Jersey City is now home to Orange & Olive Caterers & Chef’s Table. Founded by childhood friends Sam Fertik and Aaron Nemani, Orange and Olive seeks to bring an elevated, seasonal, and gourmet dining experience to its patrons. They structured their restaurant like a theater or broadway performance. You make your reservation and pay the flat fee in advance, allowing you to enjoy your meal and leave without any muss or fuss at the end. You can book your ten course tasting menu for yourself and up to twelve other guests, or rent out the place for a private dining experience for twenty, or a cocktail party for sixty. Tastings start at 6pm or 8:30, and last approximately 2 and a half hours.
At $110 per tasting per person (plus a 20% service charge), Orange and Olive isn’t a for the budget conscious. But if you consider the tasting menu as both your meal and your entertainment for the night, the price tag isn’t quite as hard to fathom. The large wooden slab tasting table, which the staff at Orange and Olive built themselves, sits right in front of the open kitchen ranges, allowing for a full view of the kitchen orchestration.
The chefs, inspired in part by Thomas Keller’s mastery at famed NYC restaurant Per Se, incorporate molecular gastronomy into their techniques. At their opening party, we tasted sous vide Berkshire pork wrapped in bacon that was meltingly tender, short rib pho with kaffir lime, yuzu scallop ceviche, roasted maple carrots with goat cheese and pink peppercorns, and unique shooter glasses filled with freshly foamed ice cream floats.
Though they don’t have a liquor license yet, Orange and Olive has a build in bar that crafts creative and seasonal mocktails, which can easily be spiked with a BYO beverage of your choice. Olive and Orange seeks to incorporate only the best local and seasonal produce, with ingredients sourced carefully from a curated selection of purveyors. I took a peek into their walk in fridge and freezer, and I found no ingredients to the contrary. The space, hand lined with rustic wooden panels, feel warm and intimate. A few racks line the walls up front, offering select condiments and ingredients for sale. Though the neighborhood isn’t the most lovely, once you park and step off the street, you’re immediately enveloped in warm candlelight.
Orange and Olive offers bespoke catering services, and they’ll help provide a venue or meet you wherever your event takes place, all up and down the east coast. They seek to take the mediocrity out of catering. You won’t find any lukewarm plates slopped with sauce over powdery potato purée here. They also offer cooking and mixology classes right in their first class kitchen. Orange and Olive is open daily for two evening seatings, and by request for parties and events.
Orange & Olive Caterers & Chef’s Table
For more photos and the full review, visit Devil Gourmet.