Masina Italian Restaurant: Weehawken, NJ
Same owners as the previous “Harbor Bar” – but changed venue to “Masina Italian…”
Masina Italian Restaurant in Weehawken, NJ
Description: Waterfront bar & restaurant. Outdoor seating, Sunday brunch, late-night menu, breakfast, large capacity, bar seating.
Address: 500 Harbor Boulevard, Weehawken, NJ 07087
Menus: Breakfast – Brunch – Lunch – Dinner – Kids – Takeout
Previous (Harbor Bar) updates after the jump!
Harbor Bar March 2007 Review:
Part of the “get out of Hoboken” series.
My friend and I ventured to review the new “Harbor Bar & Brasserie” at the end of March because we’re frugal and wanted to use the “buy one – get one” coupon that they sent to many residents in the area before it expired at month end.
Like many restaurant reviews on Hoboken411, this one happened at an “off time”, typically between lunch and dinner. I like restaurants less crowded anyway, and it gives you an opportunity if they can provide a quality dish at any time, but doesn’t test the operation “under a heavy load”.
It was around 3pm, middle of the week and the inside was very quiet, with only a handful of other diners. The restaurant, while clean and spacious, and with a dark theme, also had a somewhat “cruise ship” feel to it. Seating was comfortable, which is a plus.
I didn’t feel too comfortable as our waiter came over, introduced himself and asked what we’d like to start out with. He just didn’t come across as too capable. Flat.
We ordered a few appetizers to start with. After reading the initial “fabulous” review in the reporter a few weeks prior, we chose the fried calamari ($10) and the hot artichoke dip ($9).
The calamari was supposed to be some kind of unique variation of a very common dish. With pickled jalapeños and some kind of creamy mayo and marinara sauce. It was pedestrian at best. The peppers were a valiant idea, but had very little kick, and were awkward to incorporate with each forkful. Sauce was bland and uninspiring. Calamari itself was acceptable on it’s own, but nothing you can’t get at most common places.
The hot artichoke dip, with toasted baguettes. Not very cheesy, but had a nice garlic punch to it if that’s your style. The crispy rounds were a bit too crunchy for my taste. Average dish again, will probably not order it again.
Main dishes were spicy pulled chicken with cole slaw ($10) and the seared Mahi-Mahi sandwich ($13). The chicken sandwich looked good, but scored an overall poor score. Good quality chicken, nice presentation, good french fries and fresh condiments. However, the chicken itself lacked ANY flavor at all. A complete waste of time and calories. Truly disappointed for something that had such promise.
The seared mahi-mahi again looked good, came with bacon, tomato, avocado and arugula. A large presentation with average results. The arugula had a obvious and extremely bitter taste that distracted from the other ingredients. The dressing on the side salad also had a suspicious flavor to it. Other than the two noticeable flaws, the rest of the dish was acceptable, but not memorable.
The waiter we had was overall very slow and absent minded. Had to be reminded of several things, and several tables who were seated after us got their orders significantly faster with a different waiter. Maybe it was just a rookie working out the kinks, but it detracted from what could have been a better experience. Another reason our food might have been sub-par is because we overheard that this may not have been the “regular” chef, but didn’t get a straight answer from the waiter.
Lastly, be careful with your thirst. Since this was a non-alcoholic meal, the sodas or teas are quite expensive for the size of the drink. Tiny. For $2 each, and no free refills, you’re better off choosing water as your beverage. Because they’re so small, you’re quite likely to drink 4 or more of them, quickly adding to the bottom line of your check.
What could have been a filling lunch for two at $23 plus tax and tip, ended up being over $40. And that was with a coupon! Without the coupon it would have exceeded $60. So keep that in mind if you’re on a budget.
Will try the place again eventually, because yes, I like to use coupons at places that I’m not too excited about. Another coupon was recently received that expires at the end of May. But as you read here, there is no overwhelming reason to rush back. Will consider it when some nice day comes up.