Because I used to be a food editor, people often ask me for restaurant recommendations, and I can usually give you a good choice no matter if you’re looking for Italian or Indian, in Marlton or Malibu. And it’s not just about suggesting a place that has good food; the experience has to equal what’s on the plate or chances are it won’t be a meal to remember.
Finding a great bar is no different, which is why we spent months devising our first-ever Best Bars list, a collection of what we believe to be the finest places in South Jersey to wet your whistle. We’re talking about the kinds of places where bartenders specialize in mixology and know how to craft a cocktail, not just pour a drink. It took some doing, but we narrowed down our choices to 20 truly standout establishments. In addition to picking 20 superb drinks to try when you get there, we’ve also included which ones are ideal for meetings, happy hour, outdoors, and a separate bar food menu. Finally, we tacked on our picks for the best craft beer bars and the places where live entertainment rules the night. If you’re getting thirsty, turn to Page 62.
And May’s return means it’s time once again for our annual Top Towns roundup, spotlighting the best communities in South Jersey. On Page 72, we unveil this year’s list along with valuable data and information on property values, taxes, crime rates and high school performance. You’ll also hear from North Jersey transplants who have found a home in our neighborhoods, and have a look at the local real estate market and which areas are thriving. While it’s hard to argue which town is truly the best, as civic pride runs deep in these parts, there’s no denying that South Jersey as a whole is a premier place to live, work and play—proving that the sum is greater than its parts.
Peter J. Proko
Published (and copyrighted) in South Jersey Magazine, Volume 11, Issue 2 May, 2014).
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