A taste of the Jersey Shore started for me in the summers when my family traveled from our Brooklyn home to Six Flags Great Adventure in Jackson. When I attended Fordham University years later, I met new friends who showed me their homes in Colts Neck and Spring Lake. Once I was married, we chose to raise our three darling daughters in Monmouth County. They had the wonderful experience of growing up surrounded by luscious parks, farms and exquisite beaches. Over the past 15 years my career has taken me throughout New Jersey meeting and interviewing hundreds of business owners, philanthropists, musicians, and celebrities. I have produced and hosted video content and wrote informative articles to share their stories on NJ Discover TV & Radio and other local publications. Two years ago, a Fordham friend reached out to me asking if I would be interested in being the Editor for Dining Out Jersey magazine in North Jersey. Without hesitation I jumped on the opportunity to edit and write for this prominent magazine. This summer, Paul Turpanjian, CEO and Publisher of DOJ, decided to launch a sister magazine for the Monmouth and Ocean County areas and call it Dining Out Jersey Shore. He gave me the title of publisher and I set out to introduce this classy and informative magazine to the Jersey Shore area. I could not have imagined the excitement and anticipation for this new publication, nor the immense endorsement from so many. I am humbled and thankful for all the support from my fiancé, my daughters, family, friends and colleagues. It really wasn’t too difficult to fill the vibrant, glossy pages of this new magazine. The restaurant industry has become an experience in itself. Now menus offer uniquely style dishes that give us so many options to order. Whether you choose healthy, decadent, international spices or warm homestyle recipes, you can find a restaurant menu that caters to your taste buds. Food photography has exploded on social media sites and in publications. There are so many TV food channels and dining websites that people engage with. Finally, visiting a restaurant has become a destination. Restaurant owners spend time and expenses designing their space with special lighting, music and décor in order to create a memorable experience for their customers. In this inaugural issue we spotlighted Chef David Burke, a New Jersey born celebrity chef and restaurateur. We spent the day with him to understand the dynamic discipline necessary to run 17 restaurants and businesses. We had a full and fabulous day! Subsequently, more than twenty chefs and owners have joined the pages of our newest magazine. I have discovered an exciting group of dedicated, intense, and brilliant people who are a part of this thriving industry. We met with mixologists, and foodie influencers. I talked with Dorothea Bongiovi of Jon Bon Jovi Soul Kitchen about the “pay it forward” model. Our fabulous writers have scoured the counties to spotlight some of the best places to dine out and eat at the Jersey Shore. I hope you enjoy reading it as much as I have enjoyed publishing a magazine and website that is dedicated to capturing the Jersey Shore Dining experience. Our aim is to tantalize your tastebuds and encourage you to explore more of the fine dining restaurants, local eateries, wineries, breweries and entertainment venues that give the Jersey Shore it’s indelible charm.
Tara Jean McDonald
Publisher Dining Out Jersey Shore