This story first appeared in TAPinto West Essex.

The Conforti family, owners of Angelonis in Caldwell and Woodridge as well as Michaels in Nutley, opened its highly anticipated gastropub The Brook Tap House last month at 811 Passaic Avenue in West Caldwell. 

According to owner Mike Conforti, his brother, Chef Nick Conforti, brings extensive culinary experience to the table with mouth-watering starters like candied bacon and “All Thriller No Filler” crabcakes as well as classic favorites like calamari and nachos with ground beef or pulled pork. The main menu includes signature dishes like panella bread grilled cheese, braised short rib with frizzled onions and gruyere cheese and a T-Rex Tomahawk Steak. Also on the menu is a 14-inch “Thinny Thin Bar Pie,” made famous at Conforti's Caldwell restaurant Angelonis.

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The chef pointed out that all the burgers are freshly ground daily and made with a tri-blend of black angus, short rib and brisket served on a homemade brioche bun. He added that the restaurant will do its best to serve produce only from local farms, as the family firmly believes in the quality and taste of farm fresh to table.

Nick also noted that the menu includes many gluten-free options, such as a beet salad with baby spinach, almonds, cranberries, red onion, grape tomatoes, balsamic vinaigrette topped with ricosalata (an Italian cheese) and the “Sick Azz Truffle Fries.” Some menu items can also be prepared gluten free upon request.

The brothers agreed that another standout on the menu is The Brook Tap House signature dish “From Land to Sky,” which includes three sliders — beef cheeseburger, pulled pork and buffalo chicken — paired with a flight of beers that the customer can select from the various craft beers on the menu.

According to Mike, the extensive beer menu includes many craft brews from New Jersey and Upstate New York, including Icarus, Brix City Brewing and Kane Beer, as well as German lagers. He also noted that there are gluten-free beer options in addition to the full bar.

Mike and his family looked forward to hosting happy hours with food and drink specials in the near future. 

Irma Conforti, a lifelong resident of Essex County, said her family is extremely enthusiastic about bringing this new kind of restaurant to the area. Irma designed both the interior and exterior of The Brook Tap House, which includes a wood bar and walls as well as farmhouse decorative touches.

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