Re:Fink's is coming back! (Northern NJ)
I ate at the new Fink's tonight. I'm going to have to go back for a second visit before I write my formal review (for reasons which I'll outline here) but here's what I have so far:
1) Tried the special appetizer, a chili made from chicken, turkey and duck (and pinto beans). Nicely spicy, a good amount of cumin and garlic. Good start.
2) We ordered a "friedaque" half chicken (smoked, then deeped fried enough to make the skin crispy), and the platter with chopped beef (cubed brisket and rib), pulled pork and spareribs. All were pleasantly smoky, but, from someone who considers Barnstormer to be "just right" (a LOT of people find it to be far too smoky), not as much as I was hoping. Also, there was the same sweet barbecue sauce on everything, although it was by no means drowning in it. Next time, I'll ask for dry (which I should have asked about in the first place); I suspect that I will enjoy it much more. Also, it seems that there are lunchtime specials which I will want to try, some of them very sounding really good (smoked duck, smoked corned beef), and some of them which I would like to take away. Far, far away (smoked spam). And there were some great looking non-smoked items on the menu.
3) Sides: We had corn souffle (NOBODY makes it like Dave Finkelstein, even when using his recipe), cole slaw (nicely understated; you can taste that there is cabbage in there) and rice & black eyed peas (also very good; it needs mixing before you take it, please note).
4) Dessert: We shared a pineapple upside-down cake. Not traditional but warm, moist, with whipped cream and a swirl of caramel on top. Really good.
Price: about $60 with soft drinks ($3.70 for an iced tea!!!!) including tax and before tip.