Blu Grotto at Monmouth Park

4.2
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526 reviews
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$30 and under
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Italian
Top tags:
  • Good for a Date
  • Outdoor Eating
  • Live Music
Blu Grotto Ristorante consists of a beautiful, all-glass conservatory dining room, three large decks and an enormous open air Biergarten. Blu Grotto will serve modern and classic adaptations of regional Italian favorites, hand made pastas, fresh seafood and prime steak. The restaurant will also feature a deep and eclectic wine list and artisanal cocktails, all in an environment that has to be seen to be believed. We also serve brunch every Sunday from 11:00am to 3:00PM.

Thank you for choosing Blu Grotto. Should your plans change, please let us know.

Please note that due to limited indoor space and the uncertainty of weather, indoor/outdoor seating is sat on a first come first serve basis. If you have a preference as to inside/outside or a specific area of the restaurant please call the restaurant directly at (732)571-7900 and we will do our best to accommodate you. Thank you in advance for your understanding and we look forward to serving you.
What 526 People Are Saying
Overall ratings and reviews
Reviews can only be made by diners who have eaten at this restaurant
4.2based on recent ratings
4.3
food
4.1
service
4.3
ambience
3.9
value
Noise · Moderate
80% of people would recommend it to a friend
5
4
3
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l
New York Area
8 reviews
Dined 5 days ago
Overall 3food 3service 3ambience 4

Service was slow and inaccurate. Pasta had several pieces that were hard as a rock and inedible. Salmon was good.

M
Miami
6 reviews
Dined 5 days ago
Overall 3food 4service 2ambience 4

The manager was outstanding and right on top of our table. Wine was pricey. Our server was not as attentive as would be expected from a fine dining restaurant

BM
New York Area
1 review
Dined 5 days ago
Overall 3food 3service 1ambience 4

our waiter took our drink order and returned with my husbands drink within 10 mins......approx 15 mins "later" my husband asked another waiter to check on my cocktail...."another waiter" did get my drink..

My husbands duck dinner was overcooked...We would have like a table for 2 without being on display in the center of the room..
We will not be returning

OT
New York Area
1 review
Dined 6 days ago
Overall 4food 5service 3ambience 4

The food is excellent but the service

C
New York Area
1 review
Dined on 7 September 2019
Overall 4food 4service 3ambience 3

Overall the service by the bus boys was excellent. The waitress I had was decent. Food quality was good. My steak came out little rare. I asked for medium it came out bloody. But regardless I ate it. Price wise it was overall very good and what I expected. As for ambiance it’s at a track where I’ve been going to as a kid for 30 years so view is of trees but again overall 3.5/5..

SB
Philadelphia
36 reviews
Dined on 6 September 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

The food, service and ambience is outstanding. We will definitely be returning and bringing friends!

RS
New York Area
2 reviews
Dined on 6 September 2019
Overall 3food 3service 4ambience 4

Our waiter Bryan was very good without being obtrusive. My girlfriend and I both ordered appetizers, split one, two entrees and dessert and coffee. The bottle of wine we ordered was sold out, the floor manager suggested another bottle than was slightly more, the burrata with strawberry marinara was very good, my oysters were barely edible (small and old looking), entrée was good as well as desert and coffee. The two women at the front desk greeted us like we broke into the wrong house, all in all it was good although a bit pricey for what you get.

J
New York Area
9 reviews
Dined on 6 September 2019
Overall 4food 5service 5ambience 4

It wasn't a problem snagging up an evening reservation during the week, which is why it was to our surprise that the hostess only gave us the choice of a ridiculous bench seat that faced the rest of the patrons in the center of the main dining area, and a two-top next to one of the only couples in the entire restaurant. During our meal (which was outstanding), we heard several other couples within our vicinity complaining about the same exact seating issue.

The structure in which the restaurant is housed is beautiful, so the ambience is palpable. However, those few tables in the middle of the room--where the hostess was trying to seat us at the top of our meal--stick out like a sore thumb. They are basically a wedding bench which forces you to sit next to your company and watch as the rest of the establishment tries to figure out how truly uncomfortable you must be.

The food and service was excellent, and we warmed up to the place as our dinner progressed, but that first few minutes was really awkward. My girlfriend had the tuna, I had the pork chop, and we shared the small antipasto, all of which were wonderful. We would definitely return but will be strongly asking for a normal table ahead of time.

JM
1 review
Dined on 1 September 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Excellent food and service. Great atmosphere. New favorite restaurant

j
New York Area
15 reviews
Dined on 31 August 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Excellent food and service- great bar atmosphere and dinner was fantastic!!

MM
New York Area
2 reviews
Dined on 30 August 2019
Overall 5food 5service 4ambience 5

Great food and atmosphere. It was crowded because of the Nerds Concert so that impacted the service a little but it was still very good. Definitely recommend!

VF
New York Area
1 review
Dined on 25 August 2019
Overall 4food 5service 2ambience 4

Food offered on the buffet was very good & high quality. Unfortunately the service was poor. Ours server said we get eggs with buffet but only option was scambled or fired, no overseasy/hard, omelet not even with cheese ??) for $40/pp omelet should have been available. Server offered to toast a bagel, brought it to the table burnt.. We had an empty table next to us and to placed our dirty plates on it as no one came to bus the table or refresh the water. maybe service wil be better next time ???

a
New York Area
2 reviews
Dined on 21 August 2019
Overall 2food 2service 2ambience 2

Arrived on time with a reservation. Hostess was on the phone, put the call on hold to greet us and then, instead of seating us first, went back to finish her call for another 5 minutes while we stood there waiting.
There were lots of flies around our corner table. . We asked to be moved, but hostess said no. And it turns out there were plenty of empty tables that never filled up during our meal.
Restaurant was not busy, yet after we placed an order for a shrimp appetizer special, was told they ran out. How do you run out of a special when there’s hardly anyone there?
Ordered the Bibb salad which was supposed to have peaches in it, was only given one small piece of peach in my entire plate. I would’ve said something to my server, but she never once came over to ask how our food was.
This restaurant is so poorly run and management seems non-existent.

s
New York Area
8 reviews
Dined on 18 August 2019
Overall 3food 4service 5ambience 3

Parking was horrific; if something was going on at the restaurant or Monmouth Park, the person who called to confirm the reservation for that evening should have said something OR valet parking should have been provided for restaurant guests. Also, very hot day and the a/c wasn't adequate. Usually, we freeze in restaurants during the summer (we come equipped with sweaters or shawls). The woman at the next table had a personal fan that attached to her iPhone to help her keep cool.

Food was delicious, BUT my premium liquor martini was small and the glass wasn't full. And I needed this after the lack of parking debacle!

C
New York Area
53 reviews
Dined on 18 August 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Second time at Blue Grotto this month. Our favorite place. Always consistent. Good portions, excellent service. Valery is fantastic.

PF
New York Area
6 reviews
Dined on 17 August 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

One of Monmouth Counties best restaurants.

GS
New York Area
1 review
Dined on 17 August 2019
Overall 4food 4service 3ambience 4

Nice atmosphere..good food..better than expected..give it a try

RW
New York Area
65 reviews
Dined on 16 August 2019
Overall 5food 5service 4ambience 5

Consistently consistent. They never seem to disappoint. Really like the burrata as well as short rib meatballs for starters. They have an excellent wine list and always have our table available without having to wait. Perfect in the summer when you can sit outside.

AL
New York Area
3 reviews
Dined on 15 August 2019
Overall 4food 4service 3ambience 4

Ate outside on deck....summer night.
Band was playing and that added a nice element to the dinner.
Service/ help was stretched - one server for too many tables.

PC
1 review
Dined on 13 August 2019
Overall 4food 4service 5ambience 5

Great atmosphere for a business lunch. Not too noisy, my comfortable setting. Food was good, could have used a bit more seasoning. Overall- good value

RA
New York Area
1 review
Dined on 10 August 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Our server Susan was great. Food was excellent

C
New York Area
54 reviews
Dined on 10 August 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

We love Blue Grotto. Food is excellent with good portions. Service always top knotch. Our server Valery was great.

NY
New York Area
4 reviews
Dined on 9 August 2019
Overall 3food 3service 5ambience 5

The food was mediocre at best. Ambience and service were great.

s
New York Area
24 reviews
Dined on 9 August 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

The food was amazing. Delicious and innovative. The service was friendly and accommodating. This is definitely one of my "go to" places, especially for special occasions. The view is lovely and if you're not in the mood for a gourmet meal, the outside area has more casual menu choices, so it depends on your purpose for dining (or your wallet) on that particular night. By the way, the drinks were excellent. I had a glass of the white wine and it was delicious and perfectly cooled.
Love this place!

MT
1 review
Dined on 4 August 2019
Overall 4food 5service 5ambience 4

Very unusual dining experience on a Sunday late afternoon/evening in August. There are two different outdoor bar cocktail areas and another one indoors. The Beer Garden on ground level had a lot of activity while a band was playing. We chose to have cocktails on the upstairs outdoor patio which was more subdued but you could still hear the band playing. We then had dinner indoors in a lovely room with expansive views. The service was excellent. The food was very tasty and prepared as we requested. We ordered the Salmon and the Garganelli Bolognese. Excellent presentation. Both were delicious.

y
New York Area
1 review
Dined on 4 August 2019
Overall 3food 4service 2ambience 3

There was not enough wait staff. We were seated and waiting to be greeted and even offered water. We recieved our drinks after half an hour. Servers were very busy setting up the buffet they couldnt attend to guests. Hostess should offer water, coffee or drinks when we are seated.

d
New York Area
21 reviews
Dined on 4 August 2019
Overall 3food 3service 2ambience 4

We were a bit disappointed. We were under the impression that the cost for brunch included a few made to order items and were told when we arrived that you were only offering one, because it was too much work. If that is the case, the price should have been lowered. I asked for Tea and was told I would have to pay extra. Tea is the least expensive item to serve! The Bacon was practically raw and the food was cold. Many items were gone before we even got up to the buffet. We arrived at 11:00 and had to wait for the food to be put out. How could it be cold and nearly gone? It also would be nice if there were signs telling us what each food item was. Many people have allergies and need to know what they are eating. The service was also an issue. We were brought the wrong items many times and had to wait a long time for coffee and drinks. We understand that there was an event at the track this day and that was part of why they were having difficulties, but there really shouldn't have been so many problems. We will give the restaurant one more try, but not for brunch.

a
New York Area
11 reviews
Dined on 2 August 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 4

This was our 2nd time at Blu Grotto. The food is outstanding!! We started with the calamari, meatballs and the melted pecorino delicious. For dinner we had steak, pasta casa e pepe and bolanese it was wonderful and for dessert affogato 👌🏼. The service was excellent both times we’ve been like above and beyond excellent. We sat outside and the band was very loud so I think I prefer inside when having a date night or family meal where you want to talk. If just having dinner and would like to listen to the band the deck is great.

PM
New Orleans
4 reviews
Dined on 28 July 2019
Overall 4food 4service 5ambience 2

We enjoyed the Blue Grotto but after being at the track all day we were looking forward to a nice cool relaxing dinner. Loved the round room but had to move-- sooooooo very hot! Not good for eating when hot! Food, service was excellent. Asked and told air conditioner not working up to standards! Please fix the air! Told all others who were thinking of going-- make sure to call and ask-is the air working?

NO
New York Area
17 reviews
Dined on 28 July 2019
Overall 5food 3service 5ambience 3

We weren't looking for a brunch on Sunday and sadly that is all we were able to have. That was the only thing we would have liked, to be able to order off a lunch menu. We'll still be coming back.

OT
New York Area
2 reviews
Dined on 27 July 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 4

We were outside listening to the live band so for me the noise level was great

AG
1 review
Dined on 27 July 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Food and service was terrific! I would highly recommend this to friends!!!!!!!! I would also def recommend to dine inside! It has a very pretty atmosphere! I can’t wait to go back!

OT
Tampa
4 reviews
Dined on 26 July 2019
Overall 4food 4service 4ambience 3

It was a lovely evening sat outside on the top deck. Band was playing in the beer garden and It was still light out. Ordered a nice bottle of rose to enjoy with our entree’s duck, tuna and branzino. All entree’s tasted good but it was very hard to see them now that it was dark out. They definitely need better lighting not only at the tables but on the stage. You couldn’t see the the band members very well since the stage is set towards the back of the property Theres a huge bright TV screen on the lawn too bright and maybe shouldn’t be on while the band is playing. Once the band finished they had to bring a car over and use the headlights as lighting so they could dismantle their equipment. All in all it’s a beautiful place and I would go back maybe earlier so I can see my meal.

D
New York Area
18 reviews
Dined on 26 July 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

I love everything about this restaurant!!!! It is absolutely wonderful. Service is superb, ambience is perfection, food is delicious!!!!!

L
New York Area
31 reviews
Dined on 23 July 2019
Overall 4food 4service 3ambience 3

The food was very good. The service was good. I started with the tuna tartar and had the short rib meatballs over polenta (an app) for my entree. There was more than enough food! The building is interesting. The main seating area is a large sun room with a high ceiling. Very pretty. However, it isn't warm and inviting and it could be. We were seated next to a party of 12 and it was difficult to hear.

l
Atlantic City
5 reviews
Dined on 21 July 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Like always : service and food was great. Hostess was great. Sorry To see Jill has move on. One of our favorite restaurant.

MD
New York Area
6 reviews
Dined on 20 July 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Great as always

n
New York Area
38 reviews
Dined on 14 July 2019
Overall 4food 4service 4ambience 5

great outdoor venue to see a band ......and the restaurant's is great too

RW
New York Area
65 reviews
Dined on 7 July 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Great Venue! Our experience was great from start to finish. Jill, the hostess, set the tone when we made the reservations and could not be more accommodating with our special request. The burrata appetizer is excellent as well as the short rib meatballs. Our entrees were very generous. The wine list is reasonable and the outdoor setting made a very pleasurable dining experience. We will be back.

MC
New York Area
6 reviews
Dined on 3 July 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Noted it was loud because they had a great band playing. Good food. Nice summertime spot to eat outside.

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