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Cafe Panache
Cafe Panache

Cafe Panache Details

  • Dining Style: Casual Elegant
  • Website: http://cafepanachenj.com/
  • Phone: (201) 934-0030
  • Hours of Operation: M - Dinner 5p - 8p
    T - Th
    Lunch 12p - 2p
    Dinner 5p - 9p
    Lunch 12p-2pm
    Dinner 5p - 10p
    Sat - Dinner 5p - 10p
    Sunday - Dinner 5p - 7p (Prix Fixe Menu only, $44)
  • Payment Options: AMEX, MasterCard, Visa
  • Cuisine: Contemporary French / American, Vegetarian
  • Executive Chef: Chef Kevin Kohler
  • Dress Code: Business Casual
  • Accepts Walk-Ins: Yes
  • Additional Details: Banquet/Private Rooms, Farm to Table, Non-Smoking Restaurant, Personal wines welcome, Private Room

Getting there

  • Cross Street: Franklin Turnpike
  • Parking: Public Lot
A word from Cafe Panache
Cafe Panache, located in downtown Ramsey, NJ, has been a top-rated BYO and "culinary mecca" since it opened in 1985. For almost 30 years Chef Kevin Kohler has been tantalizing his clientele with signature dishes - House Made Filet Mignon Ravioli Truffle Butter and Crispy Roast Duckling in Port Wine Sauce. Kohler's menu changes almost daily with seasonal ingredients - producing specials like Lobster in Vanilla Sauce, Artichoke Lasagna, Panko-crusted Soft Shell Crab. Service is "seamless" in an "elegant" "newly-renovated" dining room. Rated Top Restaurant in New Jersey by Jersey Monthly Magazine.
Foodspotting photos
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Diner Reviews
  • "What a fantastic dinner! I took my husband there for his 35th birthday, And I can say we'll be back soon! Amazing, fresh, local food. Awesome service! BYOB! Great job Cafe Panache! (dinner for 2 with tip less than $150)."
    Dined on 8/22/2014
  • "We can understand why it is going strong after 30 years. Having read the NJ Magazine article my husband had to have the halibut. The restaurant lives up to it's reputation. Would go back in a heartbeat even though it's 90 minutes away. Well worth the trip."
    Dined on 8/21/2014
  • "This was my first visit to a much acclaimed local restaurant. Both entrees were excellent, Mahi Tuna and Filet Mignon Ravioli. Appetizer, Hot Grilled Shrimp w/Avocado was good, but only 3 shrimp for $16. The service was exceptional. However, we stated in our reservation online, that we were first time diners, so, one would think we would be given a nice table location. Not the case, first we were put in the corner at a very small table, then when I asked if we could possibly move, the table was larger but it looked into the kitchen. This was a special occasion celebration, so our table location was very disappointing. Also, not sure it was worth the price."
    Dined on 8/19/2014
  • "The last time we went to Panache, my meal was just alright but my Husbands was great. Since people speak so highly of this place, we gave it a second chance. This time the meals were both just ok. Since there are so many choices in downtown Ramsey with fantastic food, at this price point Panache is out of the running. We won't be returning."
    Dined on 8/15/2014
  • "Café Panache has been a (no so) quiet gem in downtown Ramsey for 30 years.... They continue to amaze with a great menu, tremendous food and knowledgeable staff."
    Dined on 8/11/2014
  • "I would have rated it higher, but the duck portion I had was dry. The pork chop was very good, but some of the seasonings they put together didn't marry wonderfully. Nice quiet place. Service was fine, but just didn't feel 100% welcoming. So good place overall if you don't mind a few things that would make it great."
    Dined on 8/11/2014
  • " but when we drove in and saw the site, we were disappointed,it was at the corner of a strip mall. On a Sunday in the summer, there were only a handful of dinners and are we ever glad we found the place and they stayed open. The décor was subtly stylish, the wait staff consisted solely of a waitress and a bus boy, but it turned out that is all that was needed. The dinner menu is not extensive but there are adequate choices. The seasonal salad was cool and crisp with a delicious citrusy dressing, the Scottish salmon grav lox melted in your mouth. the crispy fee range chicken was done superbly and the fish was cooked perfectly. the lemon tart was delicious. we will go back and bring our food snob friends!"
    Dined on 8/10/2014
  • "The night was perfect. My wife and I travel all over the state for food. After saying that, Cafe Panache is in my top 3 resturants in the state. Service was tremendous. Recommendations were spot on. I had the special Soft Shell crab and it was unreal. Loved the staff, and the food. Recommend this place to anyone looking to have an amazing dining experience and that won't break the bank either. Tremendous restaurant!"
    Dined on 8/8/2014
  • "We have never been disappointed in our dining experience at Café Panache! The experienced owner/chef speaks volumes for the professional and polished presentation. It was a lovely way to spend our 50th Wedding Anniversary Dinner. Keep up the great work!!!! You are a rare gem."
    Dined on 8/8/2014
  • "Wonderful evening with very thoughtfully prepared menu. Enjoyed the ambiance, the constant attention, and most importantly the food. No disappointments from appetizer to entree to dessert."
    Dined on 8/8/2014
  • "Diner with a friend was a great time. Service was wonderful staff could not have been nicer. Food was wonderful and different. If your looking for something special this is the place to go."
    Dined on 8/8/2014
  • "I have been going to Cafe Panache since it opened 30 years ago. It continues to be a favorite restaurant. The food is always great. The Wild Mushroom salad is fantastic, when available, along with any of their pasta appetizers. The Wild Salmon or Tuna is highly recommended for your main course. The only problem is trying to get a last minute reservation."
    Dined on 8/8/2014
  • "I came here for my birthday and was NOT disappointed . The ambiance was beautiful and the food was absolutely delicious . This place lived up to the hype. I will definitely be back again. What I really loved about Cafe Panache was the fact that noise level was wonderful . It is one of those places where you can truly enjoy your guests without shouting over each other. To me, that is a very rare gem to find in a top restaurant ."
    Dined on 8/6/2014
  • "The chef here is magic with the sauces created for each dish. On our recent visit, my husband had the soft-shell crabs -- delicious! I enjoyed the heirloom gazpacho for an appetizer and my son loved the corn ravioli appetizer. We enjoyed all the dishes which highlighted the summer produce perfectly. Because the menu changes based on what's available from the farm market, I keep wanting to go back and try something new."
    Dined on 8/5/2014
  • "Cafe Panache in Ramsey, N.J., is supposed to be one of the top 25 restaurants in the state, but it was empty when I had lunch there with a friend. I enjoyed the food, but is this really among the best the Garden State has to offer? The restaurant doesn't offer a fixed-price two- or three-course lunch, which may explain why it was empty. I had soft-shell crabs with salad -- a pricey $23. My friend had roast duck with salad, but wasn't asked how he wanted it cooked. We told the waiter my friend was celebrating his birthday, and he brought us complimentary sorbet. This is by blog post: http://doyoureallyknowwhatyoureeating.blogspot.com/2014/08/cafe-panache-top-new-jersey-restaurant.html"
    Dined on 8/5/2014
  • "As somone who dines out a lot, and have experienced many restaurants all over the world... I rate Cafe Panache very highly. The food is up there with the best I've ever had and would place it in my top 5."
    Dined on 8/3/2014
  • "Great food, nice atmosphere. Close 3rd to Freelance and Restaurant X"
    Dined on 8/2/2014
  • "The food is so fresh and so delicious. Kevin Kohler is a culinary GOD."
    Dined on 7/27/2014
  • "an exceptional dining experience. Lovely food beautifully presented and served"
    Dined on 7/25/2014
  • "Went to dinner with my husband & daughter for my birthday. The food was incredible. Kale salad was perfect. My daughter had the salmon & requested a different sauce than what was on the menu, no problem, they suggested another sauce, fantastic. My scallops were cooked to perfection. My husband had the filet, there wasn't a drop of food left on anyone's plate. Wonderful evening as always. Love this place! It's bring your own."
    Dined on 7/24/2014
  • "I had read the mixed reviews on Yelp regarding this restaurant, but went to the restaurant anyway after hearing a good recommendation from my cousin. My husband and I were glad that we decided to go for it. The food was excellent and had very unique flavors. We consider ourselves "foodies" and were very impressed with the quality and presentation of the food. We will definitely be going back another night for a mid-week dinner date. I had the filet minion and my husband had the pig chop. We were both impressed with our dishes. I am also Gluten Free and appreciated the acknowledgement of my gluten allergy right from the start of the evening so that I knew exactly what I could and could not eat."
    Dined on 7/23/2014
  • "This is a longtime favorite that is still cooking great food. It is a little bit expensive but definitely worth it."
    Dined on 7/22/2014
  • "A BYOB. Food with an Italian flair. The ingredients were fresh and there were an excellent amount of vegetables and herbs to accompany the proteins. The bread was fresh- not frozen. The sauces were what made the dishes most memorable. The building is on the main street of a town with no outdoor dining. The dining room is smallish and updated with classy decor. The chef came out and talked with several of the diners which gave the restaurant a more intimate feel."
    Dined on 7/19/2014
  • "Such an amazing night of great food and service! We could not ask for anything more!!"
    Dined on 7/13/2014
  • "Great food, nice ambiance, I highly recommend it for a nice dinner."
    Dined on 7/11/2014
  • "Food was very good on the edge to outstanding. We had both fish and meat and the quality of the product as well as the way how it was cooked asked for repetition. And the Service was how it should be, attentive without being pushy. We will definitely come back."
    Dined on 7/11/2014
  • "Lovely birthday celebration at Café Panache. Excellent food, beautiful presentation, and attentive service. Best that it's BYO and all your $$ can be devoted to wonderful food. Limited choices but clearly something for everyone. Scrumptious deserts. A bit pricey but great for special occasions and portions surprisingly generous."
    Dined on 7/10/2014
  • "Delicious! Always consistent! Great service! Will definitely go back!"
    Dined on 7/2/2014
  • "All six of us enjoyed our meals. It all started with those great rolls and went up from there."
    Dined on 6/29/2014
  • "The food was so good I almost cried. The sides that came with our entrees were not an afterthought, but complimented the main protein. The service was outstanding and friendly. The atmosphere was relaxing -- a totally enjoyable dining experience. We will be returning to try other menu items."
    Dined on 6/27/2014
  • "Based on this restaurant's reputation, I was so looking forward to our meal but was less than thrilled with the reality. Overall quality of food was good, but prep not wonderful. They were heavy handed with salt on a number of dishes, and i would have liked more descriptive info included in menu. Disconcerting to have to ask what everything is served with, but that's important to know. Coffee was excellent, though, and that's not always the case with other high-end places."
    Dined on 6/27/2014
  • " I was a little disappointed in the food for the first time at Cafe Panache ( it was my sixth visit over the years). The lobster/mussell soup should take the lobster out of the name as it had not a single piece of lobster. Also, my pork chop was undercooked. I have always heard that pink pork was dangerous but trusted that Kevin the chef knew better than me and cooked it this way intentionally.... However, my girlfriend fond her duck entree absolutely delicious and everything else about the place is top notch."
    Dined on 6/24/2014
  • "As a regular diner at Cafe Panache since it opened decades ago I am always astounded how Chef Kohler and the staff maintain the consistency year after year. It never gets old, and regular dinners at Cafe Panache will be one of the things we'll miss the most as we move south to Florida."
    Dined on 6/22/2014
  • "Chef is always on top of his game. Enticing appetizers and very satisfying entrees are always changing so that the diner has a choice even when dining here repeatedly. Fresh produce and inspired recipes (well maybe not recipes) but rather, culinary skills (that's better, right Chef?) keep us coming back for more. This is a special restaurant that never fails to deliver."
    Dined on 6/20/2014
  • "I have been to Cafe Panache many times and I have never come away disappointed. The service is exceptionable and the food is amazing. I went with four friends from the office and every one at the table could not stop raving about the food. I had the halibut on the menu, was a bit concerned about the wasabi, as I am not a fan of too much spice, but as advised, it was just perfect. The lamb was also ordered and was cooked just right, which can be tricky. The desserts, if you have room, are to die for! Still remains on the top of my list in Bergen County!!"
    Dined on 6/19/2014
  • "Hadn't dined here in several years. The menu had great selection and interesting specials. Everything came out fresh, hot and delish. we cant wait to go back again. 5 stars!!"
    Dined on 6/17/2014
  • "As always, Kevin Kohler and his staff prepared an amazing meal using wonderful fresh ingredients. We will be back soon!"
    Dined on 6/15/2014
  • "Never had a bad meal - everything is fresh which is very, very important. It's nice that the menu is limited. When there are too many choices on the menu, like other restaurants, the food can't be all that fresh."
    Dined on 6/13/2014
  • "Went to Cafe Panache for our 31st Anniversary and it was simply delicious!! We are lucky enough to have this restaurant in the neighborhood! We started and shared a seafood salad which was seasoned perfectly and the portion was split into 2! I had the Filet Mignon with sauteed vegetables and mashed potatoes and my husband had the homemade pasta with braised meat... Both dishes were delicious!! Cafe Panache is the kind of restaurant where you do not have to "ask" for anything! Water, bread and whatever your need, are are simply met by a very experienced wait staff, giving the patron space to enjoy it all!! I have eaten here many times and the food has always been exceptional.... You will not be disappointed!!!"
    Dined on 6/11/2014
  • "We had a very Good Friday night dinner. Started with a very tasty vegetable soup and a mushroom salad. We both had the soft shell crabs which were a special that night. The crabs were very good with a slightly spicy sauce. Really enjoyed them. Only dessert we had was the lemon tart which was very good and with excellent lemon taste. All in all a very nice dinner. Recommended"
    Dined on 6/6/2014