhouse was and is expanding everywhere, both domestically and internationally. But, I was still surprised when I found one in Somerville, NJ, of all places. It is not a metropolitan city, or any kind of major city, really, so it seemed a bit out of the place. Regardless, I had opportunities to visit this location, and I am always up for a good meal, anywhere, anytime. One benefit of having a restaurant in NJ vs. NY is that they get more land. This restaurant was huge, even comes with nice outside seating.
When you enter, you see a pretty good bar area with long bar counter. It is a nice bar, and has lots of seating. The bar goes all the way to the back.
The dining area is really large as well, more than enough to handle crazy amount of people. But, this is outskirts of NJ… We went during the week day, and it was almost empty. I have been there twice during lunch time, both weekdays, and they were not busy at all. Maybe they get busy during dinnertime…
In case you are wondering the connection between Wolfgang’s Steakhouse and Wolfgang Puck, make no mistake, they are two completely different and separate entities. Wolfgang’s Steakhouse was established by Wolfgang Zwiener, who worked at the infamous Peter Luger for 40 years as the head waiter. He opened his own restaurant with the 4o years of experience with his son, and two other waiters from Peter Luger. Naturally, there are some similarities in the menu and style of food, even though they like to be firm about the difference between Zwiener’s steakhouse and Peter Luger’s… However, if you dine at both locations, you will see and taste the similarities. Which is nothing wrong with that, for as long as both are delicious!
As we sat down, they brought out some complimentary breads, which were large and soft. It had baguette and another kind of bread with garlic in it. The garlic bread was really flavorful, soft, airy, and really tasty.
I ordered lemonade, and it was ok. Not too sweet, which was nice, but nothing really special. I feel like I wanted more lemon flavor than it had, maybe it was a bit too watery. It still tasted good enough.
I have been to Peter Luger a few times, and also been to one of the Wolfgang’s Steakhouse locations in Manhattan. I remember how good their bacon was from both places. Their bacon is really thick, more like bacon “steak” than the regular bacon out there. I wanted to order one, but since it is a thick slab of bacon, I didn’t want the whole order. I decided to share it with my colleague, and they were nice enough to bring the pre-cut bacon in half to each of us. The Canadian Bacon ($4.95) was super juicy, flavorful, packed with flavor. It was as good as I remembered.
We didn’t feel like having a steak or red meat on this day, so we ordered Seafood Pasta ($24.95). It comes with clams, shrimp and sea bass with light spicy marinara sauce, served over thin linguine. When it came to the table, I was surprised of the generous portion. It was really huge, I was so happy! It had mountain load of seafood, and had nice amount of pasta hiding underneath it. The sauce was flavorful with a little kick to it, and seafood was cooked just right. The linguine had the right amount of firmness. This dish was a big winner, it was really delicious! And their bread with garlic went perfect with this dish. I couldn’t finish the whole plate, I took about the half of it home. Our waiter, Milo, was really nice and attentive, and he was nice enough to add more of their complimentary bread with my left over to-go bag.
We also had Grilled Salmon ($21.95), which comes with asparagus. This dish also had generous amount of salmon, it was a huge slab of salmon steak! And it was cooked just right, with outside grilled until crispy, yet the inside is juicy, flaky, and soft. Didn’t have crazy seasoning on it so that you can really taste the fresh salmon. The asparagus were cooked until soft, without getting mushy, which is the way I like it. Again, simple seasoning so that you can taste the ingredients. Simple but yet flavorful, and very filling.
I ended the pleasant lunch with a cappuccino, which came with nice creamy foam and dash of cinnamon powder on top. It was a nice way to end the delicious lunch.
On my second visit, I was ready for some meat! I decided to go with their Classic Sirloin Burger ($8.95) with American Cheese ($2) and Bacon ($4.95). It also comes with steak fries and onion rings. Funny thing, everyone else at the table followed my lead and ordered the burger as well. I knew their Canadian Bacon is thick bacon steak, but I thought they will have thinner bacon for burger. I was totally wrong. When the burger was brought to the table, I was shocked to see the thick, fat, bacon steak on top of the burger patty! No wonder they charge $4.95 for the bacon for this burger. The burger ended up being $15.90.
Once I put the lettuce, tomato, onions and pickles on top, it became this humongous giant of a burger. I pondered over how to attach this burger. I decided to cut it in half, and just dive in. The patty was so juicy and flavorful, the bacon as great as ever, and all the veggies were super fresh. It was one heck of an amazing burger. Also, the fries and onion rings were really nice too. They were lightly fried, great flavor, crispy, and addicting. I only managed to eat half of the burger and less than half of the fries, and I took the rest of it home.
They have their own steak sauce at each table, which you can use on anything and everything if you’d like, not just on the steaks. I didn’t use the sauce, but it is good to have the option right on the table if you need or want it.
I ended this lunch with cappuccino again, but this time, it was obviously made by someone else. It didn’t have the same care and love as the first time I visited here. It was just a mess, crazy cinnamon powder just poured onto it. It made me a bit sad. It is always good if you can count on the restaurant to have the same, good consistency of service and quality in everything. The second visit had less quality in service, as we had different waiter, and also in quality when it came to the cappuccino.
It still is a great steakhouse with great food. It is nice to be able to enjoy the Wolfgang’s Steakhouse food without the small, crowded space you get Manhattan. It was more relaxing, quiet, and time passed a bit slower there. Oh, and they have a huge parking area right behind the restaurant! I would like to go back to this location in NJ again for another nice relaxing lunch in the near future!
Wolfgang’s Steakhouse – 119 W Main St, Somerville, NJ 08876