As the weather turns warm, the streets fill back up with residents and workers in cozy Summit. The downtown of the leafy Wall Street suburb has become a 'mini Manhattan', bustling with shoppers, residents, and corporate types perched among the elegant buildings strewn throughout the downtown.

The new migration of the New York set into the town has brought with it a thriving restaurant scene to appeal to the taste buds of these very discerning palettes. The HAT Tavern -- located on the lower level of the historic Grand Summit Hotel -- is proud of its place among the scene just off the downtown.

“We have our own little spot just off the downtown, and we cherish the location,” says HAT Tavern General Manager Walter Curtis. “We enjoy a very loyal clientele who are devoted to what we do well. Provide great food, great service, and a great environment to enjoy both. We know what we are good at, and we don’t try and do the things we recognize we’re not good at.”

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What The HAT has been exceptionally good at since opening five years ago is providing delicious comfort foods in a warm, inviting setting where -- like they say in Cheers -- “Everybody knows your name.” After operating for years as The Hunt Club, the change was at first off-putting to some, but welcomed by many. In time, even the Hunt Club loyalists realized that while the fare was different, the bones of the original team behind the food was in place. Once the product was experienced, the guests followed.

As the thermometer metrics climb, residents who enjoy the luxury of being within walking distance to the tavern make their way through the streets. Not many towns offer a great tavern steps from your home, maintained by a management team serious about the neighbors’ comfort. The HAT’s famed outdoor patio will fill quickly, so get there early on days like next Wednesday when the mercury takes a run at 80.

This season’s new additions to the menu are the brainchild of Executive Chef Charles Burke and Banquet Chef Michael Meola. You will see from the descriptive below that they should not disappoint!

BACON JAM BURGER

Candied Bacon, Brie Cheese, Bacon-Onion Jam, Served on Crisscross Roll

ITALIAN SAUSAGE & EGG BREAKFAST SANDWICH

Italian Sausage, Cream Cheese & American Cheese on French toast

Powdered Sugar Coat, Served with Jersey Shore Fries

JIM CRAMER’S SMASH BURGER

Two Smashed Quarter Pound Patties with American Cheese

Lettuce, Tomato, Onion, Guldens Mustard & Heinz Pickle Relish

IPA SHREDDED CHICKEN SANDWICH

Shredded IPA Beer Can Chicken Breast with Natural Chicken Jus on Pretzel Roll

Lettuce, Tomato, Pickle, Jersey Shore Fries

WARM SPINACH & ARTICHOKE DIP

Vegetable Chips

“We care about what our guests like and we take their feedback seriously,” offers long time Executive Chef of The Grand Summit Hotel Charles Burke. “We hope that these latest offerings to the menu convey our commitment to having fun items on the menu, that kids and adults will enjoy. Our friends and family eat here a lot, and like our very loyal customers, their feedback is very important to us.

The bar in the HAT Tavern remains the focus of the popular restaurant, and under the leadership of Assistant Manager Maggie McGuire and head bartender Scott Robertson, the nightly drink specials and new additions to the constantly changing beverage menu will be on full display all spring.

We hope to see you soon.