When a friend mentions a new restaurant they like, I’m listening. When another friend in the very same week mentions the same restaurant, I am intrigued. And, finally, when a third friend in the same week mentions Mixx in Manasquan and what a wonderful meal they had, it’’s time Jersey Bites payed a visit.
Mixx opened in June on Main Street in Manasquan. I had heard that there might be a wait on the weekends, so I made sure my very inpatient butt got there on a Thursday night. No wait and we were seated right next to a big window overlooking the street with tables lining the sidewalk. All that natural lighting was perfect for picture taking as you can see here. The dish on the left is the Orange & Curry Spiced Sea Scallops which my dining companion and partner in crime said was fantastic. (I’m allergic to scallops so you’ll have to accept second hand reviews on this. )
One of the most attractive things about the menu at Mixx (besides the very reasonable prices) is the selection of interesting “small plates” as well as the traditional “large plates” or entrees. Of course, we wanted to try everything (and we gave it the ol’ college try as you will see) but we will be back to try the other half of menu very soon.
I had heard wonderful tales of their Heirloom Tomato Risotto and had assumed it was an appetizer but didn’t see it on the menu. I found it under their pasta section for $14.95. Since there were many other things I wanted to try I made a request for an appetizer portion, which they happily obliged. The rumors were true, much to our delight. This dish is heaven in a bowl my friends. We were told that each cherry tomato is blanched and hand peeled. Now that’s a job from hell.
Our next dish was the Kaluha Pig Lettuce Cups off of the “small plates” menu. As you can see, the presentation at Mixx is as important to the chef as taste. I really appreciate the fact that I was able to enjoy some delicious pulled pork minus the roll especially after a bowl of risotto.
If these two starters weren’t enough, the waiter brought us a bowl of the Sesame Coated Edamame to try which was a nice new take on the typical bowl of salted Endamame. The chef coats the steamed pods with sesame oil, red Hawaiian sea salt and black and white sesame seeds. (I’m trying this one at home, don’t tell)
By this point we were pretty stuffed, but in the name of all things yummy, we soldiered on to the “large plates” section. As I mentioned, Peter had the Orange & Curry Spiced Sea Scallops ($18.95) and I was told that the Mustard Cured Grilled Pork Chop with grilled peaches was a favorite. Who am I to question the masses, pork chop me. I would show you a picture of the pork chop but as it turns out, I am a lousy pork chop photographer. You’ll just have to use your imagination. Both dishes were excellent. My pork chop was served with perfect mashed potatoes and the grilled peach was a nice California touch.
Dinner behind us, we just had to take a peek at the dessert menu, simply for research of course. (The sacrifices I make for you people.) We decided on two desserts that sounded extraordinary. Warm Pecan Crumble Peach and Blueberry Crisp with Blueberry Ice Cream and the Cloud Nine Beignets with Cappuccino Dipping Sauce. I really don’t think I need words after these pictures.
The Jersey Girl responsible for this fabulous meal is Chef Tricia Tracey. Tricia was born and raised in Northern New Jersey. The youngest of six children, Tricia began cooking at home while still a teenager where she discovered a natural love for food. She worked in resta
urant kitchens during high school where she decided that culinary training should be her next step. Chef Tracey attended Johnson and Wales University where she received an Associates Degree in Culinary Arts and a Bachelors Degree in Food Service Management, respectively. To learn more about Chef Tracey’s culinary adventures in San Francisco and what brought her back to her home state click here.
As we waddled out of Mixx, my companion’s comment sums up our experience perfectly. “I can’t wait to come back to try more.” Definitely the sign of a great experience. We’ll be back, once we can button up our pants.
Mixx American Bistro
152 Main St., Manasquan