By Liz Johnson

Pumpkin Pie Bites at Lambertville Station Restaurant and Inn.

Fall is more than just leaf changes, dropping temperatures and darker days. It’s also a change in palate, when ripe tomatoes and sweet corn are replaced by pumpkin and apples, squash and winter stews. Here are a smattering of favorites from Hunterdon Happening List Winners.

Before the temperatures drop, enjoy lunch by the canal at the Lambertville Station Restaurant and Inn, Hunterdon Happening List Winner for Best Outdoor Dining, with mouth-watering autumn additions such as Sweet Potato Gnocchi, sautéed in a sage brown butter with crisp local apples, pine nuts, finished off with crumbled goat cheese and a cider glaze or cold weather classic Beef Stew with tender beef and vegetables in a rich Burgundy sauce over mashed potatoes, finished with warm garlic bread. The  Wine Cellar and inside bar are back open for dining with limited capacity, perfect for those chilly evenings where you can warm up next to the fire place with a glass of wine or spend time with friends at the bar enjoying the atmosphere enhanced by Dolores Dragans’ Halloween-themed creations.


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If you’re looking for stick-to-your-ribs fall fare, try a turkey and brie panini, gumbo or short ribs from the National Hotel in Frenchtown, voted Hunterdon Happening List Winner for Best Kept Secret. The restaurant is open for both indoor and outdoor dining.

When your healthy self has a hankering this fall, stop at Grounded For Life Café in Clinton, voted Hunterdon Happening Best Healthy Restaurant, for some avocado toast with a pumpkin spice coffee or a sunshine kale quinoa salad with a matcha tea.

To satisfy your sweet tooth, try a fall-centric treat like vegan pumpkin cannoli, muffins or whoopie pies.


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Nothing says celebrating fall like a Frankenstein cake. Or try some Halloween cupcakes in place of candy this Halloween. They’re specialties at Chocolate in the Oven in Milford, Hunterdon Happening List Winner for Best Bakery. According to their Instagram page, they’ve even received a comment that they should be called “Pumpkin In the Oven” because of all their pumpkin treats!

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Looking for a Halloween activity to do with the kids? Order Halloween cookie kits. You can also support your candidate of choice with Trump or Biden cookies.

Pair a fall-themed cocktail at Juniper Hill in Annandale such as a Smoked Maple Sour cocktail or a Spiked Apple Cider with an appetizers such as the hand dipped ricotta appetizer on sesame sourdough with thai chili, olive oil and sea salt or crispy Kennebec potatoes services with hot sauce. The restaurant is the Hunterdon Happening List Winner for Best Appetizer. Check out the restaurant’s Thursday Farmer’s Market for seasonal fare throughout November.


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How could you go wrong with Gronsky’s Milk House’s pancake of the month: pumpkin with cinnamon butter? Warning, the pancakes are huge, so bring your appetite to this Happening List Winner for Best Breakfast located in High Bridge.


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Hunterdon Land Trust Farmer’s Market at Dvoor Farms in Flemington is a great place for stocking up on locally grown apples, cider, pumpkins, gourdes and various fall produce. This Hunterdon Happening Winner for Best Farmer’s Market is open through Nov. 22nd.

Fall flavors meet icy treats at JUST CHILL Frozen Yogurt Café, Hunterdon Happening List Winner for Best Frozen Yogurt. Favorites include  cider doughnut, apple pie, cinnamon bun, peppermint stick, eggnog, fist pumpkin and toasty marshmallow. The frozen treats come as fro yo, premium ice cream and gelato! If you’re in need of something warm to take the chill off, try the chocolate fondue.

And if you’d like a dessert to share with the family (Thanksgiving will be here before we know it!), consider ordering one of their delicious custom pies. For every custom pie sold between October 1 and November 21, Just Chill will be donating $5 to Claire Wranitz, a 9-year old who was diagnosed with leukemia this past summer. Just mention Claire when you place your order.

Platform One/CTO catering in Flemington has a popular twist on macaroni and cheese, adding Raclette to elbow macaroni for those cooler autumn nights when comfort food is in high demand. Or go healthy with a bowl of Zoodles with Pesto, yellow squash and zucchini strings cooks in garlic, white wine, spinach and a garlic basil coconut sauce. You can order take out or bring your own bottle to dine in at this Hunterdon Happening List Winner for Best BYOB.

Basil Bandwagon, Hunterdon Happening List Winner for Best Specialty Food Store, calls its October Smoothie “all of fall in one sip.” It’s loaded with bananas, oats, local apple butter, almonds, seasonal spices, apple juice, almond milk with a vegan caramel drizzle.It’s also taking orders for Thanksgiving meals that include turkey, stuffing, gravy, veggies and pie. Order deadline is November 16. Meals can be picked up at the store’s Flemington, Lambertville or Clinton locations. Gluten-free options are available.

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Order up a pot of meatballs or a hearty soup from Chef’s Table Tuttobene, now located in Whitehouse Station. For fall specials, follow the Facebook page to see when specials like butternut squash ravioli ricotta baked rigatoni and pumpkin Alfredo are being offered! The menu changes daily but rest assured that each meal is made from fresh, local ingredients, artisan cheeses and hand-selected meats at this Hunterdon Happening List Winner for Best Italian Food.


You haven’t lived until you’ve tried the Clinton House‘s pumpkin cheesecake with caramel and oat crumble. Another seasonal favorite is the prime rib served with Au Jus and horseradish cream. (Available Fridays through Sundays.) The Hunterdon Happening Winner for Best Steak is offering many of its entrees for curbside pickup. Indoor seating is available, although reservations are recommended.



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You MUST try our newest fall dessert, pumpkin cheesecake.

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