-- Best New Jersey Day Trips - Asbury Park & Ocean Grove (under construction)
-- Restaurants -- Hotels -- Theaters
-- Stadiums/Arenas/Teams -- Historic Homes
-- Battlefields/Military -- Lighthouses
-- Art Museums -- History Museums
Over the years, dignitaries such as Ulysses S. Grant visited the Great Auditorium; other presidents, including Theodore Roosevelt, Woodrow Wilson and Richard Nixon, have spoken there. It also serves as a music venue, hosting acts as eclectic as Peter, Paul and Mary; a Queen tribute band; and contemporary Christian star Matthew West.
sident and owner of the Starving Artist (47 Olin Street), a popular breakfast and lunch spot, says those who go to Asbury Park tend to stay there—although they might take a quick peek across Lake Wesley at Ocean Grove
Asbury Park Is Top Shore Dining DestinationCity by the sea wins 10 categories in 2018 Restaurant Poll.
658 Cookman Avenue
A cache of reclaimed barn wood fashioned into tables, chairs, kitchen islands, bars and flooring. 732-778-4746, asburywoodcraft.com
550 Cookman Aveue
Neutrals rule at this soothing boutique with an upscale nautical vibe. Punches of texture and crisp shades of blue and green keep things interesting at this 3½ year-old shop, whose owner, Sarah Church Brady, offers full design services. Snag fragrant candles, ceramic vases and woven baskets. 732-455-3363; thesaltyhome.com
713 Bangs Avenue
Textiles here are designed from vintage, handwoven hemp and linen and offered as bags, table runners, even shoes. 732-774-4341, patriaestudio.com
601 Cookman Avenue
A true original, this shop is filled with cutting-edge couture fashioned by proprietor Nita Novy. After a 25-year run in Millburn, Nita Ideas moved to Asbury Park five years ago. Novy’s designs are flowing, colorful, avant-garde dresses (mother of the bride is a specialty), tops, pants, skirts and belts. Jewelry is commissioned to complement her collection. 732-988-7711, nitaideas.com
Nine different Asbury Park restaurants accounted for the city’s 10 wins. Asbury Festhalle & Biergartentopped the bar scene and beer selection categories. Other winners in AP were the Mediterranean-themed Reyla (best new restaurant); Toast (breakfast); Pascal & Sabine (French); Taka (Japanese); Cubacan (Latin American); Barrio Costero (Mexican); the Speakeatery (soup/salad/sandwich); and the WindMill (hot dog). The latter also has Shore locations in Long Branch and Belmar.
Like Asbury Festhalle, several Shore restaurants topped more than one category. Winners in multiple categories were Buddakan, Atlantic City (Asian fusion and Southeast Asian/Thai); 410 Bank Street, Cape May (Caribbean/Southern and French); the Turning Point, Long Branch and Sea Girt (breakfast and brunch); and Joe Leone’s Italian Specialties (Italian-style deli and caterer).
In addition to the poll winners, New Jersey Monthly named its Top 30 Best Restaurants for 2018. The Top 30 included two Shore restaurants--Modine in Asbury Park and Poached Pear Bistro in Point Pleasant Beach.
* Pascal & Sabine (seafood, chicken, beef; dinner entrees $28-40, burger $18, also small plates from $16
“Arguably the restaurant that turned the Asbury dining scene around,” Eater.com
* Porta's Asbury Park (former Student Prince bar where Bruce Springsteen met Clarence Clemons, “Arguably the restaurant that turned the Asbury dining scene around,” Eater.com; ranked among 26 best pizzas in US by TastingTable.com;