Newark, NJ 07105
- Cost: $
- Credit Cards: All Major
- Alcohol: Full Bar
- Parking: Private Lot
- Take Out: Yes
June 24, 2013
If I lived in the Ironbound section of Newark, not only would I weigh quite a bit more, I would probably spend too much time at Krug’s.
Krug’s Tavern has been on EthnicNJ’s list of burger places to try for some time. The bar, owned by the LaMotta family (related to the former boxing champion, Jake La Motta, of Raging Bulll fame), is an Ironbound institution serving widely praised burgers, along with cheesesteaks, calamari, hot roast beef (Tuesdays and Thursdays), shrimp platters and other bar fare, since 1932.
The brick exterior facing Wilson Avenue makes Krug’s look like a dive bar from the outside. Don’t hesitate to enter through the black door under the neon sign. Inside, Krug’s offers a comfortable bar area, with a larger dining room in the back.
Krug’s famous 12-ounce burgers are cooked like sliders (smashed on a hot griddle), but have the diameter, if not the thickness, of pub-style burgers. Krug’s burgers are served on a similar-sized soft, sesame-seed bun for an appropriate bun to burger ratio. Cheeseburgers, California and Pizza burgers are available. I could not resist ordering the “Taylorham Burger,” for a salty compliment to the beef. Each burger is preceded by a sliced pickle and a hot cherry pepper, a nice touch. Krug’s makes a very good burger (ordered medium-rare, of course) that is moist, but not dripping when you bite into it.
Krug’s is also a nice place to order a beer, with friendly servers who seem to know most of their customers. The patrons on the Thursday night I visited reflected the neighborhood – blue collar and white collar, with some Portuguese being spoken. The Ironbound is one of the best places in NJ for Portuguese and Brazilian food. Krug’s is an old school bar worth a visit for its ambience and burgers. Yet another reason to head to Newark.
(Full disclosure: I visited Krug’s while waiting to pick up my teenage daughter from a Taylor Swift concert at the Prudential Center. I’d like to think most Krug’s patrons have never heard a Taylor Swift song.)