RESTAURANT REVIEW – JUNIPER HILL – a culinary genius in our midst

http://www.juniper-hill.com/

73 Beaver Avenue  Annandale, NJ, 08801 908.335.8905

Currently open for Dinner Service only: Tuesday-Sunday  The Bar & Patio: 3pm-close Dining Room: 5pm-close

 

Josh DeChellis is a master chef and he is living and working here in Hunterdon to the delight of many who have discovered his Juniper Hill Creation in Annandale.

We had the ultimate pleasure of sitting down for a run through if his most popular dishes and upon conclusion I am happy to say that it was one of the finer meals of my lifetime

We are blessed in the Huntedon/Somerset/Morris area with many top notch chefs and we are proud to put DeChellis right there with the best of them.

One thing you should know from the outset, if you are someone with a palate that is best described as bland or day to day Juniper Hill is not for you. To get the full appreciation of this man’s unique talents you must be prepared to try items that are a bit out of your usual milieu. Think of dining at JH as an adventure, an opportunity to expand the depths of your culinary experience and you will be overjoyed that you did.

To start try the Octopus A La Planacha, simply divine and cooked to perfection. If you order from the bar menu the Grilled Pork Cheek Rice Bowl is heavenly and something you can go back to again and again. If you tend to lean towards a more vegetable featured menu the Salad of Local Salt roasted Beets popped with extraordinary flavor and the sliced Persimmon salad was equally pleasing.  If you want a special treat try the Sliced Maine Diver Sea Scallop Crudo, which was one of my favorites of the evening, this dish put an enormous smile on my face and truly made me realize I was experiencing something special.

Now if you are a true lover of a great dining experience you know enough to order the special of the evening and at Juniper Hill this rings true. If the Chef has decided he wants to put extra attention into a dish that they do not create regularly and you pass up the opportunity you are quite frankly being foolish. Let him challenge his skill set. I learned this lesson many years ago from a friend who was skilled enough to be a James Beard award winner and it rarely fails to provide for a wonderful evening.

From the regular main plate menu try the Blackened Yellow Fin Tuna, just delicious, or the Knob Creek Barrel Roasted Prime NY Strip Steak which will absolutely melt in your mouth.

If you happen to have room for dessert, the young lady who showed up on Josh’s doorstep and impressed him so much that he hired her off the street makes delicious pastries. She brought us out a piece of pie that was simply stated amazing. Bravo.

I would also be remiss to not comment upon the staff. Starting with the bartender who you can see in some of the photos, everyone treated us wonderfully; they had smiles on their faces and truly welcomed everyone walking through the doorway which was nice to watch. We cannot thank them all enough.

In conclusion, if you are someone who enjoys a unique dining experience Juniper Hill is for you.  If you trust Chef DeChellis he will take you on a phenomenal culinary adventure that you will remember for a long time.  We are proud to welcome him into the local community as a true master of his craft.

Below we have put together a set of photos of the different dishes he serves, with the menu items and commentary placed in  between for your perusal, enjoy.

Josh DeChellis got into cooking inadvertently. Eager to save money for a new snowboard, DeChellis stepped into his first restaurant, where he found an unexpected passion for the industry. DeChellis followed this passion for food to The Culinary Institute of America in 1992. After graduation, he began his professional career as a chef de partie working at the Frenchtown Inn in New Jersey.

DeChellis then landed a position in San Francisco as sous chef at Wolfgang Puck’s famous Postrio. After three years, Puck sent DeChellis to France where he worked at two Michelin three-star restaurants: the famed L’Arpège andLucas Carton. DeChellis’s culinary horizons continued expanding at restaurants like Sumile, where helearned a respectful approach to original dishes that are both clean and purposeful, and Jovia. But when he took over the kitchen of New York’s famed La Fonda del Sol, his ability to fuse creative concepts and tradition really got the opportunity to shine.

Opening a restaurant in our hometown, among family and friends, has been a long-time dream of ours.  We grew up here; we love it here.

Two years ago we spotted the old bank and fell in love with the setting.  It sat vacant, but charming, on a wooded lot in Clinton Township and we immediately knew it would be our new restaurant.

Our hope was to create an extension of us—a way to share with our community our love for good food, good wine and good times.  It took a vision, a team of professionals and certainly some bumps in the road, but we did it.  It’s been a labor of love for sure, but after a lot of planning and months of construction, Juniper Hill is finally real and we look forward to sharing it with you.

Hope to meet you soon.

Named after its surroundings and nestled in the village of Annandale in Hunterdon County, New Jersey, Juniper Hill is a family-friendly restaurant and bar serving simple and seasonal food prepared by Chef/Owner Josh DeChellis.

Reservations are accepted for the main room, the private vault, or on the patio. The Bar, with large open-air windows and a fireplace, is walk-in only and is open Tuesday-Sunday from 3pm to close where you can enjoy our strong locally roasted coffee, American tapas, craft beer, wine and cocktails.

ADDRESS

Juniper Hill
73 Beaver Avenue
Annandale, NJ, 08801
908.335.8905

HOURS OF OPERATION

We are currently open for Dinner Service only: Tuesday-Sunday
The Bar & Patio: 3pm-close
Dining Room: 5pm-close
Expanded service coming soon – please check back for details.

THE FOOD AT JUNIPER HILL

Simple. Seasonal. Ingredient-forward. Our frequently-changing menu is designed to show off great, fresh ingredients. We have daily deliveries from local bakers and farmers, shop at our local farm stands and frequently take in the day’s catch fresh from the East coast. Our menu blends ingredients from around the world to deliver food you can feel good about eating, prepared with the best offerings from nearby farms and our carefully chosen purveyors.

BAR SNACKS

COCKTAILS

CHILDREN’S MENU

For our guests under age 11
(Includes a drink and a scoop of homemade ice cream)

Download our complete Children’s Menu menu (PDF).

GLUTEN FREE

WINE WEDNESDAYS

All wines by the glass are $7, beginning at 3pm-close.

APPETIZERS