August 18, 2010
665 Monroe Avenue
Elizabeth, NJ 07201
  • Cost: $$$
  • Alcohol: Full Bar
  • Parking: Street
  • Take Out: Yes

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August 18, 2010


Not far from Newark airport (the neon Budweiser brewery sign glows like a harvest moon above the treetops) in a residential section of Elizabeth, Valenca is a hearty Portuguese steakhouse with big portions, great food, and plenty of neighborhood charm. The appetizers were enough for a full meal – stuffed scallops, clams on the half shell, calamari and the stand-out Portuguese Chourico – a delicious sausage served flaming at your table. The many meat and seafood entrees are all large enough to feed more than one. Valenca’s signature dish – Filet Mignon on a Stone – means the dining room fills with a buttery steam cloud from patrons grilling hunks of raw beef on individual trays with a sizzling stone, garlic butter and a lemon wedge. You can also order Tuna on a Stone. The paella and seafood Cataplana are excellent.

Valenca fills up with local families and couples; reservations recommended. The dining rooms are attached to a full bar with some banquet/catering rooms upstairs. Service is efficient, but a little slow when crowded. Headed here with family to celebrate my wife’s birthday last week (looking younger every day), and enjoyed a wonderful meal.


One Response to “Valenca”

  1. […] Elizabeth, New Jersey was the Colonial port where both Alexander Hamilton and Aaron Burr attended prep school and where George Washington boarded the ferry to his 1789 presidential inauguration in Manhattan. Today, the City of Elizabeth, county seat of Union County, is New Jersey’s fourth largest city and one of the state’s most ethnically diverse communities, boasting residents born in some 70 countries. The city’s multinational population makes Elizabeth one of the best places in New Jersey to find wide ranging global cuisines. Elizabeth is home to excellent Colombian, Peruvian, and Central American food, a fantastic Latin American take on the traditional Jersey diner, longstanding Italian favorites like Santillo’s and Spirito’s, iconic spots like Tommy’s Italian Sausage and Hot Dogs, and Portuguese institutions like Valença. […]