HOLY MOLE at Chapala Grill – Column by Rosemary & Thyme

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Welcome everyone to the first installment of Rosemary and Thyme’s reviews. We’re just two foodies living in the Lake Hopatcong area who love to explore all the local bars, restaurants, and shops.  We are not paid reviewers, just two friends that LOVE delicious food, shopping, and the lake life!

So welcome aboard for our first official review. Our travels took us to an adorable little place in the Woodport area of Jefferson Township.  Chapala Grill is located at #161 NJ Route 181 Lake Hopatcong, NJ.

3 thumbnail IMG 3395Although indoor seating is not available at this time, you will be able to admire the beautiful colors and artwork as you walk through the dining area to the outdoor tables at the rear of the building. The outdoor dining area, while spacious and spotless, was quite crowded with diners of all ages (but don’t worry, everyone was still able to maintain social distancing). As soon as we were seated, homemade chips and salsa were delivered to our table by a friendly, mask-wearing server.

4 thumbnail IMG 3396The menu has choices galore! We decided on two items from the specials menu that evening, Tostones Kabob and Mexican street corn, for our starters. The Tostones Kabob are double-fried green plantain slices topped with skirt steak, caramelized onions & chipotle mayo. The street corn is grilled fresh corn on the cob with Mexican sour cream, fresh crumbled cheese, and chili powder. Let me tell you!! What great starts to what turned out to be an amazing meal.

8 thumbnail IMG 3400Thankfully, we shared these delicious morsels since we also ordered main courses of Pollo En Mole, chicken in a homemade mole poblano sauce, and Tampiquena, a perfectly cooked skirt steak with an enchilada of your choosing in a green tomatillo sauce. Both dishes were served with rice and refried beans. The mole sauce was rich and silky with hints of chocolate and a little spice that pleasantly crept up on you. The skirt steak was cooked and seasoned perfectly and absolutely melted in your mouth.  The salsa verde was a light, bright freshness that balanced the richness of the cheese enchilada. Even though at this point, we were full beyond capacity, our knowledgeable server sweet-talked us into the fried banana chimichanga for dessert. A banana wrapped in a flour tortilla, deep-fried and coated in cinnamon and sugar. Then taken to the next level with a scoop of vanilla ice cream drizzled with honey and chocolate sauce. Yes, it was as amazing as it sounds.

11 thumbnail IMG 3404So, we have to say our overall experience was excellent. From top-notch service (they refreshed our drinks before we even had a chance to ask) to a spotless dining area, outstanding food, and plentiful portions, we thoroughly enjoyed our dining experience and highly recommend this new gem around the lake.

We hope you enjoyed our first review. We certainly enjoyed ourselves.  Please keep an eye out in the Hopatcong Lake Regional News for more to come.


Rosemary & Thyme

 To Reach Rosemary and Thyme: RosemaryandThyme.lakelife@yahoo.com


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