Jersey Spin - August, 2010

NJ Food Reviews - Golden Touch Diner & Restaurant in East Hanover, NJ And Burger Deluxe in Wayne, NJ

Shoreguy - Relaxing



The Golden Touch Diner in East Hanover has been an area mainstay for years and was quite the happening spot back in the eighties.  It was once a place so busy that often there was a line out the door.  The food was awesome and it was a great Jersey Diner.  So what happened?  Who knows, but when any restaurant stops delivering the goods crowds vanishing is sure to follow, and they have.  

From time to time I've checked back in to see if there is anything changing of note, and each time my meals have been below average at best.  I stopped in recently for lunch and there were a few people there.  This place should be jammed with business people from the area and it wasn't, but something was different this time around.  Could the lights be coming back on at this once great area diner?  Very possibly.

They have definitely stepped up their game, but will it help?  Let's take a look.  First, the place looks a little spruced-up on the inside, but still stark and fortress-like on the outside, so much so that if you were driving by, you might keep going thinking it was closed.  This isn't the Bronx, it's Morris County, New Jersey, so how about making it more inviting outside?  Might get many people through the door, but they don't seem quite ready for that just yet -- however, it may be coming.

The menus arrived with daily specials.  Wow, Veal Picatta over rice or pasta for under 10 bucks... yes I will try that!  My guest went with the grilled cheese and add cokes for us both.  Let's stop here for a moment and talk about servers.  I don't need much, just competent, friendly and English speaking.  Our server was friendly but didn't talk much and there was a little difficulty communicating our order, but it did come out as ordered.

The food was good and the Veal was nice and tender but was screaming for lemon.  Some nice fresh lemon wedges would have elevated this meal to well above average.  The Grill Cheese looked perfectly cooked and was remarked as so and not at all greasy like most diners.  I don't know what diner owners / operators are thinking these days, but in today's economy people want value and service.  Not only weren't we offered free soda refills this day, we weren't offered paid ones either.

It's becoming all to clear that at least for now the Golden Touch isn't a viable option for the area business diner used to a fast service, a good value and a good meal.  To be sure there are elements here that are very positive and something that could be built upon but the renewal needs to continue if this place is going to make a run at the old time Golden Touch legacy.

Although the Golden Touch might not be quite there just yet, they have made improvements to their offering, and if they keep going, I have no doubt they can resurge and become a serious area diner once again.
- Jersey Shadow -

Golden Touch Diner & Restaurant
275 State Route 10
East Hanover, NJ 07936
Phone: 973-887-4193

Credit Cards Accepted


Burger Deluxe on busy Route 23 is distinctive in appearance, both inside and out with a cool roadside Americana looking sign.  Inside this deluxe diner, there is a movie set vibe.  The menu is distinctive and even offers half portions and half the price, which is great for diners on a budget or those who do not care for the usual huge diner portions.

I went with the ("Spicy" - As noted on the menu) En Fuego Burger complete with French Fries and a coke.  I'm a big fan of spice but not nuclear heat, as I set my mouth and face on fire when I took a bite of my burger.  That first bite was so hot it made the meal difficult to recover from, but I tried enjoying the tasty and perfectly cooked fries.

I wasn't expecting this much heat from a burger noted as "Spicy" on the menu, but I moved on scraping off the peppers and trying to recover ,which I never really did.  There were some problems with this burger as there was nothing to offset the heat with on the burger.  The burger itself was cooked to order and of good quality and taste.

Okay, time to redo the En Fuego Burger.  How about putting the peppers on the side to start and secondly having a nice mild sauce on the burger to offset the heat?  I'm not the cook and any changes are up to them, but at the very least it might be a good idea to upgrade the word "Spicy" on the menu to something a little more befitting a burger of this heat magnitude.

My luncheon partner ordered an egg-white omelet with mushrooms, scallions, tomatoes and peppers.  Very tasty!  Again, the fries were great.

Burger Deluxe is a cool place but the music was way too loud and from the wrong era.  I am anxious to try some other menu items and anticipate going back in the future to try the Rack Of Lamb Burger.
- Jersey Shadow - 

Burger Deluxe
1420 Route 23 North
Wayne, NJ 07470
Phone: 973-305-0033

Credit Cards Accepted



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