Door’s outside of Porta
Outside eating area
Rita and Mark sans vegan mozzarella
crossing over the bridge to Asbury Park
wearing his Nonna’s glasses
Porta is a pizza/pasta restaurant in Asbury Park, NJ. Per their own FAQ’s they are a “Contemporary, local, sustainable, Italian, American, everyman slow food” type of place. Per my own summary of the place “they are awesome”.
We just got home from our annual beach vacation in Ocean Grove, NJ which is the next town over, south, of Asbury Park. We ate at Porta one of our first nights in town at the suggestion of my brother in law. When we arrived at Porta it was PACKED and very loud. They have seating outside in an area that they call Porta National Park which is first come first serve and more casual. We were lucky enough to find a table out there right away and it worked out better for the kids. It was completely cool if they wandered around and played with the pebble floor.
I was very excited to see not 1 but 2 vegan main courses on their menu. 1 pizza and 1 pasta dish. The pasta dish, Vegan Succotash, is made with baby penne pasta, corn, green beans, cherry tomatoes, zucchini, white beans and basil. The pizza dish is called Rita & Mark and is topped with tomatoes, vegan mozzarella, vegan parmigiano, garlic, dried oregano, basil and extra virgin olive oil.
I ordered the pizza BOTH times we ate there that week. I asked that they not put the vegan mozzarella on. It was soy based which means it wasn’t Daiya but I still didn’t want it. When I asked what the vegan parmigiano was the waitress said “Oh it’s just nutritional yeast.” I nearly fell off the bench I was sitting on! THEY HAD NOOCH! I’m pretty sure the waitress thought I was nuts with how excited I was over the nutritional yeast. The pizza’s came and I wasn’t disappointed at all. It was delicious and exactly how I wanted it to be. Even Reno was going crazy over it. I just ordered the kids a tomato pie, no cheese, which they loved but she kept looking at mine and saying how good it smelled. I shared a few slices with her. When we went back for a second time I ordered 2 of the vegan pizza’s sans vegan mozzarella. One for me and one for the kids. (The pizza’s are personal size BTW.)
My only regret is not trying the pasta dish the second time we went. I’ll definitely be ordering it the next time we eat there.