Category Archives: Scene & Heard

Get the scoop on New Jersey’s hottest and hippest places to see and be seen. From the trendiest fashions and most stylish shopping spots, to delectable dining and eclectic events, Hip New Jersey breaks down the best places to shop, socialize, wine and dine in the Garden State. With sneak peeks at everything you need to know to stay in vogue, #HipNJ exposes everything our beautiful state has to offer.

#HipNJ Ladies Night Out at The Kenilworth on 3/24!

#HipNJ is proud to announce our first-ever Ladies Night Out!

Join us at The Kenilworth for a fun-filled night of painting, food and fun!

Bottle & Bottega Central New Jersey will be on hand to guide you and your girls to paint an ultra cool chandelier painting, perfect for your office, walk-in and more! While you paint, nosh on delicious aperitivos made on premise by The Kenilworth‘s esteemed staff.

If you are single, this is the perfect opportunity to get your dating game right! We’ll have a beauty presentation by our skincare sponsor, NeriumAD, which will talk about the best products to keep your skin smooth and youthful. Meanwhile, the “New Jersey’s Matchmaker”, Julianne Cantarella, will dole out must-have dating advice you need in 2016.

Tickets are $50/person (plus cash bar). Call 973.521.7159 if you have any questions!

sweet & flour bakery

Sweet & Flour Bakery

#Hippers, if you’re looking for a new and yummy bakery for all your confectionary needs, Sweet & Flour is the place to go!

#HipNJ’s Natalie Spedaliere visited the Secaucus bake shop to meet the two close friends who teamed up to their dream a reality.

Gina Petruzelli and Dilian Sarmiento realized their passion for baking at a very young age, and have been running with the idea since.  The two girls have an amazing reputation in town and it’s not only for their amazing products! “We can never say no to customers,” says Dilian as she describes her love for giving back to the community.

Their mouth-watering menu includes mini cupcakes, cake pops and an assortment of pastries, cakes and cookies.

But be aware #Hippers, there may be a wait list soon for their delicious treats! They’re getting popular— fast.  People from all over the COUNTRY are calling S&F to satisfy their sugar craving!

“There is only so much our refrigerator and counter can hold right now because the demand is getting higher!” Gina exclaimed.

After trying the red velvet #HipNJ cake they whipped up for us, we can definitely confirm that the hype is LEGIT!

To learn more about Sweet & Flour and check out their menu, visit


Francesca Gourmet Foods Opens in River Edge

Welcome Francesca Gourmet Foods to the #HipNJ neighborhood!

The River Edge gourmet market features a vast array of prepared foods from around the world—with a focus on classic Italian fare—made fresh daily, along with a selection of artisanal products.

The 6,000 square foot space borrows its name from owner Keith Alliotts’ young daughter, and also pays homage to his Italian American roots. Francesca Gourmet Foods showcases various individual stations within the space, such as a live mozzarella-making booth, a rosticceria carved meat station—featuring prime rib daily—sandwich/panini bar, build-your-own salads, and seasonal soup, as well as a central counter featuring dozens of rotating gourmet dishes.

In addition to the prepared foods, a retail component offers an assortment of artisanal products such as imported oils, vinegars, spreads and jarred specialties, alongside fresh baked breads from Balthazar, cheeses from around the world, packaged pastas and more. Grab and go options are also available, including premade soups, sauces, salads and baked specialty items.

Francesca offers 30-seats to sit and enjoy food on-site, or quick and easy service to grab something and be on your way. The space was designed by Manning Design Group in Asbury Park, NJ, and has a rustic, farm to table feel, creating a warm inviting atmosphere. Blue and white imported ceramic Sicilian tile greet guests as they enter, while reclaimed wood is found throughout the space. Additional design elements include a hand-cranked prosciutto slicer imported from Italy, hand-painted signs, and a reclaimed barn door in the dining area.

“We will strive to make Francesca Gourmet Foods a place the community can count on to deliver fresh and delicious food prepared with love – a place one can drop by at anytime, whether for a quick bite on-the-go, to pick-up a delicious dinner for the family on your way home from work, or to assist with hosting that big holiday party,” said Owner Keith Alliotts. “We’re excited to be open and are looking forward to getting to know our customers, and becoming part of the neighborhood.”

While Alliotts brings expertise and a diverse background in commercial real estate to the table, he is joined by a team with vast experience in the restaurant industry. Helming the kitchen is Executive Chef Mike Matonti, who brings twenty years’ experience in the industry, having worked at Bergen County’s best restaurants including Café Panache and The Saddle River Inn.

Overseeing the day-to-day is Robert Anton, who serves as Director of Operations for the Francesca brand. Anton was previously with The Hillstone Restaurant Group, where he managed outposts across the country, including Los Angeles, Scottsdale, New York City and Hackensack, equating to twenty-five years of experience in top-tier management positions.   Also on the team is general manager, Mike Byrne, assisting Anton with operations. All four grew up in Bergen County and still call Northern New Jersey home.

Francesca Gourmet Foods is open Monday through Friday from 10:00AM to 8PM, and Saturday – Sunday from 10:00AM to 6PM. The team plans to launch a catering program in the coming weeks. For more information please visit, or call 201-678-1188. For social media, use Instagram and Twitter: @francescafoods or Facebook.