About 20 yards from the flagpole in downtown Mystic, you’ll find Anthony J’s Bistro – a cozy Italian restaurant. On a crisp fall day, you can sit outside on the heated patio, or inside the quaint building full of exposed stone and eclectic artwork.
We came back to Mystic to visit Anthony J’s for our October restaurant feature. AJ’s Bistro is a great local spot to warm up with food, drinks, and good company as the weather cools down.
Arriving at Anthony J’s in the late afternoon, just as the lunch menu was changing to happy hour and dinner menus, we took a seat inside. We started off with two soups – the minestrone and a pumpkin soup of the day. Both were flavorful and warming. The happy hour menu includes a long list of appetizers, including the famous veal meatballs in san marzano tomato sauce and mini crab cakes, both of which were delicious. We wrapped up with a gorgonzola pizza, with roasted peppers, pears, fig coulis and arugula.
For the month of October, Anthony J’s featured a prix fixe menu for both lunch and dinner. Lunch featured soup and half a panini for $9. The dinner prix fixe menu consisted of three courses for $35. Choices for the first course included caesar salad, mussels marinara, broccoli, rabe, or grilled mozzarella. For the second course, choices included penne alfredo, spinach gnocchi, chicken parmesan, and chicken marsala. Third course had choices of crème brûlée, mud pie, or cannoli. Anthony J’s does a wonderful job switching up features and specials throughout the year, encouraging customers to try new things while keeping a menu full of favorites.
Meals begin with fresh ingredients, quality seafood and meat, and feature Italian recipes and housemade desserts. Daily specials can be found on the blackboard. At the bar, choose from the renowned wine cellar, international beer selection, or speciality drink.
Anthony J’s also features Hot Rocks on the menu, a unique way of cooking using imported stones from Italy. The rocks are heated to 650 degrees, and brought to the tables for you to cook seafood, steak, or chicken to your liking. These interactive dishes always bring laughter to the table, and fill the whole restaurant with mouth-watering scents.