Special Valentine’s Day Menus in New Jersey

Special Valentine’s Day Menus in New Jersey
New Menu, Recipes and Website from Essex County’s “Best Romantic Restaurant”

WEST ORANGE – Tuesday, January 05, 2010 .

Highlawn Pavilion, which was recently named Essex County’s “Best Romantic Restaurant” by both Suburban Essex and NJ Savvy Living magazines announced today its special menu for Valentine’s Day.

Chef Mitchell Altholz’s four-course, prix-fixe menu will feature new, holiday-inspired dishes as well as Highlawn classics like grilled filet mignon with truffle mashed potatoes and a Bordeaux reduction. The full menu follows below.

New Website

Highlawn Pavilion is proud to announce a new website that will launch on Monday, January 11. The website will be much more user-friendly and informative for interested diners and prospective brides alike. For local history buffs, information regarding how Highlawn came to be, from its storied past as an open-air casino one hundred years ago to the fine dining establishment it is today, will also be available.

Valentine’s Day Dining Schedule at The Manor

Prospective brides and their families will also have a new resource for wedding tips and suggestions via the wedding blog, “The Art of Reception”, that will be featured on the website. Visitors can expect weekly postings discussing contemporary wedding details with helpful advice from Highlawn’s experienced wedding planners and banquet managers. The URL is www.highlawn.com.

Valentine’s Day Recipe for Two

For those keeping the romance at home this year, Chef Altholz offers the following recipe for two. Please feel free to feature this and/or Highlawn’s menu (see below recipe) in any upcoming Valentine’s Day dining roundups.

American Colorado Rack of Lamb

with thyme and roasted yellow Russian fingerling potatoes and shallot vinaigrette

Serves 2


  • 3/4 pound yellow Russian fingerling potatoes, tossed in vegetable oil
  • 1/4 cup Spanish extra-virgin olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons finely picked thyme leaves
  • 1 (8-bone) rack of lamb
  • Kosher salt and black pepper to taste

For the vinaigrette:

  • 1 tablespoon sherry wine vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon minced shallots
  • 1/4 cup Spanish Virgin Olive oil
  • Kosher salt and white pepper to taste


Preheat oven to 375 degrees F. Roast the potatoes on a flat sheet pan until almost cooked through, approximately 20 minutes. Allow the potatoes to cool at room temperature for 20 minutes, or until they can be easily handled. With a paring knife, remove the skins of the potatoes without cutting into the potato itself. Place the peeled potatoes into a bowl. Combine the oil & thyme. Place half of the mixture into the bowl of potatoes and toss. Season with salt and pepper. Return the potatoes to the sheet pan. Rub the lamb with the remaining half of the oil and thyme mixture. Season with salt and pepper. In a heated sauté pan, or on a hot grill, sear the lamb on all sides. Place the potatoes and lamb in the preheated oven (on separate pans). Combine sherry wine vinegar and minced shallots in a small bowl. When internal temperature of the lamb is 120 degrees remove the lamb and let it rest for about 5 to 7 minutes. When lamb has rested, the potatoes will be ready. Toss them in the oil in which they were cooked to prevent dryness and ensure even seasoning. Pour the juices from the lamb into the bowl containing the shallots and vinegar. Season with salt and pepper. While constantly whisking, slowly pour in 1/4 cup of olive oil.


To present, arrange the potatoes on plate slightly off center. Use vegetables of your choice and place next to potatoes. Slice lamb into 4 equal-sized pieces. Fan the pieces using the bone for height in presentation. Drizzle with vinaigrette.

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