The restaurant, which opened on Feb. 28, is the latest venture for siblings David and Anne-Marie O'Brien.
The pair also owns the successful Merchant bar and grill located on Grove Street in Downtown Jersey City. After they opened the Merchant in 2002, they quickly became established as a friendly neighborhood place known for comfort food and charm.
With the new restaurant, the siblings hope to offer something to locals who might be craving a special night out without having to travel to Manhattan to find it.
According to David O'Brien, the food is going to be a major focus of the place.
"I'm more of a foodie," said O'Brien. "We wanted to try something different than the Merchant."
O'Brien's chef, Bryan Gregg created dishes made with fresh ingredients and delicate sauces and spices that are designed to showcase the food.
On a recent Friday night, my companion and I made our way to the restaurant in the quiet Hamilton Park area to sample some fare.
Crushed velvet drapes cover the inside entrance, which give way to a dramatic entryway with the ceiling over 20 feet high. The eye is drawn towards the custom designed lighting and the stone walls, which make one feel that the rooms were carved out of the stone.
There are several rooms to enjoy including: the spacious, separate bar area; the main dining room: a separate dining room, which would be perfect for a large private party; and an upstairs lounge that has comfortable low couches and tables.
Yet for all of its elegance, it's not stuffy. The Embankment still provides the kind of charm one would expect from a venue owned by the O'Brien family.
"We tried to bring a bit of the outside in," said O'Brien as he pointed to the stones outside the window. "If you look across the street you can see the bricks over there."
When we sat at the long wooden bar, we were greeted by the very friendly bar staff and enjoyed the complimentary homemade potato chips.
They offer a pleasant selection of specialty cocktails including: the old fashioned, the Rob Roy, Rusty Nail, the Side Car and others.
The Martini list has the staples like the Cosmopolitan, the espresso martini and newer varieties like the Ruby Red grapefruit.
In addition, they have a wide selection of beer (on tap or in a bottle) and select wines by the glass and the bottle.
O'Brien said that they've been doing well since the soft opening and they have plans for the grand opening party in April.
"It's been going good," said O'Brien. "It's been excellent on the weekends."
O'Brien said that they will change the menu every season and described the food as "seasonal new American" cuisine.
Gregg has created dishes that should satisfy a variety of appetites.
For starters they offer hummus, meat platters, poached clams with smoked bacon and more. For entrees, they offer pulled pork with fondue and apple slaw; curried chicken; grilled corned beef, hanger steak with potato puree and others.
But those looking for a simple, yet satisfying burger or sandwich can still order that off the bar menu.
On the night we were there, we sampled the Lobster salad sandwich with hand cut fries - which was fantastic. The salad was perfectly seasoned and not too stuffed (where it ends up on your hands). The fries were perfectly crunchy and satisfied our need for salt.
They are open for lunch weekdays from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. and dinner is served from 5 to 10 p.m. On weekends, dinner is served until 11 p.m. In addition, they have a late night menu at the bar that is available until 1 a.m.
Those looking to sample several of the menu items should try the prix fixe menu (weekdays 5 to 7 p.m.).
Additionally, during Happy Hour everything on the menu is half price.
According to O'Brien they are planning to host upcoming tasting events that will pair wine or beer with food designed to compliment the beverage. But that is only one of the things that plan to do to entice guests. In the future, they plan to have live music.
"Once you start something, you have to put your energy behind it," said O'Brien.
The Embankment is located at the corner of 10th and Erie streets in Jersey City. For more information, call (201) 222-6115 or visit: www.theembankmentnj.com.
Comments on this piece can be sent to: firstname.lastname@example.org.