Blue Point Grill, Princeton, NJ

I had been meaning to check out Blue Point Grill for a really long time, perhaps 2 years, but just never got around to it. I wouldn’t say I have been procrastinating, but every time I would think about going, I’d decide on going somewhere else, usually Witherspoon Grill which I love (here’s my Witherspoon blog http://foodielifestyle.com/2007/12/03/witherspoon-grill-princeton-nj/). I almost went back to Witherspoon Grill instead of Blue Point a few days ago, and I’m really glad I did finally make it here.

Blue Point is highly rated in Zagat’s and well liked by the locals. It’s a seafood restaurant with a very extensive menu. It’s owned by the same team that owns Witherspoon Grill. These guys really know how to build and manage excellent restaurants that deliver consistently great food and service.

Unlike Witherspoon, Blue Point is BYO which wasn’t a problem that night. I had just picked up (actually Lyle did for me), a selection of Australian Cabernet Sauvignon, Arrowood Syrah and Bordeaux from the Wine Library. We decided to go with the Cabernet which turned out to be really good. I’ll write a blog on that later.

The restaurant doesn’t take reservations, but you can call ahead and they’ll put your name on the list. The restaurant was packed with plenty of people waiting for a table. We had called ahead so only needed to wait a few minutes for our table. We were served by an excellent waitress, chatty, bubbly, friendly with really good knowledge of the menu. She did a great job guiding us through the large menu and made excellent recommendations. The wait staff can make the difference between a mediocre and great dining experience, and she just made it better.

We had:

– Jalapeno and andouille sausage calamari  – excellent, probably the best I calamari I have ever had, and I’ve had a lot.

– Scallops wrapped in bacon – perfectly cooked, beautiful taste

– Monkfish medallions – another hit

– Organic salmon special – perfectly cooked fish, just the right amount of seasoning

I did make the mistake of ordering dessert. I am not a huge fan of the desserts at Witherspoon, and both places share the desserts. I did try the chocolate creme brulee. Not good.

The restaurant is relatively small and not as upscale in it’s decor as Witherspoon. It’s actually quite a casual setting, which seems out of line with entrees costing upto $30. Despite that, and thanks to the BYO policy, dinner was only $118 for 3.

Generally Princeton area restaurants seem to have potential but under-deliver in food quality (read my post http://foodielifestyle.com/2007/11/23/princeton-area-restaurants-dont-make-the-cut-except/), however after Blue Point I am starting to develop a better appreciation of the restaurants in the area. I will definately not wait 2 years before I come back.

Here’s a link to the restaurant’s site http://www.jmgroupprinceton.com/divisions/jmdivision5.html

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