Skip to content

A town square for an unsquare town

redbankgreen

Standing for the vitality of Red Bank, its community, and the fun we have together.

RED BANK: ‘GOURMET’ MAC ‘N CHEESE? YEP.

053114mac-attack-500x331-5989594The mac-and-cheese at Mac Attack. Abe Elkomey at the griddle, below. (Photos by Susan Ericson. Click to enlarge)

By SUSAN ERICSON

05314-mac-attack-1-220x139-8144333Mac Attack Gourmet Cheesery blew into Red Bank last month, displacing a short-lived burger joint. So are hamburgers out, and macaroni-and-cheese in?

Could be: the new kid in town is loud, sneaky and completely unexpected.

“I want to make simple food great and relatable – mac-and-cheese, grilled cheese –stuff you eat growing up,” says chef Abe Elkomey, who at the age of 23 is already accomplished in the kitchen. At 19, he came in second in a competition among New Jersey country club chefs, and has worked as sous chef at both the Bayonne Country Club and Satis Bistro in Jersey City.

“Even though we’re quick service, we cook to order,” Elkomey said. “Everything is fresh.”

mac-attack-052814-500x280-5013459Mac Attack’s grilled cheese and burger sandwich. (Photo by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge)

A few words about some sneaky surprises. The grilled cheese sandwiches are made on special bread from the Montclair Bread Company, where a French baguette is formed into a pullman loaf. The manchego-and-apple grilled-cheese sandwich came with basil leaves inside. Definitely a chef’s touch.

The macaroni and cheese is made with a mixture of cheeses. The lobster mac, for instance, has manchego and parmesan, with plenty of lobster. The southwest mac blends cheddar and pepperjack with jalapeno, corn, and a cornbread topping. It is just the right amount of spicy.

My only complaint about the macaroni and cheese is that it is too elegant to eat from a takeout container. Bring it home, serve it in a fine bone china dish and enjoy a crisp Sancerre with it.

The mac-and-cheese choices come in small or large, the least expensive being the traditional at $5, and the most expensive the lobster mac at $10 for the small and $16 for the large.

Elkomey and his brother, Hasan Elkomey, co-own the new Broad Street establishment with John Castiglione, who says he is on a mission.

“I didn’t want a lack of interaction with the customers,” he said. “Customer service will be friendly and involved.” He noted that the kids’ menu came at the suggestion of a mom in Montclair, where the trio opened the first Mac Attack last December. Red Bank is the second.

The grilled cheese sandwiches cost between $5.50 for traditional and $12.50 for the “show stopper,” which “you have to come ready for,” said Castiglione. It consists of two hamburger patties between grilled cheeses, with lettuce, tomato, pickle and aioli.

One suggestion: request the paprika aioli sauce with everything. It is what brings very good food to gourmet status.

Mac Attack’s hours are here. It offers free delivery.

Remember: Nothing makes a Red Bank friend happier than to hear "I saw you on Red Bank Green!"
Partyline
YAPPY TOGETHER
RED BANK: Look for this cutie pie, named Sacramento, at Yappy Hour on Broadwalk Saturday. He's looking for a new home.
YELLOW RAINCOAT DAY
On a rainy May morning, the only golden sight on Broad Street this morning were the matching raincoats of Eileen and her dog Benny.
STOP. JUST STOP.
RED BANK: For those who don't get the meaning of a stop sign, crossing guard Diane Johnson amplifies the message with some colorful outfits. ...
RECORDS SKIP INTO TOWN
RED BANK: Devotees of vinyl records expected to drop needle at Broad and Mechanic Saturday. Here's why.
Feline fortunes on Monmouth Street
Christopher Russell and feline pal Princess take in some fresh air on a warm May night Thursday in the doorway of Gina’s Psychic Bouti ...
GOING UP?
RED BANK: Public Library will be closed Friday for the start of elevator construction. (Click for more.)
TREEBIRTH
RED BANK: Replacement of nine trees gets underway on South Street, where a wholesale removal angered residents last September. (Click for mo ...
RIVERSIDE FLOW
New Jersey Flow Arts brings together jugglers, poi spinners, hoopers and more weekly in Riverside Gardens Park.
Honeybee swarm carted away
Beekeeper Tanya Ptak of Ptak’s Apiary inspects a swarm of honeybees that chose a flower pot in the courtyard of Red Bank Primary Schoo ...
BELOVED POISONED DOG PHOTO SURFACES
   
THREE ON TOUR
RED BANK: Three borough sites will participate in a weekend of self-guided tours of 52 historic locations in Monmouth County May 4 & 5.
VOLUNTEERS GET INTO THE WEEDS
Toting plastic trash bags, 51 volunteers conducted a walking litter cleanup on Red Bank's West Side Saturday.
“IT’S A PARTY AT WAWA!”
You wish you could vibe like Brian, who lives on the other side of Hubbard’s Bridge. He caught redbankgreen’s attention in Red B ...
POPE OKS ORATORY
RED BANK: St. Anthony of Padua obtains papal approval to establish Oratory of St. Philip Neri, a community of priests and brothers devoted t ...
RED BANK: NEW MURAL BRIGHTENS CORNER
RED BANK: Lunch Break founder Norma Todd is depicted in a mural painted this week on the front of the newly renovated social service agency.
TULIPS TOGETHER
Spring tulips taking in the sunset outside the Molly Pitcher Inn in Red Bank Monday evening.
RIVER RANGERS RETURN
River Rangers, a summer canoeing program offered by the Navesink Maritime Heritage Association, returns this summer for up to 20 participa ...
DOUBLE DYLAN IN RED BANK
Trucks for a production company filming what one worker said was a Bob Dylan biography have lined Monmouth Street the past two days with cre ...
AFTER THE RAIN
A pear tree branch brought down by a brief overnight storm left a lovely tableau on the sidewalk in front of Red Bank's Riverside Gardens Pa ...
CONE OF UNCERTAINTY
Asked by a redbankgreen reporter why these cones were on top of cars, the owner of the car in the foreground responded: “That’s ...