A Visit to Better Days, Jersey City

A new restaurant, Better Days, has opened above the 143 Social speakeasy in Jersey City. The space, located at 143 Newark Avenue, was formerly a Bareburger burger joint, but the owners wanted to turn it into something that would be more appealing to Jersey City restaurant-goers. 

Bareburger is still available for takeout and delivery at the back entrance (126 Christopher Columbus), while the main space offers a new American menu with pastas, burgers, sandwiches and a variety of plates suitable for sharing.

Better Days opened on February 26th 2024, so I popped down on opening day to check out the vibe. 

The Ambience

As I walked into Better Days the first thing I noticed was the striking black chairs with yellow painted legs. There’s also a monochrome mural at the front, plus a large piece of artwork that’s covered in moss. At the back of the upper level is a large dining area with two large colorful murals, one of which depicts scenes from Jersey City’s history. 

Downstairs is 143 Social, a sexy, dark speakeasy serving innovative cocktails and light bites. So when guests have finished dinner upstairs, they can pop downstairs for a nightcap. 

The Food

The menu at Better Days is curated by chef Arto Ozgun, a French culinary graduate. Originally an IT professional, Arto began his chef career over ten years ago and hasn’t looked back. He and his wife own a total of 9 restaurants, including Better Days and 143 social. 

Arto recommended I order the Beef Rib Pastrami, which is a giant BBQ beef rib served with pickled red cabbage, hot mustard, cilantro cucumber salad and a Pretzel roll. I also tried the Roasted Cauliflower, served with goat buttermilk sauce and shishito cilantro emulsion. 

Both dishes were really delicious, although it was a lot of food for just one person. Definitely bring along some friends and order a few dishes to share. I was really spoilt for choice with the menu – next time I have my eyes on the Better Caesar Salad, the Mafaldine, the Scalloped duck Fat Potatoes and the Lasagne Pinwheels. If you’ve ever been to Don Angie in Manhattan, the lasagne looks very similar to theirs. 

A Final Word

Better Days is open for both lunch and dinner, and serves brunch on the weekends between 11am and 4pm. You can also take advantage of one of the best Happy Hour deals in Jersey City – 30% off your entire check between 3pm to 6pm Monday to Friday. 

The food at Better Days is a big step up from burgers, and is definitely a welcome addition to the Jersey City restaurant scene. 

To see more pics of the restaurant’s food offerings, follow Better Days on Instagram here. To stay in the know with all of the local news + happenings, follow @jcityinsider on Instagram and sign up for our newsletter.

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Scroll to Top