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Friday, March 24, 2017

Teaneck—Many local residents have come to know The Teaneck Doghouse as a part of Teaneck’s much admired, varied kosher restaurant landscape. It’s a casual, fun hangout to sit, talk and eat with friends and family over a couple of beers or a cocktail, and maybe take in a game as well, on one of the eatery’s 28 flat screens. The staff and partners have gotten to know their customers and have started to cement their place as a community restaurant and a great choice for small groups to get together. “A whole side of the menu is now perfect for sharing,” said Jonathan Gellis, one of The Doghouse’s partners. He mentioned that more appetizers, more items that can be “shared or ordered for the table,” have been added specifically because of customer demand.

“We noticed people wanted to try things, and they wanted to sit and enjoy in a more casual way than in a traditional restaurant where you order your appetizer and entree and then leave,” he said. To that end, the newest and, literally, hottest menu item is a soft and eminently shareable pretzel, served freshly baked and steaming, made by caterer turned pretzel-challah maven Yoni Siletski. Yoni’s hot pretzels, which arrive at The Doghouse par-baked and are finished to order at the restaurant (order them when you sit down!), are served salted and whole, but are big enough for a least three people to share. They are served alongside a homemade sweet honey mustard dipping sauce.

Pretzels naturally go great with the more than 50 beers available at The Doghouse at any one time. In addition to bottles, “We have 14 on tap at all times and we are constantly rotating between about 20 different taps,” said Gellis. Most-popular beers are the Sam Adams seasonal selections, Founders Porter, La Chouffe and Blue Moon, the last two of which are Belgian white ales. Also on tap is Strongbow hard cider. Anyone with questions about any type of beer on the menu should ask the manager, Mendy Mark, who has a seemingly encyclopedic knowledge of kosher spirits and can always recommend a beer or mixed drink to go with a particular dish. Anyone who has had a tough day at work and wants something strong should most certainly go with a shot of Ambush, which is “the kosher version of Fireball,” he said.

Those who have always shared The Doghouse’s wings but hankered for a “a little more meat,” said Gellis, will love the sticky drumsticks, which are served in a special sweet and spicy secret (and sticky) sauce. Wash that down with a Bourbon Smash, which is made with Knob Creek bourbon, maple syrup, fresh lemon, orange juice and club soda.

Those interested in more sharing options will enjoy trying three new and fun types of egg rolls, each with its own dipping sauce: southwestern, brisket and spicy chicken with avocado. Try these with a refreshing Corona, a Corona Light or a Modelo Especial.

Favorites on the menu that have always been perfect for sharing continue to be the beef poppers (“like General Tso’s chicken, but beef, and spicier,” said Gellis), the ’Gator tenders, which are The Doghouse’s top-selling menu item, regular chicken tenders and all the sliders, which are served four to an order. They include not just hamburgers sliders but also the options of pulled brisket, fried chicken and meatball, or any combination thereof. Everyone knows American beers go best with hamburgers, so be sure to try one of The Doghouse’s American microbrew bottles.

Other new favorite shared items are chips and salsa (always a winner with a blueberry mojito or a jalepeño mango margarita!) and the onion tumbleweed, which is basically one big, tangled and yummy onion ring. Try that with a “Doghouse Rum Punch” cocktail, which is made from Jumbie’s tropical-infused rum, grenadine, orange and pineapple juices.

A new sandwich not specifically for sharing but one that’s new and different is the barbecue meatloaf burger, which takes the flavors of barbecued meatloaf, but is instead shaped into a burger and placed on a classic brioche bun. “We took those mildly spiced flavors of meatloaf and made it into a burger and people just loved it,” said Gellis.

Other customer requests have included lighter menu items, and specifically wraps. Therefore, all four new wraps on the menu are sliced and perfect for sharing as well. Wrap varieties include veggie, grilled chicken, buffalo chicken and sliced steak. But don’t take in your waistline just yet; they’re all served with The Doghouse’s flavorful and addictive fries. While sharing a wrap or two, try a Raspberry Cosmo or Southern Lemonade, or, for something a little sweeter, try a “Jolly Rancher,” which is made with Cavoda, Peach Schnapps, Apple Pucker, sour mix and cranberry juice.

The Teaneck Doghouse is located at 1415 Palisade Avenue, in Teaneck. Hours are Sunday though Thursday 11 a.m-12 a.m, Friday 11 a.m.- 3 p.m. and Motzei Shabbat 8:30-12 a.m. Call 201-530-7733 or visit http://www.teaneckdoghouse.com. Certified kosher by Rabbi Zushe Yosef Blech, Hasgachat Kashrus of Kehillas Bais Ben Zion, Monsey, New York.

By Elizabeth Kratz