Is your fam looking to switch up your dining routine? Try stepping out of your comfort zone and taste-testing some of New Jersey’s quirkiest restaurants with crazy decorations, non-traditional menu items, and wacky themes that the kids will love. Explore the taverns of Archetypus Café in Edgewater, eat among the clouds on Breakfast in the Sky in Wildwood, visit with Disney princesses at The Pop Shop in Medford, and many more far out adventures for foodie families.
Add these Quirky Eateries to your NJ Foodie Bucket List:
Visiting the Rainforest Café is truly like stepping into a lively tropical rainforest. With friendly characters, lush forest-themed decor, atmospheric animal and rain sounds, and even volcano-shaped desserts, this family-friendly restaurant is bound to be one of the most memorable for any child who visits. The menu is kid approved and fun; try the Ahi Tuna Tacos and Bamba’s Barbecue Wrap while the littles feast on Jurassic Chicken Tidbits or Castaway Kid’s Pizza from the kids menu.
Locations in Atlantic City and Edison, NJ
Voted “Best Burger and “Best All-Around Restaurant” of 2017, the Chatterbox Drive-In reflects a time where flashy cars and rock and roll were all the rage. This classic American 1950’s style drive-in restaurant offers the best diner food and burger-joint fare around (don’t even think about skipping the Seasoned Curly Fries). Plus, a modern take on this classic menu means families can also pick from a variety of seafood, wraps, and chicken dishes. Jaw-dropping vehicles are always on display indoors and out, and families are always invited to stop by one of their famous car shows, such as Corvette Night and Bike Night.
1 State Highway 15, Augusta, NJ 07822
Enjoy a meal that passes over other New Jersey restaurants – literally! Your family can soar above the Jersey Shore at Breakfast in the Sky, where a meal is prepared especially for you as you enjoy a Ferris Wheel ride with a view. Sip on Freshly squeezed orange juice and dine on a variety of eggs and pastry options, even a shrimp and lobster omelet! This quirky restaurant has even been featured on the travel channel because it offers your family a dining experience unlike anything else.
Morey’s Pier. 3501 Boardwalk, Wildwood, NJ 08260
Related Article: Why You Should Visit Morey’s Piers in Wildwood, NJ
If your family loves all things trains, bridges, and building, stop by this locomotive-inspired family restaurant. This is definitely a restaurant imagined with children in mind. If you’re looking to host a party, drop anchor at the pirate room that’s perfect for your little Jack Sparrow. Choose their glow room for a more intimate experience, or their character party room, filled with your child’s favorite colorful creatures.
140 Atlantic City Blvd., Bayville, NJ 08721
5. White Manna
Featured on Diners, Drive-Ins, and Dives, this is one of the original mini hamburger joints in New Jersey, serving up its classic miniature sliders for almost 80 years. Aside from their perfectly cooked crinkle-cut fries and savory burger toppings, White Manna puts most of the focus on using the freshest meat and daily-cut onions, which is part of what makes these savory snacks so irresistible. What makes this eatery quirky? The photo says it all; since opening in 1939, this Jersey favorite has maintained its vintage burger joint style, and the pint-sized building mirrors the pint-sized burgers they continue to serve happy customers.
Locations in Hackensack and Jersey City
Known for it’s ‘cave seating,’ Café Archetypus is a treat for lovers of Greek culture and food. While the food at this Greek café is delicious, the most exciting part of this eatery is it’s interior, which is themed like an underground cavern. Each party is escorted to their own candlelit cavern and invited to spend a few hours completely secluded from the outside world. With authentic hummus, Garden Pesto, Cilantro Chicken, and to-die-for desserts including fresh-baked brownies and signatures sundaes, this themed restaurant is sure to transport your family to the Mediterranean for a night.
266 Old River Rd, Edgewater, NJ 07020
7. The Pop Shop
At the corner of modern and old-fashioned, you’ll find The Pop Shop: a whimsical, 50’s themed diner for children ages 2 to 92. Take a step back in time and order a milkshake, build your own burger, and indulge in all day breakfast. With two Kids Menus (for ages 12 and under and ages 4 and under), this Kids Menu was awarded “Best Menu in America” by Restaurant Hospitality magazine and features the likes of: Fluffernutter Jr., Green Egg and Jam, Breakfast Sundae, and Miss Mary Mac & Cheese. ‘re a balloon! The Pop Shop also hosts weekly themed meals, such as Disney Week, which is complete with Mickey-shaped pancakes and real Disney princesses that happily visit with the little diners. No matter your age, everyone can enjoy being a kid at The Pop Shop.
1 S Main St, Medford, NJ 08055
Voted one of the top five dinner theaters in America by the Food Network, Elaine’s Dinner Theater in Cape May is a unique way for tourists and locals to enjoy dinner and a show. Located within a restored Victorian Mansion, this historic building is bursting at the seams with charm and character. For kids who love a good ghost story, this building is even rumored to have some friendly spirits walking the halls. With new shows for each season, patrons come for both the entertainment and of course, the food: Barbecue Chicken Flatbread Pizza, Salads, Spicy Buffalo Nuggets, and Chicken Parmesan, are just some of the chef’s home-style dishes that keep the audience full and happy.
513 Lafayette St, Cape May, NJ 08204
Enjoy comfort food and surf + turf immersed in the natural beauty of the Delaware Water Gap National Recreation Area. The Walpack Inn welcomes families into their rustic cabin, with operating fireplaces, antiques, and plenty of warm wood finishes for cozy feels. Your family can eat in an open greenhouse with breathtaking views, surrounded by 70,000 acres of plants, deer, and lush landscapes. Diners often see wildlife peacefully grazing outside their window. Since 1949, this restaurant has been a destination for adventure seekers of all ages. Try their fresh seafood platter, packed with sweet scallops and jumbo shrimp. Kids can fill their bellies with homemade, seasonal fruit pies after their meal. Nature lovers and foodies will feel right at home at The Walpack Inn.
7 National Park Service Rd 615, Layton, NJ 07851
Take a step back in time at this larger than life interactive adventure in Lyndhurst, New Jersey. Step into a castle and cheer on your section’s knight. Your family will feel like a character in their favorite Medieval movie with an up-close and personal view into the world of kings, princesses, and knights. Watch as hawks soar across the arena and knights joust on horseback, all while feasting on a meal fit for any king or queen. After the show, take advantage of photo opportunities with your team’s knight and other realistic characters at Medieval Times.
149 Polito Ave, Lyndhurst, NJ 07071