Address: 233 Clinton Street, Hoboken, New Jersey
My co-worker Bernie accused me of discriminating against New Jersey food. "Sarah, you don't eat in New Jersey enough! You only eat in New York City!", he complains all the time about my preference for NYC food. It's not that I don't eat in New Jersey area, it's just that most of my friends live in NYC and we usually eat out in the city together. But Bernie is right. I should really spend more time exploring good food in New Jersey - Hoboken, Red Banks, Short Hills and Fort Lee all have really awesome restaurants. We have tried some pretty impressive food in Hoboken, ie La Isla (a cuban restaurant) and The Dining Room at Anthony David's. And on Thursday night, we had dinner at Cucharamama a Latin Bistro in Hoboken, and it totally blew us away!
So I found out about Cucharamama from The Best New Jersey Restaurant issue of New Jersey magazine. We have been loyal customers of La Isla, so we were not interested in trying out other Spanish restaurants in the area. But we'll be going to Cucharamama more often now!
The chef/co-owner, Marciel Priscella picked Cucharamama (CU-CHAH-RAH-MAM-AH) as the restaurant name because it means "Mother Spoon" in Spanish, and the word symbolizes strong women who rules the kitchen with their good cooking. Speaking about strong woman, I also found out that the chef/owner Marciel is also a Spanish culinary historian and a Doctor of Medieval Spanish History. I would be worried if other restaurants try to serve dishes from Argentina, Chile, Brazil, Bolivia, Ecuador, Peru and other countries in South America all at the same time, but Marciel knows her Spanish/South American food. I felt like I've been to South America after eating her food. Another wonderful thing about the restaurant is its cocktail list. Mango Batisdos and Morrir Sonando cocktail?? I'm totally sold!
We would have ordered dessert if not because of Ida Maria's concert. But we were perfectly happy with our orders. We had Choritos en Salsa "Cuzquena" (mussels), Arepas de Choclo (sweet corn arepas) with salmon roe and Venezuelan Crème Fraîche, Crema de fijoles y tomate sazonada (corn and tomato soup) and Bandejita Palsa (for meat lover, a Colombian Highland classic). The Arepas de Choclo was made fresh from the restaurant's wood burning oven, one of the best we've eaten and it goes well with salmon roe. Better than The Arepa Lady's arepas but more pricey. The pork cracklings in Bandejita Palsa dish was freaking amazing. The complimentary flat bread and honey butter itself is worth going to the restaurant. Gan and I will going back to Cucharamama for more deliciuos Spanish/South American food very soon!
Brazilian tropical fruit milk shake spiked with cachaça or rum. cocktail
-- fresh corn cake served with salmon roe and venezuelan creme fraiche - nata
-- white bean and tomato cream perfumed with chilean merken and fresh basil
-- mussels in a spicy sauce of panca peppers, garlic, cilantro, and peruvian dark beer
for meat lovers, Cucharamama's version of the colombian highland classic from antioquia - skirt steak, pork cracklings, colombian sausage, arepa, rice and red beans, ripe plantains, and colombian hot pique sauce