Sherban’s Diner

Last week, the owner of New Jersey and I met up at the Sherban Diner in South Plainfield.  We’ve both been to most of the diners in Somerset and Middlesex Counties, so Sherban’s was one of the few we haven’t been too.

We met up around 6 pm on a weekday. There were only a few people in the restaurant.

Her website, New Jersey Isn’t Boring, has opened my eyes to so many different things the state has to offer.  If you ever venture off of the turnpike, I highly suggest you check out her website.

Atmosphere: B
Sherban’s Diner has an older atmosphere too it.  Not in the traditional old dining car way but it is in an older building with an older design to it.  It was clean, and there was nothing bad about it, but it could use a remodel.  It reminded me of a casual “mom and pop” restaurant.

Sherban's Diner

Service: C
When we arrived at Sherban’s, there were only three other parties in the restaurant.  After waiting several minutes for a waitress to come over, a waitress asked if anyone had helped us.  We said no, and she said she guessed she would do it.  She didn’t come around often, and I felt as if I was begging for drink refills.  She also never asked if we wanted dessert and assumed we did not. It took another 10 minutes for dessert.

Coffee: B
There was nothing unique about the coffee flavor.  I did like the cute tea mugs they used.

Sherban's Diner

Food: C
When I arrived at Sherban’s Diner, I wasn’t that hungry.  They had several options.  I knew the “cucumber salad” was one of their signature dishes, so I ordered it, and honestly, there was nothing interesting about it.  It wasn’t bad, but it wasn’t unique or interesting.

Sherbans Diner Cucumber salad

I also ordered the “famous” Greek Salad with chicken.  The salad didn’t come with anything unusual. I don’t know why the menu states it is as: famous.  It was one of the most boring salads I’ve had.  Plus, they didn’t give any pita bread with the salad.  It might be the first Greek salad without pita I’ve had. Sherban's Diner

I ordered the Greek bread as a side which was honestly my favorite part of the meal.  Sherban's Diner

Dessert: C
I ordered the Coconut cake as a dessert to go.  The actual cake was dry, but the whipped cream frosting was good.  The shredded coconut was overpowering.  The cake was decent but once again, it wasn’t that unusual.

Sherban's Diner

Sherban's Diner

Price: $$$
For my cucumber salad, Greek salad, bread, cake, and coffee the cost was $25.  Honestly, it wasn’t worth the price at all.  Something I found entertaining, is they charged 25 cents for a to go box.  Sherbans diner recipt

I’ve never been charged for a to go box before.  Was the price worth the meal? No.

Summary/Would I come back?
Sherbans Diner wasn’t anything to write home about. It wasn’t terrible, and everything was edible. However, it isn’t somewhere I would go out of my way to go too.  In fact, personally, I probably won’t be back.  You have to take the good with the bad, though.

I had a great time catching up which was the important part to begin with…You can see Cyd’s review here.

Summary:
Atmosphere: B
Coffee: B
Service: C
Food: C
Dessert: C

Overall:C
Questions for you:
Have you ever been charged for a to go box? 
Do you like coconut cake?

Hiking the Delaware Water Gap

As I mentioned in a post earlier, hiking has been something my husband, and I have both gotten into recently.  New Jersey isn’t the state you think of when thinking of great hikes but there are a lot of different fun and exciting trails we’ve taken.

I first got into hiking when I was completely injured from running.  Hiking made me feel healthy and strong.  Even though I’m healthy again, my husband and I are still enjoying the adventure of hiking.

Earlier in the week we drove up to the Delaware Water Gap in north west, New Jersey.  It’s one of the furthest points from our house and took about 2 hours to drive.  We wanted to hike to Sunfish Pond.

Sunfish Pond is a glacial lake formed from the last ice age.  It took us about 4 hours for the entire hike.

This is always a welcoming sign:

bear county

After hiking about 3 miles, almost completely up, we made it to the top of the mountain.  It was a gorgeous view over the Delaware Water Gap and we could see into Pennsylvania and New Jersey.

hiking sunfish pond view

We continued along the trail to get to Sunfish pond.  The pond was well worth the hike.

hiking sunfish pond 1

sunfish pond

t and i

We spent a little while out there and headed back home.  Since it has rained recently, there were a lot of small waterfalls and creeks.  Last time we hiked, most of the falls were dry!

hiking sunfish pond

Other Hiking Related Posts:
Hiking the Hollywood Sign
Hiking to Hemlock Falls
Hiking at Bear Mountain Park (Getting Lost)
Hiking Bear Mountain Part 2

Questions for you:
Do you enjoy hiking?
Is it flat or are there mountains where you live?

Time to Eat Diner

A few weeks ago, Caitlin and I met at the Time to Eat Diner.  The Time to Eat Diner has been on my to-do list for a while.  I’ve heard it’s good plus who can argue with that name?  Out of all of the names, “Time to Eat” is in the top.

When in doubt, I will close my eyes. But don't worry, Chelsea looks great
When in doubt, I will close my eyes. But don’t worry, Caitlin looks great

Atmosphere: A
The Time to Eat Diner is located in Bridgewater, NJ after a semi-confusing roundabout.  It’s modern, clean and has been plenty of parking.

The inside is spacious with plenty of seating. You walk in next to a large bakery case. It’s clean as well which surprisingly has been an issue lately.  We were lucky to sit in a booth towards the front.

Coffee: A 
The coffee was great and had plenty of whipped cream.  The only thing missing was more coffee.

Time to Eat Diner

Service: B
The waitress was friendly, and the food was brought out quickly.  It might have been the fastest I’ve ever received food.

Food: B
It was exceptionally hot that day, and I was craving something cold.  I had only run half an hour but I sweat so much, and I didn’t want any hot food.  I ordered a Mediterranean salad.

Originally I wanted salmon, but they informed me they couldn’t do that, and so I stuck with the chicken.  When the salad came out, I was confused about whether it was chicken or salmon.  Both Caitlin and I stared at the chicken trying to figure it out: was it chicken?  Was it fish?

It was the fishiest looking chicken I’ve ever seen.  That being said the salad was filling, and there was plenty of chicken. When I ate it, it tasted normal, and I have no complaints.  I wish there were more mixed greens, but the salad was good.

Time to Eat Diner

Cost: $$
For my salad and coffee, the cost was $15. It was more expensive for the amount of food, but it was a good meal.

Summary/Would I come back?

I liked the Time to Eat Diner.  The meal was good, and there were plenty options.  It wasn’t the best diner, but it wasn’t the worst either.  It as odd they couldn’t add salmon, but that’s how it goes.

Atmosphere: A
Service: A
Coffee: A
Food: B
Cost: $10-20

Overall: A

Question for you: What’s the restaurant with the coolest name you’ve been too?

The Six Brothers Diner

About two months ago I drove by The Six Brothers Diner in Little Falls, NJ.  When I drove by, I thought it was a fancy restaurant, but quickly realized it was a diner.  I moved it to my to-do list, but since I have about 100 diners on the immediate list, that doesn’t mean a lot.  Plus the Six Brothers Diner is about 90 minutes from my house.  I don’t mind driving around the state, but I generally save those diners for when I’m already up North.

Six Brothers Diner
Incase there was any question, they are open

In this case, my husband and I were hiking at Hemlock Falls, and since we were close by, we opted to finally try the Six Brothers Diner.

Atmosphere: A 
The Six Brothers Diner is huge. It looks like it could easily sit 500 people and host a banquet.  It’s got large windows, and it’s open and spacious.  The inside has multiple rooms, a bar, and a dessert case.  The inside is one of my favorite modern diners because there is so much room.  I don’t feel like I’m violating anyone’s personal space.

Service: C
Six Brothers Diner wasn’t crowded. However, our waitress was barely at our table.  When we asked for drink refills, it felt as if we were bothering her.  Maybe she was doing something in the back, but there were about 15 other people in the entire restaurant and she never appeared to be busy.  Appearances are deceiving, though.

Coffee: C
The coffee wasn’t fantastic, but it wasn’t bad either. It was simply average. I wish the cup was larger, or I had more refills, but it wasn’t bad. I have nothing interesting to write about it.  The table backdrop is unique.

Six Brothers Diner

Food: A
After a less than stellar, start to our meal the Six Brothers Diner shines at food.  The menu is huge and has plenty of different options. They have all day breakfast, multiple burgers and an entire page dedicated to salads.  Recently I’ve gone to a few diners that do have all day breakfast.  Isn’t that a traditional diner staple?

After six miles of hiking, I was starving and ordered: “The Brooklyn Burger” with sweet potato fries. It was a cheeseburger with an entire layer of mozzarella cheese.  The burger was cooked perfectly.  I enjoyed the crunchiness of the sweet potato fries as well.  I’ve never had a mozzarella cheeseburger before, but it was good.  The sweet potato fries were good.

Six Brothers Diner

Cost: $
For the burger and coffee, the cost was $15 which wasn’t inexpensive, but it also wasn’t expensive either.

Summary/Would I come back? 
The Six Brothers Diner was good.  The quality of food was high too, and if I were in the area again, I would come back.  Based on the service when it was empty, I would try and come on quiet days, or you might be there for hours.

Summary:
Atmosphere: A
Service: C
Coffee: C
Food: A
Cost: $12-20
Overall: B 

Questions for you: 
What is your favorite type of French fry?
Have you ever been to a restaurant with its own wine cellar? 

Suburban Diner

Suburban Diner
A few weeks ago I was in North Jersey around lunch. It was the perfect excuse to try another diner. I browsed the internet to see which diners were the closest and decided upon the Suburban Diner.  Anytime you go to a diner for brunch on a weekend, you know it’s going to be crowded. When we arrived, they said it would be about a ten-minute wait. It the 113 diners I’ve been too, I’ve only had to wait twice. Ten minutes ended up being two and we were quickly seated.

suburban diner

Atmosphere: B
The outside of the diner was modern with plenty of parking. It draws your attention in from the main road. The inside is modern and spacious. The diner is centered around the bar. They have a unique mix if high and low tables as well as booths and counter space. However, the walls of the diner were noticeably dirty with smeared food on the wall.

suburban diner

Coffee: A
The coffee was hot, fresh and constantly refilled. It was good, and I have no complaints.

suburban diner

Service: A
Everything about the service was excellent. We were sat quickly after arriving; our orders were taken quickly, and the food came out quickly too.  Unlike the diner last week, the food came out quickly.  This would even be considered fast service for an empty diner but it was more than impressive since every table was being used.

Food: A
Since we arrived around 11, I was still in breakfast mode. The Suburban Diner has breakfast, lunch, and dinner at any time. I decided to order something I haven’t seen at a restaurant before. “The Orginal bowl.” The bowl contained potatoes, cheddar cheese, bacon, avocado and I ordered over hard eggs. All of the ingredients were mixed into one giant bowl.  It reminded me of garbage plates in Rochester.  Everything tasted good and I enjoyed the ingredients blended together.  It was a unique but delicious menu item.

suburban diner

Dessert: A
While walking by the dessert case, the red velvet cookie caught my eye. The cookie was dense and huge. I saved it for my hike later in the day.  Honestly, the cookie by itself was great, but it also gave me energy mid-hike.  My only complaint was it did taste like a giant red sugar cookie versus red velvet.  That being said, it was a good cookie and kept my energized during the hike.

suburban diner

suburban diner

Cost: $
For the coffee, eggs, and cookie the cost was $12.  That’s extremely cheap for the amount of food I received.

Summary/would I come back?
I enjoyed the Suburban Diner, and I would definitely go back.  There wasn’t anything I disliked.  It has great food, quick service and presentable.  In fact, it’s in my top 10 diners in the entire state.

Summary:
Atmosphere: B
Coffee: A
Service: A
Food: A
Dessert: A
Cost: $12-20
Overall: A

Questions for you:
What’s the fastest service you’ve received?
What is your favorite type of cookie?

Month of July

Month of July Training:

Total Mileage: Roughly 150
Range of pace: X-11 minute (mostly untimed)
Races: 1
Run for the Hill of It
Workouts: 0
Cross-Training Sessions: 11 (swimming and elliptical)
Core Sessions: 16

Thoughts:
For obvious reasons, July was a much better month than June. I was able to consistently build up my mileage.  It’s only been 10 weeks since my injury but I’ve missed running a lot.  I don’t have any complaints with this month of running but I would much rather be running consistently without hesitation.

Me running

My last few months have been boring but every month can’t be the best or most exciting training wise.  Even though I know that, when you are personally dealing with getting back into running, it’s not any easier.

I did do a lot of Hiking:
I enjoyed hiking because I was able to get outside and explore without feeling hurt or injured.  It was something my husband and I could do on the weekend instead of going to a race. I didn’t know I enjoyed hiking that much until this month.
Hiking Hemlock Falls
Getting Lost at Bear Mountain State Park
Going Back to Bear Mountain State Park (and not getting lost)

hiking bear mountain

My Single Race:

I wrote about that yesterday but I’m pleased with it!

Run for the Hill of It

Thoughts for August:
I’ll continue to slowly increase my mileage and jump into a few races.  I don’t have any races in mind but I’ll find a few.  If I can successfully continue to build a base, I will look for a fall goal race.  I don’t plan to add any speed work yet.  I would rather run 40-50 miles with no hesitation, worry or pain.  After that, I’ll begin adding workouts.

Posts from this month:
How to Become a Morning Runner
How to Come Back Stronger from an Injury

Shoe Reviews:
Asics Cumulus
Mizuno Wave Enigma 6

Personal:
A Day in the Life

Questions for you:
How was your month of July?

Hiking Hemlock Falls

As you can probably see, my husband and I have been trying to explore the state of New Jersey more.  Last week we went hiking and the week before, we flew to Northern New Jersey.  hemlock falls 5

While we don’t have any plans to move soon, you never know what could happen.  I want to leave knowing I’ve explored the state. Plus, without running races, I’ve needed something to fill that space.  To be honest, I miss racing, and I’ve wanted to stay busy too.

hemlock falls 8

Last week we went up to Hemlock Falls in what is considered “Central New Jersey.”  It’s further north, but technically the state boundary lines consider it Central.  The debate of New Jersey is a post for another day, and probably one I have no business sticking my head into.

hemlock falls 7

With that, we went hiking.  The Hemlock Falls Trail is roughly 6 miles long.  We got lost a few and took several detours, so it ended up being about 6.5 miles for us.  My ankle wasn’t bothering me during the hike which I was happy about.

NYC is through the bushes
NYC is through the bushes

Many people don’t realize how beautiful and scenic New Jersey is.  The State is known as “the Garden State” and there are plenty of gardens, nature and scenery to view.  I promise we aren’t all turnpike, pollution, and traffic.

hemlock alls 2

There wasn’t a lot of water trickling through the falls last week, so we were able to walk around on the banks.  My husband is more adventurous than I and climbed to the top.  Since I can barely run in a straight line, rock climbing was not in the cards for me. hemlock falls 6

Afterwards, I left exhausted. Hiking is tiring and a hard workout. It was my only workout that day, but I was the most tired.

hemlock falls 8

Questions for you:

Have you ever been hiking?  Do you have any New Jersey/PA/Delaware recommendations? 

What are some fun hobbies you like to do?