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Things to Do in the Hamilton Park Neighborhood of Jersey City

by Stephanie Brown
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Jersey City is made up of different neighborhoods with distinct personalities, like Bergen-Lafayette, the Heights, Paulus Hook, and Hamilton Park. Getting to know each Jersey City neighborhood takes time, but it’s fun to play tourists in your city. Hamilton Park is a quaint Jersey City neighborhood home to excellent restaurants, local boutiques, and the namesake park. Keep reading to learn more about the history of Hamilton Park + a brief tour of this neighborhood’s best restaurants, shops, and community events.

History

Hamilton Park is a leafy neighborhood in Historic Downtown Jersey City. Victorian Brownstones surround the park which, yes, is named for Founding Father Alexander Hamilton. (Cue the Hamilton soundtrack.) The story behind the park’s name goes back further than Lin-Manuel Miranda’s iconic Broadway show. New York Senator John B. Coles helped create the park in the 1800s as an ode to Alexander Hamilton. A major renovation in 2010 enhanced the public green space and residents and visitors are welcome to enjoy the tennis courts, gazebo, basketball courts, and playgrounds. 

Eating + Drinking

Ahri’s Kitchen | 227 7th Street

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Ahri’s Kitchen is a family-owned Korean restaurant that opened in Jersey City almost a decade ago. The menu features Korean BBQ, kimchee fried rice, soup, noodles, + bibimbop. The restaurant has weekday lunch specials for anyone who wants a quick, filling option when working from home.

Cangiano’s Marketplace | 225 Pavonia Avenue

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Cangiano’s Marketplace is a beloved Italian market that specializes in sandwiches, bagels, cheese, and homemade desserts. The shelves are stocked with some staples, like produce, milk, and gluten-free pasta. On sunny days, it’s hard to beat a trip to the Cangiano’s hot bar or deli counter for picnic supplies.

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Read More: Exploring Jersey City: The Bergen-Lafayette Neighborhood

Chickie’s | 236 Pavonia Avenue

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Chickie’s is a swanky Italian restaurant from the team that co-owns Hamilton Inn and Hamilton Pork. Crispy Zucchini and the Stracciatella appetizer served on pizza toast are stand-out starters, but the pizza, piccatas, marsalas, and parms are all worth making a reservation here. Happy hour runs Monday-Friday from 4PM-6PM with discounts on certain drinks.

Ed and Mary’s | 174 Coles Street

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Ed and Mary’s is a neighborhood bar with a menu of comfort food classics like grilled cheese, burgers, + buffalo chicken wraps. The drinks menu has something for everyone from draught beers to nonalcoholic cocktails. The bar often hosts trivia, Drag Bingo, and karaoke events. 

The Hamilton Inn | 708 Jersey Avenue

 

 
 
 
 
 
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Hamilton Inn has been a staple of the Hamilton Park food scene since 2010. It’s a beloved brunch spot and well-known for its seasonal Camp Hamilton outdoor oasis. This first-come-first-serve al fresco dining area has picnic tables and a full-service bar in an Air Stream trailer parked in the courtyard. 

Hamilton Pork | 247 10th Street

Hamilton Pork serves BBQ, tacos, and tequila. The eatery is co-owned by the team behind Hamilton Inn and Chickie’s, so it’s no wonder it’s a hit. The BBQ menu has brisket, baby back ribs, pork belly, + pulled pork and the taco menu includes BBQ tacos, shrimp tacos, and potato tacos. Want to pair the meal with a marg? Strawberry, mango, tajin-cucumber, and classic margaritas are available.

 

 

The Hive | New Location Coming Soon

Hoboken’s (+ Blake Lively’s) favorite cinnamon rolls are coming to Jersey City soon. The Hive is planning to open a second location on Jersey Ave, just off Hamilton Park. Construction is underway and the new space will have all of the highlights from the original location, like the play space for little ones, the welcoming vibe, and a menu of creative sweet treats + coffee drinks.

Milk Sugar Love Creamery and Bakeshop | 19 McWilliams Place

Milk Sugar Love is a handcrafted ice cream shop just off Hamilton Park. On sunny days, there’s a line out the door, but the all-nature artisanal scoops are worth the wait. Milk Sugar Love has been serving high-quality ice cream since 2013 and popular flavors include Midnight Cocoa, Alfajores ‘n’ Cream, Strawberry, and Lemon Olive Oil.

Rustique Pizza | 611 Jersey Avenue

 

 
 
 
 
 
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Rustique Pizza is a family-run pizzeria that specializes in brick-oven pizza, hot + cold heroes, and salads. The restaurant’s cheese, bread, and dessert are all made in-house. Gluten-free pastas are available. 

White Star Bar | 230 Brunswick Street

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White Star Bar is a casual spot for craft cocktails, burgers, wings, and brunch with a sister restaurant in Paulus Hook. Happy Hour runs Monday-Friday from 4PM-6PM. Specials include the Brie + Wild Mushroom Poutine and Spicy Vodka Chicken Parm Sandwich. 

Shopping + Things to Do

Betty’s Ceramics | 224 9th Street

 

 
 
 
 
 
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Betty’s Ceramics is a neighborhood ceramics studio with classes and parties for kids + adults. Anyone who is really crafty can sign up for a monthly membership that comes with full access to the space, a personal storage shelf, + use of studio tools.

Hamilton Park | 25 W Hamilton Place

Hamilton Park, the greenspace the neighborhood is named for, is the heart of this community. It’s a sprawling space with tennis courts, a playground, a dog park, and a gazebo. Events are held in the park throughout the year, like a seasonal farmers market, outdoor movies, and the Zombie Opera.

Hamilton Park Farmers Market | Hamilton Park

 

 
 
 
 
 
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The Hamilton Park Farmers Market takes place on Wednesdays from 4-7PM from May-December. The market features local farms, coffee vendors, food trucks, and live music on occasion.

Jersey City Free Public Library – Pavonia Branch | 326 8th Street

The Jersey City Free Public Library Pavonia Branch is a short walk from Hamilton Park. This location has WiFi, public computers, and wireless printing. Community events like preschool story time, adult coloring club, and the teens + tween anime club are held at this branch.

See More: Things to Do on Bloomfield Avenue in Montclair

Love the Clutter | 23 McWilliams Place

 

 
 
 
 
 
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Love the Clutter is a home and lifestyle shop close to Milk Sugar Love + WORD Bookstore. Local business owner and designer Sarah Sacco runs the shop and curates a beautiful selection of textiles, candles, clothes, and jewelry. Pop-up book clubs and candle-making events are held occasionally at the store.

Thirsty Quaker | 492 Monmouth Street

The Thirsty Quaker is the only home-brew supply shop in Hudson County. This bottle shop also stocks over 800 craft beers, wine, + spirits. Anyone who wants to learn how to brew beer or make wine can sign up for one of the Thirsty Quaker’s private classes or workshops.

WORD Bookstore | 29 McWilliams Place

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WORD Bookstore opened in Jersey City in 2013 and relocated to Hamilton Park in 2022. This independent well-stocked bookstore has a curated list of Staff Picks along with a selection of candles, cards, + other small gifts. Author talks, book launches, and story time events are held at this community bookstore. 

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