Open late Fri.-Sat.
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Ursino Restaurant Review: Ursino is classy in more ways than one: there’s its location nestled within Kean University’s STEM Science and Technology Building; and the airy, modern design with views through a two-story glass wall facing a fountain and garden. Add to the list imaginative and inventive menus based on local, sustainable foods and produce grown in the restaurant’s own 4.5 acre farm. The menus change frequently but the one constant is executive chef Peter Turso’s skilled technique and respect for freshness and flavor. Organic kale salad arrives verdant with young lacy kale --- delicate and slightly sweet --- intermixed with kohlrabi, red onion and golden beets, and dressed with a sweet balsamic vinegar emulsion. Rigatonette, a generous pasta offering, is made with late-harvest eggplant, roasted tomatoes, capers, black olives and ricotta. In addition to entrées such as Long Island crescent duck and scallops from the fishing boats at New Jersey’s Viking Village, there are wood-fired pizzas notable for an irresistible aroma that wafts from the oven and the sometimes unusual toppings as those on “The Alexander” spread with roasted red bell pepper sauce that beds Asiago cheese, roasted garlic, spinach and olives. The wine list is well chosen to match the cuisine with many options available by the glass. Desserts tempt with a beet crème brûlée, pretty and silky in pink, accompanied by spiced apple raisin chutney and a fromage blanc macaroon. Service is fine and friendly.