Then there are the entries - sesame crusted yellowfin tuna, an espresso crust filet mignon with melted gorgonzola cheese, and honey soy marinated half roast duck.
Says owner Jerry Maher, who opened the grill on Sinatra Drive two years ago, "Hoboken has changed. We used to get transients, people out of college. They knew where the beer and shot joints were; we needed an upscale and higher-end restaurant. People are staying and starting families. I wanted something in line with Manhattan chic, with better food."
The sesame tuna and the espresso crust filet mignon ($22 and $31) are popular dishes, Maher said. They're certainly tastier than anything across the river. On a recent Thursday night, I and a friend stopped in to get our fill.
I had to try the 3 Forty Tini, of course, because what would the visit be without the house drink? It turned out to be delicious - sweet and citrussy, sure to impress even the ladies of Sex and the City, if they ever crossed the river. It was like drinking a tangerine. To be official, it contains: Stolichnaya Razberi, Malibu, Triple Sec, banana, and pineapple juice.
The place has 25 martinis on the menu ranging from candy apple to white chocolate. Thursday is half-price martini night. There's also a full wine list.
So, on to the appetizers.
We loved that brie in the raspberry syrup ($9) - it could have been dessert. Other delectable items ranged from the aforementioned yellowfin tuna three ways ($12), a homemade mozzarella tower, an attractive veggie treat with genuine ripe and yellow heirloom tomatoes ($9), shrimp quesadillas ($10), and lobster bisque ($10).
There is a complement of salads and sandwiches ($6 to $12), including hanger steak, grilled chicken, and sesame shrimp. There's even a Cuban sandwich ($10).
This place has variety, and everything we ate was delicious - as much a treat as a meal.
They also offer a raw bar with various types of oysters and shellfish platters. Pop six clams in your mouth at $1.50 each.
Then it was time for my friend and I to fill our bellies. The restaurant abounds with interesting, delicious fish and meat dishes, ranging from $21 to $31. We tried: a pungent sundried tomato and olive crust salmon with broccoli rabe and garlic mashed potatoes; pan seared Chilean sea bass with caramelized shitake mushrooms and truffle oil; the espresso crust 10 oz. filet mignon, and grilled lamb chops with whipped potatoes.
Not enough? Based on the filling, tasty dishes we sampled, I'm sure the veal chop, half roast duck, and cornmeal crust chicken breast are also delightful.
For pastas ($16-$19), there's homemade lobster ravioli in cognac cream sauce; shellfish Bucatini with shrimp, scallops, and other shellfish in a saffron tomato broth; Mezzi Rigatoni with chicken and wild mushrooms; and Cavatelli Toscano with sweet Italian sausage and broccoli rabe.
Drooling, aren't you?
Wait until you hear about dessert.
The dripping mud cake
We were served a tray of desserts, including a sumptuous bread pudding and banana beignets. I'm a banana fan, and these were the best.
But in the center was a beautiful round Molten Lava Chocolate Cake (mixed valrhona chocolates, warm liquid center, vanilla bean ice cream, $8). Much to my amazement, my friend sliced into it with his spoon, and a river of chocolate flowed out of it. He immediately spooned some into his mouth.
"What is that?" I asked.
"Heaven," he said.
The restaurant also has a lunch menu with many of the dinner items on it.
There is also a special brunch menu with a $20 special that includes two mimosas or Bloody Marys complimenting a choice of the following meals: steak 'n' eggs; eggs benedict; eggs Florentine (with smoked salmon); omelettes; banana nut pancakes; smoked salmon platter; and granola crust French toast.
3 Forty Grill is located at 340 Sinatra Drive (hence the name). Telephone is (201) 217-3406. Check them out at www.3fortygrill.com.