Mara's Continental Cuisine

4.4
261 Reviews
$31 to $50
Continental
Mara’s offers a fine dining experience in an elegant atmosphere in the heart of Middlesex County, New Jersey. Our Executive Chef, Michael Steinberg, trained at the prestigious Institute of Culinary Education in Manhattan and has designed a menu that focuses on seafood and steaks. Every item on Mara’s menu is made to order with high-quality ingredients and great care is taken to ensure that you receive a top-notch dining experience at a relaxed pace. We look forward to having you dine with us.

Safety precautions

Cleaning & Sanitizing
  • Surfaces sanitized between seatings
Physical Distancing
  • Limited number of seated diners
  • Distancing maintained in common areas
  • Extra space between tables
Protective Equipment
  • Waitstaff wear masks
Screening
  • Sick staff prohibited in the workplace
What 261 people are saying
Overall ratings and reviews
Reviews can only be made by diners who have eaten at this restaurant
4.4based on all time ratings
4.5
food
4.3
service
4.3
ambience
4.2
value
Noise · Quiet
94% of people would recommend it to a friend
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MarcW
New York Area
18 reviews
Dined on March 7, 2020
Overall2food3service2ambience2

Disappointing evening. I try to be understanding but too many things were missed tonight: We sat at the bar before dinner and after one cocktail they ran out of the vodka we ordered, then they ran out of vermouth for Manhattans. Once seated at the table we were told that they ran out of bread. We ordered appetizers but they ran out of the octopus and then they informed us they were out of the pork belly. It started to become an almost comical trend. The appetizers that they had, apple and Gorgonzola salad, French onion soup, calamari, tuna tartare were all nicely presented and tasty. However, three separate occasions servers came to out table and delivered food/drinks that we hadn't ordered. Additional, we had three separate waitresses come to our table and either take orders or ask questions; we couldn't identify who our primary server was. Stacey, who informed us that she was in training and would be assisting, was the saving grace. She was personable, attentive, and friendly. All-in-all it was just a bizarre dining experience at a 1/2 empty restaurant on a Saturday evening. If your unsure about the attire, it seems anything goes- I was corporate business-casual, but there were men in baseball hats & work boots, while another was in a soccer uniform and flip-flops! Overall weird for a restaurant that's set with linens

OT
OpenTable Diner
1 review
Dined on March 7, 2020
Overall1food2service1ambience1

Really!?

I literally never got my entree. A service disaster from start to finish. Waited an eternity to ever see wait staff to begin with. Finally the hostess saw us sitting there with menu, but no water or drinks and instructed a waitress to join us.

Appetizers and drinks went ok. Although the waitress has no knowledge of the wine menu.

We ordered the skirt steak. A hanger steak came out with a butter knife to cut the steak. The shrimp entree was supposed to be served over pasta. It was served next to potatos. I ordered the duck entree. It never came. We literally only saw our waitress once, when we ordered our food. She NEVER came back. No one checked on us.

Went to hostess. "Sorry,I don't know"

Went to old guy that appeared to be management. "Let me check".

My family finished their wrong orders and I got a check and my duck in a tupperware.


Just don't go here. Even the food that showed up was only moderately good.

My apology was,"Sometimes this happens in food service"

BTW, they must be paying for good reviews. One reviews says they need a Michelin star?! I've been to plenty of restaurants. This place had a reasonably ok chef, and the rest is crap

TM
TinaM
San Francisco
3 reviews
Dined on March 7, 2020
Overall1food1service1ambience3

If I was able to give this restaurant no stars, That would be my rating. My husband and I went there to celebrate my birthday. We got there before 6pm. The restaurant was not busy, 3 other tables besides ours. The waiter came over to advise the we’re out of crispy artichoke hearts and asked if we wanted anything from the bar. Told him we will wait for dinner and placed our appetizer order, jumbo lump crab cocktail and clams in a white sauce. The appetizers took at least a 20- 30 minutes to come out. They were good but nothing special about them. When the waitress came to clear our table, she spilled the clam sauce on the table. She apologized and walked away. The hostess came over and asked if we wanted her to take care of the spill. We said yes, thinking she would change the table cloth. Nope she put a black napkin over it. We were waiting for our main course to come out. Possibly 30-40 minutes later we were told our main course will be right out. Ten minutes later our waiter said several dishes were dropped in the kitchen and he wants to make sure they were not ours. What did you order, was his question. Told him scallops oreganata and rack of lamb. He left our table to check. He came back and said “yep, that was your order on the floor, ok, we will remake” and walked away. Are you kidding me? No apology - nothing from this restaurant. We wait another 20-30 minutes and the food was still not out. Other tables that came in an hour later than us were getting there food. The hostess asked how dinner was and I told her what happened. I was so disgusted with how we were treated, I did not want to wait any longer. Requested the check, thinking they would compensate us for the apps but that did not happen. Paid $40 for appetizers and left. Would not go back there again and would NOT recommend this restaurant to anyone. This restaurant is a NIGHTMARE and does not mot know how to treat their customers.

K
Kevin
Orlando
1 review
Dined on February 28, 2020
Overall1food1service1ambience1

Great Food served in a wonderful, cozy atmosphere by a very attentive staff. Come a check out this hidden gem

SB
StevenB
Orlando
2 reviews
Dined on February 21, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

(Dined Friday 2/21/20) I live out of the area but try to get to Mara's whenever I get to visit family still in Old Bridge area. While the base menu may seem somewhat limited, the lamb is always fantastic (what I always get there) and there are always specials for appetizers and dinners. Friday's specials included lobster bisque, a lump crab cocktail, twin lobster tails, lobster francaise, 10 oz filet mignon with a surf and turf option and a fresh fish special. The tuna tartare appetizer is always delicious and the lamb is plentiful and always perfectly cooked. A good helping of vegetables (broccoli, asparagus, green beans and carrots) are enjoyable and their house potatoes (baked potatoes, broken apart by hand, quickly deep fried and then seasoned with garlic, herbs and parmesan!) are a favorite part of the meal. In the past the kitchen has been a little slow but not on my last two visits. While the restaurant is not located in an area known for finer dining, and the parking lot could use some TLC, the food alone at Mara's should keep this place going.

MC
MichaelC
1 review
Dined on February 16, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Excellent all around! Loved the atmosphere, service and most of all the meal!

OT
OpenTable Diner
New York Area
1 review
Dined on February 14, 2020
Overall5food4service5ambience5

Very lovely dinner. Beautiful space. Good portion size. Filet Mignon was good, but lobster was amazing (cooked perfectly). Gorgonzola salad also very good, and Mara’s Cheesecake is one of the best I had. Some small issues here and there but did not detract from an excellent experience on Valentine’s Day.

NK
NellyK
1 review
Dined on February 8, 2020
Overall5food5service4ambience4

The food was very good.
The wine variety is good

HK
HarryK
New York Area
3 reviews
Dined on January 31, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

We had the Octopus appy, which was on the special menu. They were fresh and perfectly cooked.
My wife had the fish topped with crab meat, which was also on the specials menu. I don't recall what type of fish it was, but she loved it.
The Pork Chop entree with Reduction sauce was the best I've ever had.
Beyond that, both entrees came with their potatoes, crispy on the outside, soft and moist inside, sprinkled with parmesan cheese and was to die for. Also, just for good measure, the vegetables made it to the table still hot...don't see that very often!
We do plan on returning!

OT
OpenTable Diner
New York Area
2 reviews
Dined on January 25, 2020
Overall1food3service1ambience3

Seated at 6:30 and food arrived at 9:15. Unacceptable

m
vipmrichter
New York Area
16 reviews
Dined on January 23, 2020
Overall4food5service4ambience4

I feel that most restaurants don't fully understand how to cook spicy food. Frequently, spicy dishes have too much heat added and the other flavors are drowned out. Additionally, my wife doesn't care for spices and I like spicy food. Everything we ordered was seasoned perfectly to our tastes as we has requested.

The rest of the aspect of the evening were also very good. The décor and ambience at Maras were pleasant. The hostess and servers were all very polite and had an excellent knowledge of the menu. The menu and specials included a lot of the usual things you expect but had some other interesting options as well. Once we ordered we the service was paced perfectly; it was very relaxed. We never felt rushed and never wondered where the food and drinks were.

C
Choppy
New York Area
8 reviews
Dined on December 31, 2019
Overall3food3service1ambience5

Restaurant was half empty, but after being seated we waited an hour and 15 minutes then I asked for bread. The food was good but the time between appetizers ,salad,and dinner was way too long. We also were never asked if we needed drink refills or anything else Food was dropped in front of us and server ran away before we could ask for grated cheese , steak sauce or anything else. Potato’s were burned I asked to speak to a manager and was told there was none the cook was in charge but he was busy. Will not go back

BP
BrianP
1 review
Dined on December 31, 2019
Overall2food1service3ambience4

Don’t normally write reviews even if a restaurant happens to have a bad day. But from the time we walked in it was all down hill from there. Visited on New Year’s Eve and for ease of service for the kitchen I would Assume they were only offering a set menu with a couple appetizers and 4-5 entrees. I was Ok with the set menu because normally a set menu makes for less error. However from the time we got sat it took almost an hour to be served a plate with a few ounces of ice cold crab meat with a ramekin of cocktail sauce plus a stuffed mushroom that was lukewarm and mediocre at best. Before we could take a few bites on the appetizers the food runner dropped off our Caesar salads so we condensed the two app plates and sent one empty dish back to make enough room on the table. Caesar salad was drenched in dressing and burnt croutons. Finally we get our meals almost 2 hours in and both dishes were cold. My filet was like warm and medium even tho I ordered Medium rare. My dates tuna steak was ordered medium rare and was basically raw. No one came to the table to check after meals were dropped so we just ate considering we were starving. I let the waitress know our meals were cold and asked for the desserts Togo. Needless to say my bill was over 250$ for slow service and cold food. If your going to offer a set menu you better execute it because people like me won’t be coming back. Very disappointed after reading such great reviews.

OT
OpenTable Diner
New York Area
1 review
Dined on December 31, 2019
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Food was fantastic! We went there for a NYE celebration. Service was great! We will definitely be going back.

RW
RobW
New York Area
12 reviews
Dined on December 28, 2019
Overall3food5service1ambience3

The food is quite good. Everyone in my party enjoyed their meal. However, the food preparation time was much too long. It was over an hour waiting for the appetizer. The entree arrived about 35 minutes later. The restaurant was only about half full. The wait staff was attentive. So I have to assume the kitchen was understaffed. The quality of the food will bring me back.

E
vipEssen
New York Area
26 reviews
Dined on December 20, 2019
Overall3food4service4ambience2

The food in Mara’s shines more than anything else. Lots of great choices to pick from. Duck breast was perfect. Decor is very dated and almost random, hence ambiance is not so high.

DL
DeniseL
Philadelphia
6 reviews
Dined on December 6, 2019
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Food and service was excellent

OT
vipOpenTable Diner
New York Area
7 reviews
Dined on November 24, 2019
Overall5food5service5ambience4

Great meal and great service!

PM
PaolaM
1 review
Dined on November 22, 2019
Overall5food5service4ambience5

Absolutely delicious. Close to home. Definitely great for a date night. Will be back often.

CB
CarmellaB
Philadelphia
4 reviews
Dined on November 2, 2019
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Such a charming place. The food was excellent, very tasty. Desserts were so good and you could taste the freshness of the ingredients used.

DD
vipDaveDManalapan
New York Area
32 reviews
Dined on October 19, 2019
Overall4food5service5ambience4

Very nice ambience and good food.

K
Kimberly
Atlantic City
1 review
Dined on October 19, 2019
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Our experience was great, good food, not a lot of noise, service was very helpful. I have already referred Mara’s to friends.

SP
SantiagoP
1 review
Dined on October 11, 2019
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Place is beautiful. I went on a Froday night and there was a great ambient with a piano player. Plenty of parking. Delicious food and great service. I will go back.

g
gman
New York Area
2 reviews
Dined on October 4, 2019
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Definitely, the food was great, and atmosphere just right. as well as the price and the people

MM
MarieM
New York Area
10 reviews
Dined on September 29, 2019
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Excellent service! Absolutely delicious food! Wonderful restaurant to go to!

JG
JessicaG
1 review
Dined on September 27, 2019
Overall5food5service3ambience4

The food was excellent! It was our first time there and we will definitly be back. The grilled octopus appetizer was out of this world!

M
vipMyra
New York Area
8 reviews
Dined on September 27, 2019
Overall5food5service5ambience5

We met half way. between north and south. Who would have thought that we would find the perfect Restsurant off the beaten path. The place is beautiful, quiet witj soft piano music. We even got up and danced! The fennel salad was dressed in a yummy citrus flavor. The salmon was perfectly cooked with lots of delicious vegetables. Our sever was so helpful and welcoming. We had a gluten free flourless chocolate cake for dessert. So good. We will be back often.

CD
vipCathiD
Savannah
21 reviews
Dined on September 20, 2019
Overall5food4service5ambience4

Good food., long relaxing meal. Plan on waiting in between courses. Nice piano music

f
fitgirl
New York Area
5 reviews
Dined on September 7, 2019
Overall5food5service5ambience5

We were celebrating our 34th wedding anniversary

LT
LibertyT
1 review
Dined on September 6, 2019
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Love coming to Mara’s! Your restaurant has so much charm. The food is delicious & beautifully prepared. Service is always very good, too. Thank you.👍❤️

OT
OpenTable Diner
New York Area
2 reviews
Dined on September 4, 2019
Overall5food5service4ambience5

Great. Enjoyed it

RN
vipRobinNewYork
New York Area
6 reviews
Dined on August 24, 2019
Overall5food5service5ambience5

My husband and I went to Mara’s tonight on the recommendation of a friend.

BN
BernadetteN
1 review
Dined on August 17, 2019
Overall3food4service4ambience3

The service was very slow we sat down after about 20 minutes got a drink after about an hour got our appetizers and then 50% of the food was really good mine was kind of burnt so I'm not really sure I would give it another try cup on meals were delicious but the wake time in between was really too long

N
Nancy
New York Area
8 reviews
Dined on August 16, 2019
Overall5food5service5ambience5

We were all very impressed with our dinners and the quiet off to the side dining room!

SM
SamM
1 review
Dined on August 2, 2019
Overall1food1service1ambience1

My birthday party Friday night turned out to be a nightmare at this restaurant. Based on some of the good reviews, we reserved a table for 8 at 8:00 PM ( Open table could not find a table for 7:30 PM!!). There were 3 other tables with patrons ( 2 per table) and the rest of the 15+ tables were empty. It took the staff more than an hour to bring the appetizers (salads and French Onion soup) and 2 hours to bring the entrée. Of the 4-5 waiters in the main hall, there was only one middle-aged lady taking the orders and she made damn sure that we were served after all the other patrons had finished their entrees. Not a word of apology from the crew even after enquiring many times about the delay. Totally humiliated and embarrassed for my family; my sister had flown in from Chicago for the dinner. Mediocre food together with terrible service brought about a bad taste in our mouths which is bound to last for a long time.

KH
KathyH
New York Area
2 reviews
Dined on July 24, 2019
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Had a great experience at Mara’s.

JS
JackiS
New York Area
2 reviews
Dined on July 20, 2019
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Delicious food, great service. Excellent dining.

DC
DebC
New York Area
19 reviews
Dined on June 22, 2019
Overall5food5service5ambience5

we have always had a great meal... this time with several other couples had an awesome dinner and cant wait to come again....

p
vippennmom419
New York Area
34 reviews
Dined on June 19, 2019
Overall5food5service5ambience5

The service was excellent! Our servers were so concerned for our comfort that they asked us if the music was too loud. (It was, and they adjusted it!)

If you're in a hurry don't go. Allow this special chef the proper amount of time to cook your food! The food is cooked to order, and was "spot on" ! It was WELL worth a little wait! Our server made sure that we had some lovely bruschetta, fresh bread and herbed butter to munch on, and kept on top of our beverage needs.

I didn't look forward to the vegetables that (I thought) were going to come with our entrees. HOWEVER, they were NOT the soggy, grey, steamed garbage that you usually get! We had a trio of beautifully cooked asparagus, carrots and haricot verts. Perfect!

We each had a (delicious) appetizer and split the huge pear, bleu cheese salad.
The greens couldn't have been fresher, and the whole salad was perfect!

My husband had the tuna entree and I had scallops. Each was delicious!

I must say that one of my favorite foods is a POTATO, and what this chef does with the potatoes that accompany the entrees is MAGICAL! Although fresh ground pepper was offered with each course, I asked for some additional salt for my potatoes. It was smart for the chef to not salt them TOO much...I just like salty potatoes!

SW
SylviaW
1 review
Dined on June 12, 2019
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Food is amazing I especially enjoy the duck my husband loves the seafood always fresh and plenty

FAQs

Mara's Continental Cuisine offers takeout which you can order by calling the restaurant at (732) 525-0045.

Mara's Continental Cuisine is rated 4.4 stars by 261 OpenTable diners.

Yes, you can generally book this restaurant by choosing the date, time and party size on OpenTable. Due to local restrictions, this restaurant may not be accepting reservations at the moment.