The wait is almost over as next week Villalobo’s Restaurant in Montclair will finally open its doors to the public. On Thursday Night Sara and I had the opportunity of attending the Press Walk through and Tasting at Villalobos. Upon arrival the first thing i noticed was the ambiance of the restaurant a blend of urban vibe and chic aesthetic. With reclaimed barn-wood walls, and striking paintings and graffiti from local artists the decor is one of a kind.
The executive Chef and Owner is Adam Rose who is a Native of Nutley, and now resides in Bloomfield. Received his culinary degree from the New York Restaurant School which is now the Art Institute of NYC. When working at Bin 14 Trattoria & Wine Bar in Hoboken Rose earned an “excellent” review from The New York Times.
Chef Rose describes his cuisine as “Traditional Mexican with a modern technique.”. Although he has had no formal training in Mexican cooking his passion. This passion of his is derived from working in various kitchens with his Mexican staff. He came to admire the cuisine and traveled different parts of Mexico where he tasted and learned to make “a rich and true cuisine”
The menu is Taco- driven of classics and street fare but also contains traditional Mexican dishes . The tortillas are organic corn tortillas and are made in house daily. For appetizers we tried the Ceviche Blanco made with jumbo fluke, squash blossom, and fresno chile; Villalobos Guacamole w/ Smoked tomatillos and Sea Urchin and Esquites which was my favorite dish of the night is corn off the cob with crema, cotija and ancho.
We also tried four types of the Inventive tacos these includes:
- Lengua (beef tongue, chipotle, pistachio)
- Cartinas (Cola-braised pork belly, corn, cortija, and ancho)
- Verduras (Poblano, corn, maitake, queso fresco)
- Camarones (Grilled Shrimp, jicama curtido, romaine, cherry tomato salsa)
Dinner Entrees range from $18-$27.00
Villalobos is BYOB however they have must try seasonal drinks on the menu which include house made agua frescas (4 flavors), Mexican sodas, and slushies. I had an Arnold Palmer Slushie spiked with tequila it was a MUST have.
Before you go make sure you save room for dessert. The featured dessert is Churros w/melted chocolate and cinnamon.
*Underneath the food bar there are tips to hang your purse so you don’t have to put your purse on the counter or the floor i thought this was a great touch!
Sara’s POV: Villalobo’s is definitely going to a hot spot for millennials looking for a BYO. The food is delicious and up to par, fit for NYC bred foodies. I loved every taco I tried for different reasons, full of flavors & different textures. The atmosphere is sophisticated yet welcoming. Perfect for a fun night with friends or date night! Bravo Chef Rose!
Villalobo’s is located at: 6 South Fullerton Ave Montclair, NJ 07042
Hours of Operation:
Tuesday-Sunday: 11:00 am – 3:00 Pm
Tuesday- Thursday: 4:30 pm-10:00pm
Friday-Saturday: 4:30 pm-11:30 pm
Sunday: 4:30 pm-8:00 pm