17 Best Restaurants in Elizabeth, NJ [2023 Updated]

Elizabeth, New Jersey is a beautiful, culturally diverse city in the Northeast part of the state. Nothing represents Elizabeth better than its huge collection of distinctive restaurants.

From Argentina to Zimbabwe, all cultures are celebrated through food in Elizabeth, New Jersey.  Keep reading to find out more about the 17 best restaurants in Elizabeth, New Jersey.


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Valenca began as a small neighborhood bar and grill serving a tiny menu of Portuguese dishes. Over 30 years later, it has grown into a local landmark and treasure of the community.

When the smell of charcoal barbecue is in the air you know Valenca’s is not far. They have grown into a full-scale restaurant and banquet facility, gracing a large portion of the block. They ensure your every desire is met.

Whether it be sitting at the bar watching a soccer game, sitting down to dine with family, or hosting a full-scale party,  you will be delighted. They offer very generous portions of every Portuguese style delight under the sun.

From fresh fish to steak served on a hot stone. They have an amazing list of imported and domestic wines. The homemade sangria is out of this world.

The service is wonderful and you are encouraged to take your time and enjoy your meal. If you’re visiting Elizabeth, New Jersey, Valenca is absolutely the best!



2. Europa Bar and Grill

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625 Westfield Ave.

Elizabeth, NJ


If you are looking for some of the best paella and homemade sangria Elizabeth has to offer, you will find it at Europa. The atmosphere is laid back yet elegant.

The service is excellent and every care is taken to give customers a great dining experience. Europa specializes in seafood but they create amazing beef, chicken, and pork dishes as well.

Depending on your mood, you can enjoy your sizable meal at the bar or their intimate dining area. For larger parties, they offer a private, beautifully designed dining room. For Portuguese- style seafood, Europa is the real deal.



3. Michelino’s Restaurant

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169 Washington Avenue

Elizabeth, NJ


If you’re looking for some of the best Italian food in Elizabeth, zoom on over to Michelino’s. It’s a casual dining spot, where you can get some of the best pizza Elizabeth has to offer.

They have great antipasto salads, pasta galore, and even make a great Mexican fajita. If you still have room after their large portioned dinners, Michelino’s offers tasty desserts like Tiramisu and zeppoles.

You can dine in or take out. They even offer outdoor dining.



4. Rancho Mateo

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27 Westfield Ave.

Elizabeth, NJ


Rancho Mateo is next on our list of Elizabeth’s best restaurants. Rancho is best known for its tenderly prepared steaks and perfectly cooked empanadas.

They also serve other Colombian delicacies like beef toungue in a savory Creole sauce and chicken and rice in garlic sauce. A vast array of Columbian-style seafood is also on the menu.

The service is on point and the decor is a visual delight. Rancho Mateo is definitely the place to go if you are craving authentic Columbian food.




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104 Orchard St.

Elizabeth, NJ


SUDAKA offers traditional Peruvian cuisine. Upon walking through the door, you are met with a fusion of visual art, music, and delightful aromas. The environment is laid back and comfortable.

The vast menu offers something for everyone. Whether you are a lover of seafood, chicken, or beef. Many of SUDAKA’s meals are served in outstanding sauces with hints of lime.

There is always plenty of Peruvian-style yellow rice served on the table.



6. City Tavern

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1109 Elizabeth Ave.

Elzabeth, NJ


If you are looking for a restaurant that’s great for everyone, then head on over to the City Tavern. Whether it’s a quick lunch date with mom, dinner with your significant other, or late night tapas and drinks with friends.

City Tavern can create an unforgettable experience for all. From perfectly prepared plantains to huge pans of Paella, they are sure to satisfy.

The staff is awesome and will happily explain the menu. The drinks are superior and the bar area is a great place to socialize.



7. Brisa’s Bakery and Restaurant

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262 Morris Ave.

Elizabeth, NJ


Don’t let the word bakery in the name fool you. While they do offer everything you would expect from a Columbian bakery, Brisa’s offers a full menu of traditional food. They are best known for their awesome empanadas and skirt steak.

They also have perfectly spiced rice and beans, and Pernil (pork). They also offer a breakfast menu for the early bird.

No matter what time of day, you can satisfy your sweet tooth with homemade tiramisu or flan. Give Brisa’s a try if you want some great food and friendly service. The owner and his wife are always there to greet you!



8. Tropicana Diner

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545 Morris Ave.



Tropicana diner is another Elizabeth landmark. It is a family run business that’s been around for decades.  They very generously give discounts to police, fire, and school personnel.

The diner can accommodate just about any size of party and a fun tropical theme decorates the interior. The staff is always helpful and will happily make meals to your needs and preferences.

You can top off your meal with something from their bakery. All of the baked goods are created on the premises by a pastry chef. Tropicana is a great choice for quick and yummy continental fare in Elizabeth.



9. El Palmar

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532 Elizabeth Ave.

Elizabeth, NJ


El Palmar is a Puerto Rican restaurant in the heart of downtown Elizabeth. They serve traditional island dishes like Mofongo and Carne Guisada. All of the meals are seasoned to perfection.

They are generously portioned. You will get waited on quickly at the counter. Tables are available to dine at. Take out and local delivery is available.



10. Two Brothers

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255 Broad St.

Elizabeth, NJ


Two Brothers is a Caribbean restaurant in Elizabeth. They offer breakfast, lunch, and dinner. It’s great for solo dining or groups. The menu is filled with Caribbean delights.

Some items are oxtail, jerk chicken, and chicken curry. You’ll be served in an intimate mom-and-pop, lunch counter atmosphere. If you want a taste of the islands at an affordable price, Two Brothers is the place.



11. Avenue Grill and Sushi

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155 Elmora Ave.

Elizabeth, NJ


Avenue Grill and Sushi adds to the list of culturally diverse restaurants. They offer kosher meals and sushi made under the supervision of a rabbi. The massive pastrami sandwiches rival any eaten in New York City.

The schwarma meat spread is enormous. The beef brisket is cooked to perfection. A large salad bar is available with all meals. A special treat is their handmade sushi.

There is also a large assortment of Mediterranean dishes, all at a reasonable price. So if you desire kosher in a clean and comfortable setting, visit Avenue Grill and Sushi.



12. Algarve Barbeque

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756 Jackson Ave.

Elizabeth, NJ


There is nothing quite like good Portuguese barbecue. If you’re looking for a GREAT one in Elizabeth, NJ, you will find it in the Algarve Barbecue. Conveniently located right off route 9 highway, Algarve is well known.

The dining room is a bit compact. However, once you sink your teeth into their delicious charcoal meats, your world will open wide. Their specialty is barbecue chicken, which is some of the best in Northern New Jersey.

Whether it’s chicken, steak, or chorizo, everything is grilled to perfection. Heaping portions of rice and  French fried potatoes are served with everything.

Algarve is considered iconic among locals. People come from all over Northern New Jersey to eat here. Definitely add Algarve to your list and see what the fuss is about!



13. Urban Griddle

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460 Maple Ave.

Elizabeth, NJ


Homemade goodness is what you will find at Urban Griddle in Elizabeth. They feature American fare with the freshest of ingredients. They are open every day ( but Sunday), for breakfast and lunch.

Specialty items include small batch craft coffees and brunch cocktails. With its rustic-inspired decor, it’s the perfect place for fun family get-togethers. The owners pride themselves on preparing your food to your specifications.

They use the best ingredients to make sure everything on your table is delicious. The servers are friendly and committed to your happiness.



14. Tequila Bistro

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824 Pearl St.

Elizabeth, New Jersey


Tequila Bistro offers classic Spanish and Mediterranean food at a reasonable price. A beautiful bar takes center stage in the elegant yet casual setting. One of their signature creations is the tasty seafood quesadilla.

It’s stuffed with fresh shrimp, scallops, and cheese. Other popular favorites are marinated chicken wings and the homemade lobster bisque.

The menu has something for all tastes. Sandwiches, salads, and soups are available for smaller appetites.



15. Olga’s Place

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214 Lt. Glenn Zamorski Dr.

Elizabeth, NJ


Olga’s Place is a family-friendly restaurant that offers heaping portions of the best Costa Rican food in Elizabeth, New Jersey. This is a family-owned business, so love and pride are apparent from the second you walk inside.

Cocktails and freshly brewed coffee are always available. The menu offerings include; nachos, clams in garlic sauce, and Costa Rican rice and beans.

It’s a great place for large family celebrations. The staff is friendly and attentive. You are sure to feel special at Olga’s Place.



16. The Garden Restaurant and Lounge

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331 Morris Ave.

Elizabeth, New Jersey


The Garden Restaurant and Lounge is probably the most exciting in Elizabeth, New Jersey. This spot is great for the adult crowd. They combine food, art, and mixology to give patrons a unique dining experience.

Executive chef Adrian Leon has collaborated with famed chefs like Bobby Flay and Douglas Rodriguez from the Food Network. He creates unique dishes with a Latin flare. Brunch at The Garden is well known around town.

Their $20 bottomless mimosas are very popular. The outdoor terrace is beautifully decorated with plants and flowers. It’s a great place to take some selfies so everyone can see you were at one of Elizabeth’s top spots.

The Garden is open until 3 am on Friday and Saturday nights. A deejay is also on duty to top off the fun!



17. Minhoto Restaurant

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851 East Jersey St.


Minhoto Restaurant is an upscale oasis in the middle of the busy city. It combines Brazilian and Portuguese styles to bring amazing dishes to the table.

Specialties include codfish stew, grilled pork strips, and huge platters of rodizio (Brazilian barbecue). They offer homemade sangria and an extensive imported wine list. Definitely save room for one of their homemade desserts.

The dining room has a simple elegance. You can also choose to dine outside on a lovely spacious patio. The staff is attentive and friendly. Minhoto servers never rush you, so take your time and enjoy yourself.




There you have your guide to the 17 best restaurants in Elizabeth, New Jersey. Whether you are looking for upscale fine dining or a quick casual spot.

Elizabeth offers visitors and locals a vast array of cultural cuisines to choose from. These restaurants are sure to give you a delightful dining experience.

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About Restaurant Observer

Restaurant Observer is the ultimate go-to destination on the web when looking for nothing but fantastic places to genuinely enjoy food across the United States. Inspired by the saying when there’s good food, there’s a good life, Birch Restaurant starts the food blog to scout the best food places across the country.