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Bites Nearby: The Watermark

Rooftop bar on the Asbury Park Boardwalk fuses a cocktail lounge with a casual after the beach place to get drinks and a quick bite

For a quick bite at the beach or a leisurely night of drinking and continual appetizers, The Watermark serves tapas with an amazing ambiance, with inside and outside seating that is primarily loungey-type couches.

With an amazing view, you might as well be on the beach, and some of their decor can also make you feel like you're in a forest somewhere.  They have an intense craft beer list, specialty cocktails and a list of "small bites" that's short and sweet, but can cater to many different taste buds.

They have a different special every day of the week, so while the cocktails can get a little pricey, it's still plausible to be able to drink and eat there on a budget.

My friend and I both ordered the Ban Mi Chicken Sandwich, made in a lemongrass marinade and served on Ciabatta bread with siracha mayonnaise and cucumber slaw. The refreshing tastes of the cucumber cuts the spice of the Siracha, and was quite tasty. 

My brother ordered the Smoked Flank Steak Skewers served with a roasted red pepper coulis, while our other friend order the Aristan Grilled Cheese sandwiches. You get served two different sandwiches, one with mozzarella, smoked gouda, tomato, and fresh basil served on brioche, and the other is made with goat cheese, bacon, and raspberry served on rustic bread. 

We also shared the gouda and hot cheddar cheese dip, served with tortila chips.  

They serve other unique dishes on their small menu as well, all with suggestions of what type of alcohol would taste best with the food you choose. The vegan soy skewers are of course one of the vegetarian friendly options, served seitan style with a tangy citrus 5-spice garlic pepper marinade (I was going to order this, but they were out of it that day — there's always next time). 

They also have Jumbo Lump Crab Cocktail, Lobster rolls, Ancho Chili Duck Tacos (with jicama slaw and avocado), Seared Jumbo Diver Sea Scallops with Tobiko over Soba noodles, and Spicey Seared Ahi Tuna served on a bed of edamame and drizzled with basil oil.

Their appetizer-type menu includes the previously mentioned cheese dip, an assorted cheese plate with toasted pita bread, spinach and artichoke dip, garlic hummus and crudites with toasted pita bread, unsalted raw nuts, bowl of assorted olives, and a brief dessert menu of carrot cake (mascarpone filling and Bourbon caramel sauce), macaroons, and caramel sushi rolled in dark chocolate. 

While the Watermark does cater to their drinkers with their extensive options, they perfect a short-and-sweet tapas menu that can satisfy anyone that's a little hungry.  

For information, visit www.watermarkap.com, call 732-455-3447 or just stop in.

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