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Hat City Kitchen

245 reviews
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$30 and under
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Top Tags:
  • Neighborhood Gem (326)
  • Vibrant Bar Scene (197)
  • Hot Spot (168)

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At the corner of Valley and Forest streets, (459 Valley) in the shadow of Our Lady of the Valley Church, HAT CITY KITCHEN is a new restaurant in an old building with a new vibe.

"Our emphasis is on quality and integrity. We offer American Comfort foods with an influence from the south and New Orleans or, as we say Creosoul. By focusing on a simple menu, we have the ability to perfect an artisanal process, creating the best food imaginable. We have created an experience that has broad appeal to families,traditional food lovers and critical Epicureans at an affordable price."

All profits from Hat City Kitchen go to support revitalization of the Valley neighborhood; true to Orange's history as a small city where culture and commerce meet in the street. Hat City Kitchen is a happy collaboration of art, urban planning, food and music, playing for the neighbors late into the night.
Dining Style
Casual Dining
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American, Creole / Cajun / Southern
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Hours of operation
Dinner: Sunday: 2:30pm - 9:00pm, Tuesday - Thursday: 5:00pm - 10pm, Friday - Saturday: 5:00pm - 11:00pm
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Phone number
(862) 252-9147
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Payment options
AMEX, Diners Club, MasterCard, Visa
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Dress code
Smart Casual
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Executive chef
Patrick Pierre-Jerome
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Cross street
Forest Street
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Parking details
There is adequate street parking as well as our exclusive use of the Church lot diagonally across from the restaurant.
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Public transit
Highland Avenue Station NJ Transit
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Hat City Kitchen is a speakeasy-style restaurant and live music venue. We opened in mid-January 2010 to showcase artists like blues guitarist Billy Hector, Al Gold another regional favorite as well as nationally known artists and guitar icons such as Leslie West of Mountain. Our fall season is almost fully booked with local, regional and nationally known artists, ranging in genre from jazz, blues, rock, acoustic as well as larger orchestras. We showcase CD release parties and other special events.

Please note: seating in stage area subject to a cover and minimum for live events.
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Special events & promotions
We offer large group menus starting at $20 dollars per person plus tax and gratuity. These are family style three course meals and great for sharing. Please see our website for party packages for details.
Bar Dining, Bar/Lounge, Beer, Counter Seating, Dancing, Entertainment, Fireplace, Full Bar, Happy Hour, Late Night, Non-Smoking, Outdoor dining, Outdoor Smoking Area, Takeout, Wheelchair Access, Wine
What 245 People Are SayingWrite a review
Overall ratings and reviews
  based on all time ratings
Noise · Moderate
94% of people would recommend it to a friend
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Dorothy (New York Area)
Dined on April 15, 2017

My third time. Food and the Afro fusion band were outstanding! We will definitely come again.

OpenTable Diner (New York Area)
Dined on April 1, 2017

Food was delicious! Stuffed catfish with crab meat was awesome! Band not as good as previous visit.

OpenTable Diner (New York Area)
Dined on March 31, 2017

Everything was delicious and flavorful! Started with Crab Puppies. Entrees were fried shrimp & fish and seafood paella. Can't wait to go back! Live band was good.

ShoeDiva (Atlantic City)
Dined on March 24, 2017

AWESOME place great atmosphere. delicious food. will definitely be returning again! music was also very nice!

vipOpenTable Diner (New York Area)
Dined on March 11, 2017

I having surgery so my friends took me out

DMRT (New York Area)
Dined on March 11, 2017

This place deserves credit...Always good music, above decent food with interesting menu! I love this place! Wish there was some parking...

JamieR (New York Area)
Dined on February 11, 2017

I think their dining area can be a lot cleaner. There is one waitress who is SUPER nice and sweet and the others the opposite. Somewhere a long the line they lost the special touch in the food.

concalu (New York Area)
Dined on February 10, 2017

I arrived announcing that I had a reservation.

The young lady offered a table nearest the stage although my reservation clearly stated I wanted to be furthest from the stage and near the ladies restroom.

I told her I wanted to be further away from the stage, so she gave a table further away.

However, there was a horrible draft from window and it didn't seem as those there was any heat being given.

I told my server that I was freezing and wanted to move my table.
There was a table available, which she said was a reserved table and it had to be for the 6 prople.

This is not true because the table I had the very same table only the week before!

Anyway, I ended up moving to another table that still exposed me to the draft, so I was cold all night.

And, the table the server refused me remained empty the entire night. I know this because I was there until closing @2AM.

Thinking about it now, I saw several people with their coats on throughout the show, so apparently they were cold as well.

The day after a significant snowfall and temperatures well below freezing, one is well within their right to expect heat.

There are so many really nice employees there, which is the major draw for returning.
Still, improvements are in order.

I have been there 3 times in the last w weeks.
2 of the 3 times I had some unpleasant experiences.
That is not a good ratio.

I love the place and would simply like to have one flawless experience.

Also, there were many times throughout the show were the noise levels from the bar area outvolumed the band. Not cool!

It is not my intention to extend a poor light on this establishment.
I am simply giving truthful account of my experiences.

I travel quite a distance to patronize Hat City Kitchen, so it should be obvious that I want to lend to it's success.

BrooklynShayna (New York Area)
Dined on January 22, 2017

Very lively with live jazz on stage, kids loved it. Nice that the dining room is separate so you can still sit & eat & talk while the live music is on. Food was great. Very very slow though.

OpenTable Diner (New York Area)
Dined on January 19, 2017

Food was excellent. Go for the fried chicken and Mac n cheese and collard greens. Delish!!! One negative was that the place itself was cold temperature wise. Not sure how loud it gets during open mic which starts at 9: 30.