Inside Porter, An Upscale Gastropub New to Weehawken

In case you missed it, Porter, a modern American gastropub recently opened at the ground level of the RiverHouse11 at Port Imperial, a luxury residential community in Weehawken. Located in Port Imperial, central to the NY Waterway Port Imperial Ferry Terminal and the Hudson-Bergen Light Rail, Porter is the debut concept from co-chefs Christopher Lim and Tara Glick. The new spot features a seasonally-driven menu of shareable small plates, coal-fired entrees, wood-fired pizzas, and desserts, as well as a beverage program complete with handcrafted cocktails, wine, and beer. Porter is also home to Porter Provisions, an in-house market, bakery, and cafe. Here’s more about this Weehawken gastropub, a stone’s throw from uptown Hoboken.

porter weehawken

The Inspiration

porter weehawken

{Photo credit: @porterportimperial}

With its priceless views of the Manhattan Skyline and close proximity to bustling cities, Weehawken is prime pickings for businesses, especially restaurants, and that played a role in Tara and Chris’s decision to open a restaurant there. 

Chris and I both grew up in New Jersey and love our home state. We initially started our search for a restaurant space in NYC, but were approached about this space and fell in love with the actual space and area. We love that it’s part of an actual neighborhood. We also saw a big opportunity here, as the market clearly needs more restaurants and offerings,” Tara told Hoboken Girl.

The word porter both relates to Port Imperial and a reference to the person who brings things to you, Tara explained.

“We are passionate about bringing people together through the finest ingredients and creative culinary experiences,” said Executive Chef Christopher Lim. “Tara and I are beyond excited to have the opportunity to join this very special community and offer our customers a unique dining experience. We’re really looking forward to truly becoming a staple in the neighborhood that is home to many special memories.”

The Food

porter weehawken

{Photo credit: @porterportimperial}

Porter boasts a modern American menu that draws inspiration from all types of cuisine and lets the product lead the menu. “We focus on sourcing the highest quality ingredients and are frequently changing the menu based on what’s in season. We’re focusing on more simple means of cooking. Our wood-fired pizza oven and charcoal-burning Spanish grill allow the food to be the real star,” Tara explained.

Read More: Speakeasy Called ‘The Sinatra Room’ Opening in Hoboken

Small plates include focaccia Sicilian, marinated olives, country pate with house pickles, baked “casino” oysters, Spanish octopus, and more.

porter weehawken

Mains include a green circle chicken trumpet royale with mushrooms, kale, and Calabrian aioli, duck breast with braised red cabbage with persimmon, seasonal fish, dry-aged porterhouse with salsa verde, and more.

porter weehawken

The pizza is a must-try. HG Tip: the Mott St. pie with sausage, peperonata, cherry peppers, provolone, and mozz is absolutely delicious. Other wood-fired pies include a margherita, NY-style pepperoni, black and white cauliflower with fontina, mozz, and black trufe paste.

Sides include spinach and kale confit, squash with maple brown butter, and more.

porter weehawken

porter weehawken

We would be remiss not to mention the desserts menu from our visit. The options include tiramisu affogato that packs a rich flavor of La Colombe espresso layered with Zabaglione ice cream {impeccable}, quince and apple tarter made with almond streusel, pie spice, and ice cream, and for the chocolate lovers, a sweet chocolate cake with added hazelnuts and ice cream.

The Drinks

porter weehawken

{Photo credit: @porterportimperial}

Like everything in the restaurant, the duo put a lot of thought and effort into the wine and beer selection. “For most of our wine, we went with vineyards that are practicing responsible farming, natural, organic, and sustainable where possible. It was also important for us to seek out female and BIPOC winemakers. We challenged our purveyors to dig into their portfolios to present us with those options. Unfortunately, those two categories are still underrepresented in the industry, but it’s important for the customers to lean on the people who represent winemakers to include them,” Tara explains. 

porter weehawken

{Photo credit: @porterportimperial}

Overall, that journey has led them to a wine and a beer list that is very different from what can be found in the neighborhood, and will probably be a first for guests {exciting!}. The staff is well-trained to help guests navigate the selections and choose the perfect pairing for a dish.

See More: Speakeasy Called ‘The Sinatra Room’ Opening in Hoboken

For the beer sommelier, opt for Edmund’s oast sour cranberry, the Departed Soles “Philosorapper” Belgian ale, or the Aaron Burr homestead “central Sullivan”. Winos, there are over 120 bottles on the wine list and available by the glass is Corpinnat Brut Reserva Rosat NV, Castellroig, Spain, Colle Imperatrice 2018, Cantine Astroni, Italy, Malbec Paraje Altamira 2018, Traslapiedra, Argentina, and much more.

porter weehawken

The cocktails are fun, delicious, Instagram-worthy, and most importantly, strong. The finook is made with Plymouth gin, don Ciccio finocchietto, and cocchi americano, the baker’s old fashioned is created with rye, spice rack syrup, and butters, and the damn fool {yes, you read that correctly}, is made with Russel’s bourbon, apple, and Aaron Burr cider.

And of course, there are the “after, after drinks”, dessert wine, coffee, and tea available.

The Experience

porter weehawken

The restaurant is expansive, almost a block long with high ceilings and an upscale, modern vibe. The neutral tones and touches of gold create a chic welcoming environment.

If all of that wasn’t already impressive enough, the second half of Porter, Porter Provisions, an in-house market, bakery, and the cafe was added when Tara and Chris looked at the space overall and figured out how to best utilize it. 

porter weehawken

“We have a long linear space that’s naturally broken into three segments and we liked the idea of having a bakery/cafe for the weekends to show off all our house-baked items. The intent is to also use this space as a private dining room {seats 26} and to host events once restrictions are lifted,” says Tara. Once the restrictions are lifted, patrons can also visit Porter for cooking classes, wine dinners, and pop up events in that section of the restaurant.

“We believe that we’ve done everything with intention. There’s nothing in the restaurant or served here that wasn’t carefully considered. Chris and I are very hands-on and we did everything from decor to playlists to meeting with our farmers to bring the highest quality to our diners,” Tara said. “We are very excited and grateful to be here and to be able to share what we do with the North Jersey community.” 

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Written by:

Victoria is HG's Associate Editor and Social Media Coordinator for the Hoboken Historical Museum + Fire Department Museum. She is a fourth-generation Hoboken native, BNR in the Mile Square, and Jersey City. Through playing softball in town for fourteen years, playing the trumpet for the Hoboken High School Redwings Band, and graduating from New Jersey City University, these two cities have a special place in her heart. When she isn’t Style Assisting or volunteering at Symposia Bookstore, she’s exploring everything the Concrete Jungle has to offer. You can catch her at art exhibitions, local festivities, traveling, diving into a new book, thrifting, or indulging in some form of arts and crafts.