By Dane Feldman
Photo by Dane Feldman.
Over the course of the past nine months, The Office Beer Bar & Grill has become one of my go-to late-night spots when I am in New Jersey (which is, of course, most of the time). The Office has six locations and I have been to two of them so far. This review focuses specifically on the Summit, NJ location on Union Place.
The Office offers a regular menu, a takeout menu, a party platter menu, a happy hour menu, and a drinks menu.
The happy hour menu is something special because it not only includes discounted drinks, but also includes discounted food like disco fries, wings, and grilled bar pizza.
The food in general at The Office is a combination of comfort food, classic bar food, and gastropub fare all for quite a reasonable price. Items include Ahi Tuna Tacos (topped with fresh arugula, cucumber, and cilantro with a wasabi vinaigrette), Southern Fried Chicken (served with coleslaw and fries), and the Memphis Burger (topped with pulled pork, cheddar cheese, coleslaw, and crispy onion straws on a toasted potato roll). The menu certainly runs the gamut.
I haven’t made use of the takeout menu or party platter menu, but it’s certainly something to keep in mind.
Even for suburban New Jersey, the cocktail list doesn’t necessarily blow me away at The Office, but the drinks are slightly creative: Mr. Finnegan’s Fix contains Jameson, ginger beer, and fresh lemon juice, which is a drink I would certainly make myself (though I would replace the Jameson with bourbon). It isn’t the cocktails, or even the 15+ wines, but actually the beer.
Of course, this makes sense because The Office is a self-proclaimed beer bar. It is to be expected that the restaurant goes above and beyond when it comes to beer. The establishment offers over 20 beers by the bottle and over 20 beers on tap. The beers on tap rotate by season and include everything from shandies to stouts.
For a mere $7, patrons can try a flight: five different beers on tap in 4.5 ounce glasses. When it comes to hoppy IPAs, I have trouble finishing a whole beer, so I miss out on a lot of the ones my friends enjoy. The flight gives me the opportunity to take a couple swigs and try different flavors out without feeling like I have to finish a whole one.
The Office has a big restaurant space, an outdoor seating area, and a big bar space as well. The booths in the bar are comfortable enough to sit in all night long and, thanks to the laid-back wait staff, patrons can certainly do just that.
This is a great spot and seems to attract crowds in their mid-20s to mid-50s. It isn’t the type of place to wow you because nothing about it is over the top. It’s an ol’ reliable kind of bar with young, knowledgeable employees and enough televisions on the wall to watch every sporting event as they go live.