There's no shortage of excellent restaurants that serve-up great food here in South Jersey.

Whether it's that one dish you get a sudden craving for or a spot you have been going to for years, if you are like me, you have a short list of places that you can always depend on for a great meal.

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So, what are your favorites? Start thinking of yours while you peruse through some of my "go-to" places. And I would love to hear yours -- drop me an e-mail with your favorite restaurants!

  • Menz Restaurant - Photo: Google Maps
    Menz Restaurant - Photo: Google Maps

    Menz Restaurant, Rio Grande

    My grandparents went to Menz's, my parents go there, I go there, and now I bring my daughter to Menz's. Hands down, the most unique restaurant in South Jersey -- and I think I could live on their crab chowder.

  • Sapore Italiano - Photo: Google Maps
    Sapore Italiano - Photo: Google Maps

    Sapore Italiano, West Cape May

    Sapore Italiano is a hidden gem between the hustle and bustle of the touristy-area of Cape May and the lighthouse. Right off of Sunset Boulevard and Broadway (around the corner from Exit Zero Filling Station), this quiet restaurant makes amazing Italian food (start with the beet and goat cheese salad). Make a reservation on the weekends; BYOB.

  • Google Maps
    Google Maps

    White House Sub Shop, Atlantic City

    While their shop on Arctic Avenue in Atlantic City is primarily thought of a lunch spot (even though they're open late), if you have a hankerin' for a sub (sorry, you aren't in "hoagie"-land anymore) late at night, head to White House inside Hard Rock. Yes, you'll have to pay for parking, but sometimes you gotta do what you gotta do. I always go for the White House Special -- as far as I'm concerned, it's the best sandwich in the country. Here's what I do: I get a whole (it's about 3 feet long and weighs about 12 pounds) -- have half as soon as you get it while the bread is hard/fresh, then save the other half for later or even the next day, which will allow all of the magical things they put on that sub to soak into the bread.

  • Tortilla Flats - Photo: Google Maps
    Tortilla Flats - Photo: Google Maps

    Tortilla Flats, Avalon

    If you find yourself in Avalon and you find yourself wanting Mexican food, find yourself at Tortilla Flats on Dune Drive. Everything is great and there are lots of seafood options (I mean, you are on an island). Their grilled scallops wrapped in jalapeno bacon have a nice kick.

  • Calabria - Photo: Google Maps
    Calabria - Photo: Google Maps

    Calabria, Absecon

    This is about as mom-and-pop as you can get. Calabria is a great little restaurant on New Jersey Avenue in Absecon. Everything is great (their Sicilian pizza will feed an army) and they have a very respectable gluten-free menu, should that be a concern of yours. Go here a few times and you'll feel like you are part of the family.

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