Wood Fired Goodness at the Q

Q-Fire Grille, Wildwood’s newest hotspot, offers diners a taste of its eclectic contemporary cuisine amongst unbeatable panoramic views of the island’s surrounding water. Home to three extensive bars and South Jersey’s only outdoor wood fired brick pizza oven, the Q-Fire serves up an array of favorites.

The vision for the “Q” was born during a trip to Italy by owner/operator Alfonso Cuoco. While visiting family in Naples, Cuoco noted that several local residents and dining establishments were making the switch from gas cooking systems to old-time wood fired alternatives. Intrigued as to why they made the change, Cuoco simply sampled these wood fired dishes and was immediately made a believer.

The wood reinvigorated the Italian meat’s flavors, allowing Cuoco to experience the unique savory taste of wood fired cuisine. From then on, he was motivated to bring this sublime dining experience to the people of South Jersey.

The wood fired cooking trend has blossomed in California, some southern states, and more recently in North Jersey. But the Q-Fire has finally brought wood fired goodness to the streets of Cape May County and is slated to inspire dozens of followers.

Renowned head chef Phil Petitt infuses classic wood fired entrees, such as the Q’s famous Baby Backs, with a distinct Spanish influence. Petitt is a graduate of the prestigious Restaurant School in Philadelphia and has previously acted as head chef of Peaches in Cape May and opened several restaurants for Lamberti’s. He originally drafted more of a “fine dining” menu, but after a quick tour of North Jersey’s Portugese restaurant circuit with “Q” owner Alfonso Cuoco, Petitt was set on an almost entirely wood-fired menu. The result? Each Q-Fire dish offers a seamless blend of Brazilian, Italian, and Portugese cuisines.

The Q’s Paella is truly a taste of South America, featuring slow simmered local seafood and fire roasted chorizo with short grain rice in a saffron seafood stock. A real exclusive, it is the only wood-fired seafood paella served on the island. All other “Q-Signatures” are wood fired grilled over seasoned cherry, oak, and mesquite wood and served with a Spanish rice. Opt for the 14 oz. Porterhouse topped with asapargaus in a port demi wine glaze or the French Cut Pork Chop served with black bean and white corn salsa.

With its dog-friendly outdoor patio, the Q-Fire welcomes families to enjoy their meals alongside their beloved pets. The “Lil Q” Menu allows kids under ten years to dine for just $6.99. The great-value Q-Fix Menu offers diners a complete four course meal including soup or salad, appetizer, entrée, and dessert for just $20 from 4-6 PM. All “Q” cuisine is 100% homemade, including their selection of desserts crafted under the direction of the Q-Fire’s own pastry chef. Join the Q for Happy Hour daily from noon to 5 PM for $5 appetizers and drink deals.

Take a seat at the upstairs outdoor Coppertop Bar and sample one of their many specialty cocktails, such as the Watermelon Fire Margarita, served in the Q’s signature large cocktail glass. Q-Fire also boasts one of the island’s only Mojito Menus, with options such as the Pineapple, Strawberry, and Rock Coconut Mojitos. With eight beers on tap, both domestic and imported, and plenty of bottled beers, the Q has it covered when it comes to brew.

For a casual dining experience of one-of-a-kind wood fired goodness or a killer cocktail, “meet me at the Q.”

By Megan Kummer