Nico Kitchen & Bar - Newark
Nico Kitchen & Bar - Newark

Nico Kitchen & Bar - Newark

  • Dining Style: Casual Elegant
  • Website: http://www.nicokitchenbar.com/
  • Phone: (973) 642-1226
  • Hours of Operation:
    Lunch: Monday through Friday

    Dinner: Monday - Friday

    Monday through Thursday until 9pm

    Friday until 11pm

    Saturdays and Sundays in conjunction with the performances only
  • Payment Options: AMEX,Discover,MasterCard,Visa
  • Cuisine: Italian, Tapas / Small Plates
  • Executive Chef: Ryan DePersio
  • Dress Code: Smart Casual
  • Accepts Walk-Ins: Yes
  • Additional Details: Banquet/Private Rooms, Bar Dining, Bar/Lounge, Beer, Chef's Table, Full Bar, Happy Hour, Non-Smoking Area, Non-Smoking Restaurant, Private Room, Smoking Area, Wine
  • Catering: We can cater any event from office breakfasts, lunches or dinners, private parties, corporate events, weddings or Bar/Bat Mitzvahs

Getting there

  • Cross Street: Mulberry Street
  • Public Transit: Newark Light Rail - NJPAC
  • Parking: Private Lot
  • Parking Details: NICO offers free parking with validation (although not in conjunction with any NJPAC performance)
A word from Nico Kitchen & Bar - Newark
NICO Kitchen + Bar, the “Italian without Borders” restaurant concept from celebrated New Jersey Chef Ryan DePersio of Fascino and Bar Cara fame, is located in downtown Newark at NJPAC. Known for its power lunch week days, sophisticated happy hour, and contemporary, “shared plates” offerings, it also provides a delicious prelude to guests attending performances by offering a value-priced prix fixe menu before every curtain.
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Nico Kitchen & Bar - Newark reviews from OpenTable diners
78 reviews since July 29, 2014
Overall Rating3.5
  • Food3.6
    Service3.5
  • Ambiance3.6
    Noise LevelModerate
73% of reviewers would recommend this restaurant to a friend.
good for groups (22)special occasion (22)fit for foodies (18)vibrant bar scene (15)neighborhood gem (13)great for lunch (12)hot spot (11)romantic (6)late-night find (5)notable wine list (5)great for brunch (4)kid-friendly (2)scenic view (1)Show More
  • Very Good Prix Fixe Meal
    Jjvm
    Dined on 11/22/2014
    Although not something we normally enjoy, my wife and I enjoyed their prix fixe meal offering. They had a good selection of entrees and the price was reasonable. It was a very nice meal before the show.
    Special Features:
    special occasion, vibrant bar scene
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Ernie
    Dined on 11/22/2014
    Great place to dine in, food is excellent, service is great.
    Special Features:
    good for groups, great for lunch, hot spot, kid-friendly, late-night find, neighborhood gem, romantic, scenic view, special occasion, vibrant bar scene
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Mediocre at best & ignore reservation time
    Scott
    Dined on 11/22/2014
    My wife and I planned to east dinner near NJPAC prior to going to the performance. We had eaten across the street at Maize Restaurant before and had an enjoyable evening. This time, I thought we'd try Niko's as its connected directly to NJPAC. I called their reservation number and got a recording telling me to leave a message with my info and time I'd like to arrive. Or, it said, I could go on line to 'Open Table' and make my reservation. Never having been to Niko before on a performance evening, I preferred to know when my reservation time would be so I went to Open Table. The only available times were either 5 pm or 8:30 pm. All times in between were grayed out. So I chose 5 pm, figuring it would give us time to eat leisurely. We arrive at 4:45 and the restaurant ISN'T EVEN OPEN -- We had to wait in NJPAC's lobby until 5. Once we arrived, there was no on else there but a few diners. We had a drink at the bar and I told the bartender about the limited choices for reservation times. He told me the only track reservations to know that you're coming before the show -- they don't want you showing up at 7:30 and expect to be served in time for 8 pm show. I must admit, it made little sense to me. We relaxed at the bar until 5:30 and got settled at our table. By 6 pm, there were probably 10-15 tables seated. by 6:30 the restaurant was MAYBE half full. They serve a fixed $42 per person menu on performance evenings. The appetizers were fair but nothing tremendous. Main courses were very good - simple - and prepared as asked. The desert choices were limited, but enjoyable. Overall, we enjoyed ourselves but plan on returning to Maize on our next evening at NJPAC.
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • Good place when seeing an event
    Debra22
    Dined on 11/21/2014
    The offering from Nico's was pre fixe only, which was a surprise. The choices were reasonable. It would have been nice to have an option outside of the set menu. The food itself was very good. The waitstaff was attentive.
    Special Features:
    special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • PRIX FIXE PRE-SHOW DINNER
    luvgudfood
    Dined on 11/20/2014
    The prix fixe menu is imaginative and satisfying. The three courses were good and not so heavy that we felt uncomfortable or sleepy during the show. Service was very good -- not rushed but timely.
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • not up to my standards
    rjjm
    Dined on 11/14/2014
    Service was exceptional. Other then the dessert which was great, the appetizer and main entree were too small of a portion and unusually salty in flavor. Would not recommend dining there when only option is prix-fix menu
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • Dining at Nico's
    foodbugVIP
    Dined on 11/14/2014
    This restaurant is not the spot for a quiet date night. While the food and service was good the noise level was too loud to carry on a conversation and the tables were too close to one another. There was a good selection of reasonably priced wines.
    Special Features:
    vibrant bar scene
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelCannot Recall
  • Excellent Service
    Realtor
    Dined on 11/14/2014
    The waitress was very attentive. Food came out at the perfect time. Wine was refilled at the appropriate time. Would definitely recommend eating here before a show; or going to a show at the near by Prudential center.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, good for groups, hot spot, special occasion, vibrant bar scene
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelCannot Recall
  • firsttimer
    Dined on 11/14/2014
    It was perfect for a pre-show dinner and everything about Nico's was perfect!
    Special Features:
    good for groups, hot spot, romantic, vibrant bar scene
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • Great duck!!
    m1chael57
    Dined on 11/13/2014
    Service was excellent as was my duck entree. Many places overcook it even if you ask for medium rare. Not Nicosia - it was perfectly cooked, lean, tender and delicious. Fine deserts too.
    Special Features:
    hot spot, late-night find
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Menu
    Thomas
    Dined on 11/6/2014
    It would be nice to see additional foods be offered on the lunch menu.
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • Merely Adequate
    mzfitmama
    Dined on 11/1/2014
    Our reservation was for 8:15, after a 6:00 performance, and we were able to be seated earlier. Sounded like a good plan, instead of dinner prior to a later show. The prix fixe menu looked promising, but didn't live up to expectations. We had the roast chicken and the salmon; both were presented well but definitely overdone. Service was good until after the entrees, which I thought was odd since there were few patrons left at that time. I was so looking forward to eating here under this management. We usually eat at home prior to a performance; perhaps we should continue to do so. Too bad.
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
  • Very nice, indeed.
    NJMike
    Dined on 11/1/2014
    We had tickets for an 8PM show at NJPAC, our first time there, so we arrived for dinner at 6:30. We were served a nice drink at the bar by Sean and then shown to our table by Shirley. My wife ordered the Flat Iron Steak which was wonderful prepared, cooked to perfection and delicious. I had the duck which was perfectly cooked but the meat was a little bland, a characteristic of farm-raised duck these days; it was very tender and enjoyable nevertheless. The service was friendly and attentive. We will return.
    Special Features:
    special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Bad service
    lovetoeat
    Dined on 11/1/2014
    We went to Nico because we had a show at NJPAC. We arrived 1 1/2 hours ahead of the show and told the waiter. We did not get dessert prior to the show. We came back at intermission and had our dessert.
    Special Features:
    vibrant bar scene
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
  • the Show's the thing
    CaroleVIP
    Dined on 11/1/2014
    Nico's has a trapped audience, pre theater. The food is good but the service is poor, slow, inattentive each time. Requiring a 3 course fixed dinner and then not getting people out on time is very annoying. It is convenient so we go back before a concert, but it should be so much better.
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Poor performance for pre-theater
    NGopentable
    Dined on 10/30/2014
    NICO is located inside NJPAC, so going there for pre-theatre was a no-brainer. Unfortunately, the kitchen and management could not perform. Food came out very late, in fact the couple seated next to us arrived an hour and a half before curtain, never got their entrees and just walked out. Our food was not served hot and the sides were not prepared as stated on the menu. And to make things even worse, we were double charged for our drinks and, when we pointed it out to our server, the error was never corrected.
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • the best dinner i NEVER had
    selmama
    Dined on 10/30/2014
    We arrived early(6:20)for our seating(6:30)but were seated right away. 20 minutes later(6:40)someone took our order for drinks and dinner. 20 minutes later(7:00)the drinks arrived then(7:10)the 1st course. We received repeated apologies, but not from our waitperson, and we did often ask what was happening with the rest of the meal, but nothing arrived by 7:40 and we had to leave for the performance. This venue is located in the performance space NJPAC, and one presumes they deal with a meal deadlines pretty much every night of the week. I've eaten at NICO or its predecessors at one time or another over that last few years, and it has always been a little hectic. But this was inexcusable and I doubt I will ever return. Be warned.
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • Horrible Service
    Belle
    Dined on 10/30/2014
    Kitchen service was so bad that, despite a 6:15 reservation for two with a 8:00 show time and only a limited menu available, our entrees had not arrived by 20 minutes to show time. Our server apologized but could offer no hope/info as to when the food would arrive. With his knowledge, we walked out. Friends had mentioned that service tended to be slow at this restaurant but our experience was intolerable.
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • bartleyjf
    Dined on 10/26/2014
    The bar and wait staff were very friendly and courteous
    Special Features:
    great for brunch, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Perfectly Fine
    Emily
    Dined on 10/24/2014
    Fine for a lunch meeting. Menu was a little sparse. Individual pizza was fine--not amazing--but perfectly fine. Staff was helpful and friendly.
    Special Features:
    good for groups
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Pre Peerformance Dining
    cliffe6d
    Dined on 10/23/2014
    Nico provided very tasty "right sized" sandwiches (fluke and crab cakes) with light greens and oil (alternate choice to fries). Prompt courteous service alert to concert start time at NJPAC
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, great for brunch, great for lunch
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • SERVICE & FOOD
    Thomas
    Dined on 10/23/2014
    SERVICE IMPROVED GREATLY OVER LAST TIME. FOOD MENU WAS JUST SO-SO.
    Special Features:
    great for lunch
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • Penny
    Dined on 10/23/2014
    I had a bad experience at Nico's on 10/23/14. Six of us had tickets for a concert at 1:30PM. We arrived at 12:20PM. Our lunch finally arrived at 1:20PM. We had to pay before we received our lunch because we were late for the concert. I complained. They took $15 off our bill. When the lunch came we had five minutes to eat it and we arrived at the concert as it was beginning. The food was OK. I do not understand why it took so long for the food to come.
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
  • Steer away from Pre Fixe menu.
    FOODIE
    Dined on 10/17/2014
    We went pre-show and the only option preshow is a prefix menu, which seemed to have been prepared before we ordered. The food is great if you can go when there isn't a show about to start and you can order from the regular dinner menu. Our waitress was very accommodating when they didn't have the drink I ordered. She gave me other option I wanted no charge.
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Before the Show
    OpenTable Diner Since 2014
    Dined on 10/17/2014
    If you are in a rush before the show, Nico has an affordable white table cloth meal with drinks
    Special Features:
    vibrant bar scene
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Concert Convenient
    Lettucelover
    Dined on 10/10/2014
    If you are a subscriber to the NJSO at NJPAC, you arelucky to have Nico Kitchen and Bar in the same building. With parking across the street, this is a perfect dinner and concert evening. four of us met for dinner, all enjoyed our meals.
    Special Features:
    special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • service, service, service
    OpenTable Diner Since 2001VIP
    Dined on 10/10/2014
    There must be a large turnover of employees because you never see the same faces. The place is usually empty, but they have trouble getting us all out in time for the performance. Our desserts were served first! When we requested more bread it came without butter. The cesear salad was bland as were the arancini crab balls. The bronzini was very tasty. It annoys me to have to order dessert with my meal.
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
  • Need to improve speed of service
    OpenTable Diner Since 2009
    Dined on 10/9/2014
    It took an hour for the first course and we missed dessert to get Into the show on time. Good was excellent but needs improvement on time.
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Lunch with Easy Parking
    NJRealtor
    Dined on 10/9/2014
    I was looking for a place (in Newark) to take a client for lunch. I had a few ideas for smaller spots but parking would have been questionable. I chose Nico's and had not only easy parking, but a fresh, well done meal with an attractive atmosphere and good service.
    Special Features:
    good for groups, great for lunch, neighborhood gem, notable wine list, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Dinner & Play
    OpenTable Diner Since 2012
    Dined on 10/7/2014
    From bartender to waitress very professional and food was great
    Special Features:
    good for groups, hot spot, neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Overall a fun night
    OpenTable Diner Since 2012
    Dined on 9/28/2014
    We had tickets for a show and we gave ourselves an hour and a half to enjoy a meal before the show. Unfortunately, it seems the staff forgot us and we did not get our entrées until 20 minutes before the show started. We did make it to the show and they did give us a small discount on the bill, but the meal would have been better if we didn't have to rush.
    Special Features:
    special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Just the right place
    Dannyboy
    Dined on 9/21/2014
    My second visit to Nico. This restaurant is the reason we go to the NJPAC. Always have a wonderful time, and the service is great
    Special Features:
    romantic
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Very Good Food
    OpenTable Diner Since 2014
    Dined on 9/21/2014
    The food was awesome, waiters very good, but the entree took way too long to arrive. Had 5:15 pm reservations, arrived on time & everything was moving along nicely & then we had to wait until a few minutes past 6:30 for our entree. Our show started at 7 pm so we had to eat our delicious dinner & dessert very fast, not good. We were given a free round of drinks & a small discount, but I would have preferred more time to eat!
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, hot spot, neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • Special Experience
    MaryB
    Dined on 9/21/2014
    Food was great -- tasty and innovative. Service was impeccable. We have eaten here several times and all were lovely.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Great place before and after a show
    Visitor1957xxxxxxxxxxx
    Dined on 9/21/2014
    Went there before a show, service by STEVE was great, very attentive but not overly smothering. Prefix menu had great choices. (The lump crab appetizer could be a little bigger). But with dessert included, plenty to eat in the end. To wait out traffic we went back in for an after show drink. It was a Sunday night... went to bar, bar full, then eventually seats opened up.... TVs for sports, a few of them along bar, but not huge so it looked like a sports bar. Will go back again before or after a show.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, late-night find
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • disappointed
    toobad
    Dined on 9/19/2014
    I have tried many times to get a rez at Nico's so was very happy to get one for 6:15 the night of a 8:00 performance at NJ PAC. Well, they assured us that they can get us out on time for the show. Our waitress completely disappeared, we didn't get our drinks for almost 30 minutes, appetizers came at 7:15, entree 7:30 and they brought out dessert while we were wolfing down our food to make the show. It was prix fix only on performance night, I don't know why they didn't have it together if they get most of the business from show goers in hte same building. The food was very tasty - wish we could have enjoyed it.
    Special Features:
    notable wine list
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Prefix Menu Needs Work
    Prefix
    Dined on 9/19/2014
    NJPAC is a one of my favorite places but Nico's is a different story. The prefix menu needs some help. At first glance, there seems to be some nice choices but if you are vegan or vegetarian you are out of luck. Our server would not accommodate anything that was not on the menu, offering for us to select items that were part of the regular entrees to create a vegetarian plate. What arrived was a plate full of items that did not look appetizing. Although we did not pay for this meal and the manager was very nice, it was a disappointment to the beginning of our evening. I had fish, which was good but barely warm. Dessert though was great! Nico's servers are less than properly trained and it needs upgrading to meet diners needs.
    Special Features:
    good for groups
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelCannot Recall
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • WastingfoodisasinVIP
    Dined on 9/10/2014
    Taste of food was just ok to eat. However, service was horrible. Servers don't know how to serve. How can they expect us to dine without knives and forks? Ambience is casual and relaxing.
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Very Enjoyable
    Realtor
    Dined on 9/10/2014
    We arrived anhour late because of HORRIBLE traffic. We where seated as soon as we arrived and our server was FANTASTIC. We told her we where running late and had tickets to the Eagles concert at the Prudential center. Our food arrived on time and was DELICIOUS. Great meal and service and will diffidently go back.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, good for groups, hot spot
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Great for pre-concert event!
    Gypsy
    Dined on 9/3/2014
    We were in Newark for a show at the Prudential. Found Nico's on Open Table. Nicest place in the area, great bar, within easy walking distance from Prudential, Very welcoming, and friendly, efficient staff. Chef was well aware of gluten issues, and was honest about not feeling comfortable in altering a plate to suit my needs. I would rather hear that, than be unsure if my food was safe or not. Only problem, I did not receive points, as per Open Table policy? Now, why is that? Host said he would look into it. Highly recommended!!
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, good for groups, neighborhood gem, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate