The typical career path involves insanely hard work when you're young, in the hopes of leisure time when you're older for family vacations/ditching those losers to hit the entire East Coast leg of the Loggins and Messina reunion. Reversing the trend, the guys behind Noble American Cookery
After 11 years at their seasonal (May-October) shore venture, Blue, the owners and James Beard-nominated chef're moving inland to focus on Noble, transforming the former Gioia Mia into an earth-toned 100-seater, thick with reclaimed wood from a 20' bar crafted from a single slab of Bubinga (African rosewood), to oak plank stairs leading to a second floor bathed royally in sunlight. Regionally sourced grub starts with a $12-max bar menu featuring the special-sauced Noble burger, braised mussels, fried pork belly, a poached shrimp tostada, and the "Bar Breakfast": deviled eggs and housemade scrapple (pairs great with a Bar Drink to dull the terror of just-what-the-hell-is-scrapple). Meanwhile, the dinner menu tosses out 15 starters, from grilled Portuguese sardines and Barnegat light sea scallops to pan-seared foie gras and batter-fried squid, while entrées include options both meaty (pan-roasted ribeye, grilled veal flank, lemon-braised shortrib, duck breast w/ blueberry smash) and aqua-meaty (rye-dusted black sable w/ mussel chowder, sautéed Pocono river trout, and poached golden tile -- if service is slow, tell your waiter to "turn this mother grout")
On the booze tip, North American offerings dominate the beer and wine list, while aggressively creative cocktails include the Chimayo (tequila, crème de cassis, apple cider), the TI Jean (rye, spearmint, ginger beer), and the rum/cognac/peach brandy/black tea Philadelphia Fish House Punch -- much pleasanter than the punch in the soul you'll feel when you find out seeing "Your Mama Don't Dance" live will run you $125.