Yesterday, my friend Kate was in the area for a wedding dress fitting. Since she lives up north and we don’t get to see each other too often, we decided to make a day of it.
We took a drive to Asbury Park to visit Matt at Taka (and indulge in their happy hour specials). Then, we went across the street to Cookman Creamery for some ice cream. I got cookie butter and lemon cookie. Kate got cookie butter, too, as well as peanut butter crunch with whipped cream. It was quite possibly some of the best ice cream I’ve ever had – so rich and creamy. Cookman Creamery also offers a wide variety of vegan and gluten free options, which is great!
The absolute highlight of our day, however, was dinner at Europa South in Point Pleasant. Kate and I really ended up there by accident, mostly because we both had to use the restroom. It was packed, but we got a small table in the bar area. They offer an extensive tapas menu (at the bar only) and we looked over everything carefully before picking three things to share: fried calamari, Prince Edward Island mussels, and pan amb oli with Serrano ham.
We also ordered a half pitcher of white sangria and had a basket of fresh bread with butter. Everything was presented beautifully. The mussels were seemingly never-ending, cooked in a buttery white wine broth. The calamari was hot and crispy, served with a sweet chili sauce. Finally, the pan amb oli, might have been the tastiest thing on the table. There were thick pieces of Serrano ham atop fresh bread with olive oil, garlic, and tomatoes. Just wow.
While the food was incredible, it wasn’t even the best part of our experience. What we didn’t know when we walked in was that there was live music and dancing. It was wonderful to eat and chat while hearing a live singer and watching couples on the dance floor. And, better yet, the whole bill was only $44!
I definitely have to go back here with Matt. It would be perfect for a date night.