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“A Diamond with Some Rough Edges”
Review of Ursino - CLOSED

Ursino
Price range: $31 - $50
Cuisines: American
More restaurant details
Restaurant details
Dining options: Reservations
Dining style: Casual Elegant
Cross street: Green St.
Transit: The NJ Transit Raritan Valley rail line stops at Union Station on Morris Avenue, a 10 minute walk from the restaurant.
Description: The name Ursino was inspired by the rich history of the colonial era Liberty Hall Estate (previously called Ursino), located on what is now part of the Kean University campus. The estate boasts a 4.5 acre farm, from which we harvest many of the ingredients used on our menu. Chef Peter Turso and his staff use these ingredients to create a menu that embraces Modern American cuisine. We also support local producers as much as possible; not only in our menu selections, but in our wine, beer and cocktail offerings too. Our goal is to provide a memorable, quality dining experience for every guest that arrives at our door. With knowledgeable and attentive service, along with expertly prepared food second to none, we aspire to be considered by our guests as one of the top restaurants in New Jersey.
Reviewed April 27, 2012

The food, service and setting were amazing. This is a restaurant for foodies, with a setting that can make it right for special occasions. With some polishes, this will be the bookend to Rat's -- a wonderful and special setting in central NJ.

However, the night we were there, a large and loud party seated in the center of the restaurant made it impossible to hear or speak anywhere else in the restaurant. WIth an apparent unused private dining area in the back, the restaurant should have dealt with this situation. The greeter was also not particularly welcoming. These issues can easily be dealt with.

I look forward to Ursino maturing into a diamond.

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Thank Often_on_road
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviews (67)
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62 - 66 of 67 reviews

Reviewed April 23, 2012

Gorgeous entrance with the bar on the entrance level and the restaurant down a flight of stairs. Very chic design yet comfortable. All the staff were so friendly and attentive. I received a confirmation call to verify our reservation 2 days prior; very professional.
The food was fabulous. The spring pea soup was like none I've ever tried; sweet peas with smoked pancetta sliced razor thin on top to garnish and add that little bit of ham taste. Short ribs were tender with a sauce that was perfect. Gave the table a selection of 4 different types of bread all excellent - Crunchy crust and soft airy insides for one selection, whole grains for another, an onion accented for a 3rd and an olive accented for a 4th. Bread served with a hummus/oil side which was delicious.
Interesting wine selection. The manager chose not your run of the mill name brands so it was very interesting to select from. We tried a NY state red which was very good.
Staff were so friendly, yet so professional and well trained. They knew their menu and their restaurant and were so proud and excited to share with the guests.
Would recommend this venue for friends, business, solo and couples. A little formal for young children and a bit pricey to go very often. But save up and try this gem.
PS - This is not a "student" experiment or a learning center of the University. This is a fully independent restaurant run by professionals, that purely leases space from the school.

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1  Thank CentralNJlady
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed March 19, 2012

Six of our party of 8 had arrived. When we ourselves did, the young woman at the podium looked at her computer screen and appeared to be matching name to resv. While we ordered a drink in the lounge area,awaiting the arrival of the last couple, first the woman and then the male restaurant manager approached the reservation maker...Sorry but they would not be able to seat us tonight!!! Resv had been made and confirmed! Oh you were waitlisted [word never used] . They didnt seem to be able to explain this situation, They covered the round of drinks and sent over a basket of bread and a bar pie,odd combo. I've heard that the food is good here....but we will never find out. An unacceptable resolution.

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Thank PaulaJK
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed March 3, 2012

Who would have thought this wonderful farm to table restaurant was hidden in Union NJ's Kean University campus? The restaurant is a bit hard to find but definitely worth the effort. Every dish features local ingredients, the menu is innovative and provoking, combining some common and rather uncommon foodstuffs. Chanterelle mushroom risotto with foam, shortribswith horseradish dumplings, locally made charcuterie and cheeses, even a stout beer icecream with chocolate pretzels and bourbon sauce. It was nuts.
I am making this a definite repeat visit. Every week are new creations and favors. The decor and the view are spectacular.

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1  Thank atl_mermaid
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed February 29, 2012

This venue offers so much luxurious flexibility that once you have been there it seems to be the right place to go for every occasion. While the vibe is trendy and upscale the staff makes it warm, accessible and inviting. A perfect mix for fabulous handmade cocktails in the gorgeous bar or seated downstairs in the dining room with lots of open space and a great view.

We had a delightful lobster bisque to start and it was brimming with flavor and absolutely no off flavors that occasionally accompany a fish dish. Entrees were an organic chicken which was the way chicken is supposed to taste. Moist, flavorful and a good crisp. The handmade cavatelli with short rib and sugar pumpkin was a beautifully constructed dish that could easily become a habit.

Service is attentive and not intrusive.

Desserts were really great. An apple composition atop a farina cake and a chocolate fondant with ice cream. Coffee is extremely important to me in a meal. This was topped off with a great cup of coffee.

Happy Hour looked very interesting and I'm headed back to see how good it is.

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Thank Susan H
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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