Hoboken, Hudson County, New Jersey 07030
Traditional and very popular steakhouse and bar with a casual, old-fashioned, neighborhood feel. Known for its huge steaks. Zagat rated. Entree price range $12-$30.
Enjoy delicious steaks at affordable prices in a casual, convivial setting.
Arthur's Tavern 237 Washington Street (at Third St.), Hoboken 201-656-5009
Monday to Thursday: 11:30 a.m. - 11:00 p.m. Friday & Saturday: 11:30 a.m. - midnight Sunday: 2:00 p.m. - 10:00 p.m.
Reviewed by Sarah Nelson
Next time you crave a big, sizzling steak—and I do mean big—stop by the famously affordable Arthur’s Tavern. The first of this Jersey mini-chain was opened in Morris Plains in the late seventies, and after it had attained much success and a reputation as a bargain, proprietor Arthur McGreevy spread the goods to Emerson, North Brunswick, and, thankfully, Hoboken.
A black-and-white striped awning runs the length of the front and red neon Arthur’s signs punctuate the windows. From the outside it appears to be of average size, but a stroll past the first room will lead into a labyrinth of two bars and four spacious dining areas. Beer-logoed mirrors align the walls and red-and-white-checkered clothes drape each table, adding to the casual, convivial scene. Arthur’s can always be counted as a place to watch the big game, and there are invariably several tables of men enjoying steak dinners together—their hands clenching jumbo mugs of beer, their eyes transfixed on one or another television screen. But this gathering place isn’t just for sports fans. Many families habituate Arthur’s, as do couples, for a relaxed, kid-friendly atmosphere.
Select an appetizer while munching on the complimentary garlic pickles, hot peppers, and pickled tomatoes. The entire menu can be read twice in less than a minute, and that’s part of the appeal as well. They stick with what they know. The French onion soup ($2.95) and chili ($3.95) are tried and true favorites, but may be a bit filling as preludes to a giant steak. The garlic bread ($2.50) makes mouths water, and the Caesar salad ($3.50) is a well-prepared classic. Hamburgers with various toppings are always a safe bet ($4.75), and the overstuffed sandwiches ($4.95)—all-white-meat turkey, hot corned beef, ham and Swiss, liverwurst and onion, salami, roast beef, or tuna fish—are deliciously satisfying.
Steaks, of course, are Arthur’s staple. A juicy, full-flavored 24-ounce boneless Delmonico is only $14.95, or you can opt to share a whopping 48-ouncer for $25.95 (plus a modest sharing fee). Arthur’s old-fashioned potatoes accompany steak dinners, or you can get them as a side dish for $1.95. If room for dessert is even a possibility, two good ones are a rich slice of chocolate-mousse pie or a homemade cheesecake with strawberries ($3.50 each). Be sure to ask about their daily specials in entrées and desserts.
Although the waitpersons are sometimes inattentive, it doesn’t seem right to judge them too harshly. With its no-reservation policy making for a standard half-hour wait on weekends, this bustling red-meat mecca stays packed. Orders are generally taken promptly, and the meals served hot, but don’t expect the servers to linger—it’s not that type of place. Most likely, you’ll have to flag one down on the fly. Despite the busyness, however, the food is consistently good and the quantity always impressive.