Another rainy Saturday night made tolerable by a visit to another nice South Jersey BYOB. This time it was Kunkel’s Seafood and Steakhouse located on Kings Highway in Haddon Heights. It looked like our 8 person dining group was going to have to find another spot as I was originally told they could only accomodate 6 people but a last minute plea secured us a nice round table in the corner of this nicely decorated restaurant. Kunkle’s is owned and operated by John and Carol Kunkel and it has the look and feel of a family operation. They have a piano in the front near a warm fireplace and offer live entertainment on Friday evenings. This was my first visit to Kunkel’s. Joe and Carol B. had been there before and liked it on previous occasions.
We had the pre-requisite warm bread with a balsamic and oil dip and split three appetizers as the four couples studied the extensive menu. It’s always fun when there are a multitude of entrees that you would enjoy, but sometimes it’s just easier to find only one or two items. Our crowd this night was having trouble with selecting and a couple of them passed while the waitress stood poised with pen in hand.
Joe B and I split the Spicy Thai Calamari, others had the bruschetta and Carol and Barbara had the butternut squash risotto. I liked the calamari, it was tender and the Thai spice was tasty if just a bit on the “hot” side. The bruschetta had a fresh tomato topping with a splash of balsamic dressing and Barbara declared that she could have had the butternut squash as an entree and been quite content.
My wine for the evening was the 2008 Owen Roe, Sharecropper, Pinot Noir. It was good but it’s made by the same folks that make another of my favorite low-priced pinots, the O’Reilly. At $10.00 less, I think the O’Reilly is a better buy.
After careful study we were ready to select our dinner entrees. Three of us chose the
Braised Short Ribs
braised boneless short ribs, served
with butter-nut squash & sautéed
spinach topped with Bordelaise sauce
I almost went with the catfish and Shrimp but changed my mind at the last minute and went with the
12oz Pork Chop grilled
then served over pineapple and sweet
potato smashed, drizzled with a
sherry honey glaze 23.50.
Tom went with the almond crusted tilapia served on a bed of herbed rice and Jerry also ordered from the fish column choosing the salmon over root vegetables with a Dijon topping.
Everyone seemed pleased with their choices. My pork chop was very good but I had one eye on Barbara’s Chicken Marsala. It seemed to me that I had ordered some form of chicken my last 5 or 6 dinners so I wanted to break away from the poultry for a change.
We were celebrating two birthdays on this night. My wife, Kathy, and our friend, Jerry had both had their 29th birthday for more than the second time.
We had a little dessert to celebrate the occasion and sang Happy Birthday to them. After two hours of wine, food and conversation the rain had ceased and it was time venture home. The consensus was that Kunkle’s was a BYOB that we would not mind paying a return visit to in the future.