The Old Bay Restaurant

The Old Bay Restaurant

  • Dining Style: Casual Dining
  • Website: http://www.oldbayrest.com/
  • Phone: 7322463111
  • Hours of Operation:
    Dinner: Monday - Thursday: 5:00pm - 9:30pm, Friday - Saturday: 5:00pm - 10:00pm
  • Payment Options: AMEX,Discover,MasterCard,Visa
  • Cuisine: American, Creole / Cajun / Southern
  • Dress Code: Casual Dress
  • Accepts Walk-Ins: Yes
  • Additional Details: Banquet/Private Rooms, Bar Dining, Bar/Lounge, Beer, Entertainment, Full Bar, Happy Hour, Late Night, Non-Smoking Restaurant, Patio/Outdoor Dining, Smoking Area (patio only), Takeout, Wine
  • Private Party Facilities: The Old Bay is always available for private dining functions and also features a mezzanine dining area overlooking bar areas and lower level dining rooms.
  • Private Party Contact: Pat Pipi 7322463111
  • Entertainment: Friday and Saturday nights feature live musicians and bands performing original tunes and covers ranging from modern rock, jam bands, classic rock, r&b and hip hop. Tuesday nights, The Old Bay becomes the hottest karaoke bar in town. DJ's take over the bar as well on Wednesday and Thursday nights.

Getting there

  • Cross Street: Neilson Street
  • Parking: Street Parking
  • Parking Details: Parking is available on the street, however safe and security monitored public parking lots are located right on the adjacent street as well as across the street in the Hyatt Regency Hotel.
A word from The Old Bay Restaurant
The Old Bay Restaurant is a unique blend of Cajun Creole and American Cuisine, that boasts to enjoy the food as one will the vibrant atmosphere. For over 20 years, The Old Bay has presented an extremely pleasurable dining experience and an actively entertaining night life, where surely everyday is Mardis Gras.
Continued
Foodspotting photos
See all photos
The Old Bay Restaurant reviews from OpenTable diners
43 reviews since May 5, 2014
Overall Rating3.9
  • Food4
    Service4.1
  • Ambiance3.8
    Noise LevelModerate
91% of reviewers would recommend this restaurant to a friend.
neighborhood gem (21)vibrant bar scene (17)late-night find (12)good for groups (12)romantic (11)fit for foodies (11)special occasion (9)hot spot (5)great for outdoor dining (4)great for lunch (4)scenic view (2)notable wine list (2)kid-friendly (2)great for brunch (2)Show More
  • Very Disappointed
    OpenTable Diner Since 2006
    Dined on 8/27/2014
    We were very much looking forward to eating here. Unfortunately, we were Very disappointed. I ordered seafood jambalaya. It was barely edible. The seafood was rubbery and the dish was itself was greasy. Barely edible. My wife ordered the fish special and it was tasteless. Not a good dining experience.
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Great Cajun/Creole
    waspccpa
    Dined on 8/22/2014
    The food was excellent & the servings are large. Very authentic crawfish etouffee' & bananas foster. Lots of other things to try. It was very loud because of the Giants-Jets game and a large party. I'll go back, but not on a weekend.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, great for lunch, neighborhood gem, vibrant bar scene
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • softshell
    Dined on 8/9/2014
    The food and service were quite good, out doggy bg even included the coleslaw we didn't finish.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Great creole/Cajun food
    Chocolover
    Dined on 8/1/2014
    We are never disappointed when we eat at the Old Bay. Everything from the specialty cocktails to the entrees is great. I would give it 5 stars for food except for little things. For example, the waffle that comes with the duck dish was a little dry. I wish they offered grits as a side. Also if they send you upstairs, don't drink too much because going down that spiral metal staircase can be tricky, especially in heels. And the tables are a little tight up there too.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, vibrant bar scene
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Good Authentic New Orleans food
    TimJ
    Dined on 7/28/2014
    Been here a few times over the years when I am in town for business. Taken groups there and they can accommodate. This time I took six people. All dishes were excellent. I had Crawfish Etouffee and it was killer. Having lived in New Orleans for five years, "killer" is a very high mark! Atmosphere is downscale but its not a dive. Service was decent.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, good for groups
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Boss
    Dined on 7/25/2014
    We came here before going to a show and got a 15% discount! this paid for our parking so needless to say this made us very happy! On top of that the food was excellent!!
    Special Features:
    kid-friendly, scenic view, neighborhood gem, hot spot
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • old bay
    debster
    Dined on 7/19/2014
    service was great. i ordered a cocktail that i made up and the bartender got it perfect. we ordered about 6 appys...all very good especially the oysters with spinach and gouda and the shrimp in sherry pepper sauce. our waitress brought food items out in stages so we would not be overwhelmed with everything we ordered on the table at once. wish we could have stayed for the live music! looking forward to going back
    Special Features:
    romantic, vibrant bar scene
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Close to State Theater & parking
    gogogadget
    Dined on 7/19/2014
    They have a great selection of beers, wine and cocktails. The pecan crusted catfish was amazing. The key lime pie was smooth and creamy. Or, try the bread pudding.
    Special Features:
    great for brunch, great for outdoor dining, late-night find
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • The Old Bay-New Brunswick NJ
    ShabbusBueno
    Dined on 7/12/2014
    I've been here many times and never walk away disappointed in anyway! Well unless I get stuck un the upstairs dining room where the only way to get to it is climbing an old metal spiral staircase so tight and difficult to negotiate it's amazing more people don't get injured! Remember when making reservations to request a downstairs table. Overall rating a B with a somewhat limited menu but all the food is superb! The ambiance is intimate at times and other times can be loud when in season. Always great musical entertainment on the weekends and a good relaxed diverse crowd.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, romantic, special occasion, late-night find, neighborhood gem, hot spot
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Great time!
    Foodiegirl13
    Dined on 7/9/2014
    Service was great...fun and knowledgeable! We had a ton of apps and enjoyed a family style dinner with some great drinks! Jalapeño margarita was fabulous. Looking forward to visiting again!
    Special Features:
    good for groups, neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • OpenTable Diner Since 2014
    Dined on 7/8/2014
    Great menu, great food, great beer, great service, cool space. We were there early on a Tuesday night for a quiet anniversary dinner. Other times, the music and crowd pick up. Fun either way.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, good for groups, romantic, special occasion, hot spot
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Great food!!
    Love2eatout
    Dined on 7/5/2014
    First time here, my husband LOVED the gumbo, I loved the jambalaya! Everything we ordered was soooooooo good! For my main entree, I had the crab cakes and my husband had the brisket/chicken/ribs combo. Food was delicious! Will definitely be coming back again!
    Special Features:
    good for groups, great for lunch, neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • ProfessorT
    Dined on 7/5/2014
    The service was prompt, courteous, and attentive, and the food was fresh, tasty and ample. The bread pudding we both had for dessert was especially good. The ambiance was great. It was an early sitting , so the place was relatively quiet. The food was moderately priced. Overall, I really enjoyed the entire experience and will definitely return again and again.
    Special Features:
    good for groups, great for outdoor dining, romantic, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Rick's Review
    Rickster
    Dined on 7/2/2014
    Our server was too busy taking a break to take our order and refill water. Regarding the food, the calamari could have been crisper (cooked longer.) The rice was instant rice. The fish was dry, although a good portion. The website touts this place as a gastronomic experience, so why the bad experience? We went specifically for the etouffee, which the birthday girl requested. Apparently this place is all looks and loaded drinks. What a shame for being in such a great neighborhood.
    Special Features:
    vibrant bar scene
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • Wonderful eatery
    OpenTable Diner Since 2014
    Dined on 6/20/2014
    My wife and I had the occasion to dine at "The Old Bay Restaurant" on June 20, 2014, just prior to seeing a show at the State Theater ... It was our first time and the whole experience was wonderful. I was already recommending the restaurant to a few friends via text and that was before our meal arrived. And speaking of our meal, every morsel of the food we ordered was exquisite. On this occasion I ordered the Red Snapper and my wife ordered the Jambalaya. I would also like to pay homage to our waiter, Reese (sp) ... he was excellent insofar as his serving of the items and with his overall interaction with us. We would definitely visit again and encourage whoever reads this review to do so as well.
    Special Features:
    great for brunch, romantic, special occasion, great for lunch, late-night find, neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • Love the Atmophere
    OpenTable Diner Since 2014
    Dined on 6/12/2014
    As much as the theme is directed toward Mardi Gras, I felt it was more "old fashion cool". I digged that all severs had sleeve tattoos and that (it seemed) tattoos were embraced. That style fit in mood of the restaurant, a little dark, but cozy in a good way. I went for dinner with my Mom in the evening, but also know it's a RU spot at night because the bar/outdoor area is very nice.
    Special Features:
    good for groups, late-night find, vibrant bar scene
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • OpenTable Diner Since 2014
    Dined on 6/7/2014
    Beer list was extensive. Dinner was well paced with a courteous server who offered descriptive suggestions. We love cajun and creole foods and the offerings here fit the bill.
    Special Features:
    neighborhood gem, vibrant bar scene
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Always a Great experience here
    FussyFoodie
    Dined on 6/6/2014
    We were there recently and the pork special was really great! I also enjoyed the sea food jambalaya (lots of seafood and quite juicy shrimp)and was glad to find beignets on the dessert menu. Overall, they are always nice here and you feel welcomed. Good place to eat anytime, but be sure to check out special events! Especially Great Mardi Gras celebrations!!
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, good for groups, neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Not Quite the Real Things
    OpenTableDiner2013VIP
    Dined on 6/3/2014
    I was excited to find "N'awlins" cuisine nearby when visiting the area. I went at the very beginning of the dinner hour so the restaurant was very quiet. The waitress was perfunctorily courteous. I had the catfish balls which I quite enjoyed so I was looking forward to my shrimp creole entree. It was a disappointment. The sauce tasted as if it were right out of a can not warmed very well. The amount of rice was overwhelming. I fished out the shrimp and left the sauce and rice.
    Special Features:
    vibrant bar scene
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
  • JerseyGuy
    Dined on 5/31/2014
    Food was okay, nothing special. We asked to sit outside, but had to move inside when we realized that the restaurant permits smoking in the outdoor area.
    Special Features:
    late-night find
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • worth the babysitter!
    OpenTable Diner Since 2014
    Dined on 5/30/2014
    My wife and I have been wanting to go for some time but not with the kids in tow,. For our 17th Anniversary my wife made the reservation and hired the baby sitter. We had a wonderful experience and plan on coming back with the kids. We enjoyed everything that we ordered and our waitress was very helpful.
    Special Features:
    kid-friendly, fit for foodies, good for groups, romantic, neighborhood gem, vibrant bar scene
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Good Foos
    Paola
    Dined on 5/30/2014
    It's my 2nd visit to Old Bay and I love it! The Spicy catfish balls.. ARE AMAZING! !!
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, good for groups, late-night find, neighborhood gem, hot spot, vibrant bar scene
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • VERYHAPPY
    Dined on 5/23/2014
    FOOD WAS VERY GOOD, WAITER WAS VERY KNOWLEDGEABLE. VERY NICE PART OF NEW BRUNSWICK, WILL COME BACK AGAIN.
    Special Features:
    romantic, neighborhood gem, notable wine list
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Old Standby
    JoelD
    Dined on 5/15/2014
    It's been here for years and has remained consistently good. Specials always worth looking at. Great beer list. Service is always good. Can be noisy at busy times, but generally you can hear the person across the table. Salads are extra and not remarkable. Go for the appetizer/small plate menus instead. Portions substantial. You won't go away hungry, but you will go happy.
    Special Features:
    neighborhood gem, vibrant bar scene
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Mother's Day
    2please
    Dined on 5/11/2014
    The staff was very friendly. The appetizers were great.
    Special Features:
    great for outdoor dining
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Great place
    OpenTable Diner Since 2014
    Dined on 5/10/2014
    The food and service was great! Great spot for friends to get together and catch up!
    Special Features:
    good for groups, romantic, late-night find, scenic view, neighborhood gem, hot spot, vibrant bar scene, notable wine list
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Ratings-Only Reviews
    Based on 17 ratings-only reviews submitted since May 5, 2014
    • Overall Rating3.7
    • Food3.9
    • Ambiance3.5
    • Service4.1
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • The following 245 reviews are from the The Old Bay Restaurant reviews archive.
  • Very disappointing experience
    OpenTable Diner Since 2014
    Dined on 5/2/2014
    It started with the waiter who was very people unfriendly - not once did he come over during the meal to ask if everything was alright - the food was very mediocre - the soup was so spicy to the point of being unedible - in the middle of everything smoke broke out in the room - people who had just been seated left - no word from any of the staff as to what was going on. Sorry - we eat out very frequently - never had an experience like this! Definitely would not recommend this restaurant to others.
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Great Food!
    Paola
    Dined on 4/29/2014
    I enjoyed the atmosphere there, our waiter was very friebdly and attentive. But tge best part was the food evetything was delectable! ! Yummy.. and best fries I had ever!!!
    Special Features:
    Good for Groups, Late-Night Find, Neighborhood Gem, Hot Spot
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Delicious!
    Lelet101
    Dined on 4/11/2014
    Everything we ordered on the menu was very well prepared and full of flavor! Loved the French Quarter-feel of the restaurant ... like i was right on Bourbon Street.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, romantic, hot spot, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • A little disappointed
    SD1234
    Dined on 4/5/2014
    I guess I was a little disappointed at the quality of food, as well as service. The person serving us didn't smile at all, and seemed rushed. The food seemed somewhat blase. I have always loved southern/cajun/louisiana style cooking, and this was a disappointment. We went for my wife's birthday and although it was so-so, it wasn't as great an experience as I would have liked.
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • Food and service very good,
    Princetonfriends
    Dined on 4/5/2014
    Food and service very good, staff was very friendly, would go back again
    Special Features:
    vibrant bar scene, hot spot, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Fun Place to eat.Great beers
    flavacrispVIP
    Dined on 3/22/2014
    This place has been here forever and yet this is the first time I went. I thought it was overall a good experience and I would gladly go back... The beer list is awesome and always changing. The food is good. I am not sure how authentic you want to call it, but they do have some dishes with crawfish and you can't find that everywhere! Our waiter was very pleasant and the desserts sound awesome, but we weren't able to try because we were so full! So that tells you that we liked our meal.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, great for lunch
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • It got off to a very nice
    FDNY
    Dined on 3/22/2014
    It got off to a very nice start for our first time there. Our friends were running late and the gentleman at the door was extremely nice. F he told me not to worry, we had a reservation and we would not lose our table. Dining upstairs was a treat, it kept us away from the noise at the bar. Our server was terrific, I unfortunately forgot his name, a younger guy with a beard. He was pleasant and did a great job explaining what was on the menu. He even suggested asking for a little bit less seasoning because I am not real big on to much spice. The food was very good. I had the steak and it was juicy and tender. We all had a great night. Thanks.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, good for groups, great for brunch, romantic, late-night find, great for lunch
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Happy But ...
    akamorgan
    Dined on 3/22/2014
    Although we had a reservation, we had to wait for 30 minutes for a table. It seemed to be caused by operational issues. Once seated, service from Luisa was excellent and the food was tasty and plentiful. The general ambience was casual and vibrant, a la Louisiana style. I hadn't been to the Old Bay in 20 yrs so will give it another shot.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Fantastic
    Traveler
    Dined on 3/15/2014
    Great food, amazing drinks, and great service. A little noisy but you can still talk and hear the conversation. We went for my wifes birthday, she lives their cajun martinis but they were no longer on the menu, but server went over to the bartender and he knew how to make them. She was so happy. They were really great. It was a fantastic experience. This is why we keep going back. Just a really great restaurant in a nice college town. Would highly recommend.
    Special Features:
    neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Great Find
    Mars
    Dined on 3/15/2014
    Plans to see Amy Schumer at State Theater in New Brunswick and needed o find a restaurant close to theater. Old Bay was very good. Food was delicious and Bloody Mary was excellent!
    Special Features:
    good for groups, hot spot
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelCannot Recall
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • attention to detail
    happy2eat
    Dined on 3/8/2014
    Every need was met. They couldn't have been nicer. We had 2 birthdays, an anniversary and requested a quiet table since 2 guests are heading impaired. The service and food were perfect. Thank you. You made our special evening lovely and even had leftovers for the next day. The beers onr special were amazing too!
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, vibrant bar scene, great for outdoor dining, romantic, neighborhood gem, hot spot, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Old Bay - after a show
    jobrien2
    Dined on 3/8/2014
    We went to the State Theater in New Brunswick for a show, and then walked to the Old Bay for dinner. It's only a few blocks away, and is a pleasant stroll, and the same goes for the return to the parking garage, as it was a nice walk after a wonderful meal. We had made reservations and were seated promptly. The waitress was very pleasant and attentive, collecting our drink order and getting those going, while we selected appetizers and our entrees. The presentation and taste were excellent - we really enjoyed ourselves and couldn't believe we ate everything! We had a very pleasant experience, and will definitely go back!
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, good for groups, neighborhood gem, hot spot, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • Decent Cajun, OK dining experience
    OpenTable Diner Since 2012
    Dined on 3/8/2014
    First time, will probably give it another shot with hopefully better result. I like Cajun food and the chicken jambalaya was pretty good, not great. My date had the pecan crusted catfish, which was cooked fine, but served very soggy due to an over abundance of some flavorless sauce. The salad was excellent and I really liked the unusual zinfindel viniagrette dressing. My biggest complaint is the upstairs dining room where we ate was so packed with tables that it was uncomfortable. Servers had to thread their way between them in spaces so narrow they were carrying the food over other people's tables. Leaving the table to use the facilities required walking sideways to keep from bumping people's elbows at other tables, not good.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • The old bay is still
    Njsharon
    Dined on 3/1/2014
    Our favorite after 22 years! We fell in love with the old bay in graduate school while at rutgers and had our wedding rehearsal dinner there22 years ago. Our family and friends were very impressed with the wonderful and unique food. We have returned over the years, but recently had not had the opportunity to go back. We went this weekend as a surprise for my husbands birthday. We were so excited to return and the old bay was excellent! We were so happy to see our old favorites on the menu. Our kids enjoyed the food and the old stories.cant wait to see the old bay again soon.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, vibrant bar scene, romantic, neighborhood gem, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.