New Jersey’s Back-To-Back Restaurant Weeks: How Many Is Too Many?

Is it just us or have restaurant weeks become as ubiquitous as department store sales? Don’t know what we mean? Take a look over in Jersey, where Collingswood Restaurant Week ended Saturday and the SJ Hot Chefs’ Fall Harvest Week began the next day. One Collingswood restaurant – we’re looking at you, Alex Capasso – is opting to make one prix-fixe menu do double-duty for the duration.

Okay, to be fair, that one restaurant (Blackbird Dining Establishment) is the only C-wood restaurant to participate in the SJ Hot Chefs consortium. But even though it’s nice to celebrate the local farmer, the independent restaurateur, the bounty of the season and blah blah blah, we’re seriously starting to look at our watches to see when the whole thing reaches a saturation point.

Sure, we know our views are oft viewed as cynical. We know that many of you (especially in Jersey, where it takes a few extra years for trends to arrive) don’t agree that the whole restaurant week concept has jumped the shark (which, we admit, is a phrase that has itself jumped the shark).

So to you Multiple-Restaurant-Week Lovers we say, Harvest Week runs through Fri., Nov. 4 at all participating SJ Hot Chefs restaurants, and four-course menus are priced at either $25 or $35. And to Alex we say, to tell you the truth, Dude, your $35 menu–the one with the sweet potato macchiato with homemade marshmallow and brown sugar, orecchiette carbonara with smoked bacon and parmesan egg emulsion and the caramel chocolate gateau with milk chocolate mousse, caramel sauce and peanut brittle–sounds absolutely incredible. Did our grumpiness  jeopardize our shot at a reservation?

SJ Hot Chefs [Official website]