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8 Comparable To Michelin Star Restaurants in New Jersey

The skyline and Atlantic Ocean in Atlantic City, New Jersey.

8 Comparable To Michelin Star Restaurants in New Jersey

Despite being just across the border from the bountiful Michelin-starred city of New York, the Michelin Guide doesn’t cover the state of New Jersey. Still, there are some truly deserving-of-a-Michelin Star restaurants in New Jersey. Another major culinary award is the James Beard Award.

Starting in 1991, this award is decided by a committee and two rounds of judging. There are many different categories in which chefs and restaurants, as well as their owners, can qualify. In 2022, four New Jersey chefs made it to the regional “best chef” semi-finals. And yet another New Jersey establishment earned the honor of the James Beard America's Classic. This award is bestowed upon family-run restaurants open for at least a decade that are integral to their community. 

So, while New Jersey may not have Michelin Stars, that doesn’t bar them from the culinary greats. Between local awards, James Beard honors, and community reviews, all the restaurants on this list represent a fraction of the great food options within the state of New Jersey. Keep on reading to learn about the restaurants in New Jersey that are on par with Michelin Star options. 


37 Crescent Boulevard, Collingswood, NJ 08108

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Sushi Set sashimi and sushi rolls served on stone slate
Sagami serves traditional sushi dishes in their Tokyo-inspired Collingswood restaurant.

©Natalia Lisovskaya/Shutterstock.com

Sagami is a fresh sushi restaurant that has been serving authentic Japanese food since 1974. In 2023, Chef Shigeru Fukuyoshi was a semifinalist in the Outstanding Chef category for the James Beard Awards. The Tokyo-inspired restaurant serves a mix of appetizers, entrées, udon and soba noodles, sushi, rolls, and dessert.

Pick from seaweed salad, tempura, shrimp dumplings, miso soup, enoki mushrooms, and sashimi. Entrées include broiled salmon, chicken shishkabob, fried oyster, and broiled eel on rice. Enjoy warm udon with vegetables or fried bean curd, and numerous fish, seafood, and unique rolled sushi. The dessert options vary by season, but typically include green tea, vanilla, red bean, vanilla, chocolate banana, or rum raisin ice cream, paired with some kind of delicious fruit.


618 Collings Avenue, Collingswood, NJ 08107

Pasta, Rotelle, 2015, Bean, Boiled
Enjoy some delicious pasta dishes when dining at Zeppoli.

©MychkoAlezander/ via Getty Images

Zeppoli‘s own Chef Joey Baldino made it to the semi-finals of the 2023 James Beard “Best Chef” awards. The restaurant is inspired by Sicilian-style Italian cooking and serves within the intimate dining room of its 35-seat BYOB location in Collingswood. Chef Baldino studied at the French Culinary Institute, eventually becoming the Chef De Cuisine at Vetri Ristorante in Philadelphia. He was inspired to create Zeppoli after a stay on a Sicilian farm.

Zeppoli works to highlight the best quality ingredients with intentional preparation. The menu is centered around salads, pastas, entrées, and desserts. Enjoy a salad from their many options to start your meal. They have many pasta dishes available, including spinach and ricotta gnocchi and house-made pasta with lemon. Save room for house-made cannoli and Italian gelato.

Canal House Station

2 Bridge Street, Milford, NJ 08848

Homemade Strawberry shortcake  / Mothers day dessert
One of Canal House Station's seasonal desserts is a delicate strawberry shortcake with whipped cream.


Check out the Canal House Station! This restaurant is co-owned and guided by Chefs Melissa Hamilton and Christopher Hirsheimer. Rave reviews recommend this as one of the “very deserving” of a Michelin Star restaurants in New Jersey. Both chefs were up for the “best chef” category in the 2023 James Beard Awards. The restaurant uses local ingredients to add to its community charm. And it helps that Canal House is nestled in a restored train station from the 1870s, right on the banks of the Delaware River.

They offer special private event bookings, and each Sunday host a family-style dinner. This event is a five-course prix fixe menu that can change weekly depending on the available ingredients. It is $95 per person, $25 for children under 12, and free for children under 5. As we said, it is a family-style meal.

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  • Incredible variety with 10+ weekly meal options, delivered directly to you.
  • Easy to prepare meals ready in 30-minutes or less.
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On their website, you can see a few of the upcoming weeks' offerings. These may include butternut squash with lemon, pork loin cooked in the style of rabbit, and ricotta ravioli. Their rotating dessert menu often features items like fresh strawberry shortcake, strawberry pavlova, chocolate zucchini bread, and candy cane ice cream.

China Chalet

184 Columbia Turnpike, Florham Park, NJ 07932

saliva chicken, mouth watering chicken, chinese sichuan cuisine
China Chalet offers traditional Sichuan Chinese dishes.


China Chalet is a traditional Sichuan Chinese eatery, headed by Chengdu-trained Chef Wei Lu. Lu was also nominated in the “best chef” category of the 2023 James Beard Awards. Located in Florham Park, New Jersey, this restaurant focuses on traditional Sichuan Chinese dishes in a modern and progressive restaurant setting. Their menu encompasses appetizers, poultry, soups, meats, fish, seafood, fried rice, noodles, tofu dishes, and desserts.

The prices are incredibly reasonable for classics like Shanghai spring rolls and chicken with broccoli. Try their Wonton soup, General Tso's chicken, and Kung Pao chicken with peanuts. Chefs specials include sliced conch meat, smoked duck, and crispy sea bass. With so many options to choose from on their menu, you'll have to come back multiple times to try them all!

Steve and Cookie’s

9700 Amherst Ave, Margate City, NJ 08402

Seafood shrimps prawns squid mussels spotted babylon shellfish crab  on plate and dark background / Cooked food served seafood buffet concept
Steve And Cookie's has some of the best bayside seafood offerings.

©Bigc Studio/Shutterstock.com

Steve and Cookie's, a gem of Margate City, New Jersey, has been around since 1932. Serving classic seafood recipes, this restaurant was a semifinalist for the 2023 James Beard Award for Outstanding Hospitality. Open Table named Steve and Cookie's one of the best restaurants in the U.S.

In terms of the menu, try their oysters on the half shell, jumbo lump crab, or steamed littleneck clams. Try their lobster mac and cheese, crispy sushi tuna roll, and butter poached clams for an appetizer. Main dishes feature jumbo lump crab cakes, cold water lobster tail, Kobe beef meatloaf, and a crispy roasted half duck. And that's just a few of the many options at Steven And Cookie's.

Desserts are seasonal. Try their seasonal fruit crisp, crème brûlée, banana cream pie, or fresh fruit plate. And of course, there's always sorbet or Häagen-Dazs ice cream to cool your palette down.

Corinne’s Place

1254 Haddon Avenue, Camden, NJ 08103

Grilled and smoked ribs with barbeque sauce on a carving board
Get your Southern fix in New Jersey at Corrine's Place.

©Elena Veselova/Shutterstock.com

This restaurant deserves special mention. In 2022, Corinne's Place in Camden, New Jersey, earned the James Beard America's Classic Award. The America's Classic Award is only given to six family restaurants nationwide that represent their community and the heart of their cooking. Corine's Place has served soul food to the Camden community since 1989. Corinne Bradley-Powers is the mastermind and community member behind this iconic establishment.

Their menu functions platter-style. Pick your platter, from vegetables to barbeque, meatloaf, chicken, salmon croquettes, and more. Sides include black-eyed peas, potato salad, candied yams, rice and gravy, okra, collard greens, and baked macaroni and cheese. For dessert, simply pick a cake, and Corinne's place probably has it. Enjoy birthday cake, red velvet cake, pineapple upside-down cake, cheesecake, and coconut cake. There's also sweet potato pie, and apple and peach cobbler. Corinne's Place has it all.

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  • 4-serving meals starting at $3.77 per serving (up to 25% cheaper than HelloFresh).
  • Incredible variety with 10+ weekly meal options, delivered directly to you.
  • Easy to prepare meals ready in 30-minutes or less.
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Park Place Café & Restaurant

 7 East Park Ave, Merchantville, NJ 08109

Fresh homebaked artisan sourdough bread. Texture of sliced loaf of bread close up, banner.
Try some of Park Place's rustic bread when you dine here!

©Oksana Mizina/Shutterstock.com

Yet another “best chef” James Beard semifinalist is Park Place‘s own Philip Manganaro. Located right in the heart of Merchantville, New Jersey, Park Place Café & Restaurant works to source local ingredients and pair them with intentional cooking techniques. BYOB and enjoy dishes like fresh-cut pasta noodles, chicken liver pate, rustic bread, and a whole dessert menu you'll have to check out yourself to experience a true culinary gift.

Park Place's menu is subject to change, so make sure you check their website for the latest dishes they're offering! You can also place a call in to the restaurant if you want the most up-to-date info on the food they're offering.

Sweet Amalia Market & Kitchen

994 Harding Highway (US40), Newfield, NJ 08344   

Oysters on stone plate with ice and lemon
Try the locally harvested oysters from Sweet Amalia's.

©Natalia Lisovskaya/Shutterstock.com

And finally we have Sweet Amalia Market & Kitchen, run by Chef Melissa McGrath. McGrath was yet another New Jersey chef up for the James Beard best chef category during the 2023 awards season. Using their own locally-raised oysters and vegetable produce, Chef McGrath crafts a menu full of heart and New Jersey goodness. There's a raw bar, sharing plates, soups, salads, and sandwiches. Try out their garlic roasted pork shoulder, smoked fish chowder, steamed clams, and cabbage and lime coleslaw.

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