Shark Week? Celebrate the “charc” at NJ’s Best Meat Shops

Shark Week? Celebrate the “charc” at NJ’s Best Meat Shops

Shark week? More like greyhound week.

We are foodies. Who needs fins when you can have figs?

And when it comes to surfboards, we have Williams Sonoma wooden boards (with camembert and paté).

July 7-13, when the Discovery Channel airs its made-up marketing campaign on all things big and white, we forget about predatory fish. We have jaws bigger than jaws and we want sharp white fish, not white sharks.

So if you’ve had your fill of hammerheads — but are totally crazy about halloumi — read on. Here are five of the best charcuterie spots in North Jersey.

Butler and Board, Montclair

Founded by chef Jeff Butler, this hidden Montclair gem specializes in small-batch charcuterie made with the highest quality ingredients. The meats (from pâtés to gourmet sausages) are handcrafted in-house and sold alongside marinated cheeses.

Visit the shop and choose from protein varieties like jambon blanc, mortadella, and rosemary lamb sausage. Complement these meats with small mason jars of spiced honey ricotta—or provolone with olive tapenade—for an artisanal board that’s sure to impress.

To go: 103 Forest St., Montclair; no phone,

Ombra, Boonton

Do you want to celebrate Charc week in all meat restaurants? Ombra, a cozy, table service salumeria in Boonton, has you covered.

Though the place is Italian (and the term charcuterie comes from French), the menu is dominated by tagliare and antipasto — which are essentially the same thing.

Start your evening with a sumptuous board of chef-selected meats and imported cheeses, then feast on marinated vegetables, truffle burrata and goat cheese crostini.

And if you still feel like dessert? Plates of homemade cookies await you.

To go: 516 Main St., Boonton; 201-367-1196,

Framed by D, Hackensack

Plated by D in Hackensack may be the largest charcuterie board in Jersey. In fact, some of owner Dylan Elias’ creations are so large they take up entire tables at parties and events.

But that comes as no surprise to Elias, who says, “Since the dawn of time (1997), I have loved food — and I have loved food even more.” food food.”

Loaded with smooth cheeses, salty crackers, nuts, pickles, olives, honeycomb, jam and edible flowers, the colossal plates are perfect for those with an appetite the size of a whale shark.

To go: 390 Hackensack Ave., Hackensack; 201-741-0595,

Brasserie Mémère, Closter

In contrast to the giant platters mentioned earlier, Brasserie Mémère, a charming French restaurant in Closter, serves mini charcuterie boards.

Selling for about $23 each, each one contains up to three types of meat or cheese accompanied by freshly baked bread (like a toasted brioche or a crusty baguette). Various fruit compotes, nuts or jams combine proteins with carbohydrates.

Perfect for the indecisive, the appetizer-sized portions allow you to try the baked camembert with walnut jam — without having to give up the pheasant pâté with pistachios.

To go: 107 Vervalen St., Monastery; 201-660-8822,

Madison Cheese Shop, Madison

If you like great art on your charcuterie boards? Madison Cheese Shop is the place for small bites.

The upscale cheesemonger-staffed shop specializes in visually stunning cheeseboards—packed with imported cheeses from Gruyère to Manchego.

Order it to go (and enjoy it at nearby Madison Memorial Park) and you’ll have the perfect Instagram post.

To go: 36 Main Street, Madison (with a second location in Summit); 973-307-9366,

Kara VanDooijeweert is a food writer for and The Record. If you can’t find her at Jersey’s best restaurants, she’s probably running in the mountains. Check her out on Instagram: @karanicolev & @northjerseyeatsand sign up for it North Jersey Eats Newsletter.