by Ben Halevy
From corn dogs to mashed potatoes to tacos to orange chicken, Hometown Buffet in Edison is the closest buffet around, and it has it all. But the appeal of this place isn’t just the food; it’s pigging out with your friends and creating memories for years to come.
When you first walk in the door of the restaurant just off Route 1, you immediately have a full view of the buffet, all of which only costs $12.19 for an adult dinner and an additional $2.49 for a beverage. Next, you can explore the sheer variety of food options coming from multiple food genres, such as classic American roast beef and a Mexican-style, create-your-own taco station. While the choices may seem overwhelming at first, there are some foods you clearly have to try.
The food at Hometown Buffet drastically varies in quality depending on the type of food and the day, but some are always winners. In terms of tasty food, the corn dogs and the orange chicken are the best options bar none and foods you can consistently eat again and again. Most of the generic meats, such as the wide variety of seasoned chicken, are pretty safe unless noticeably over- or undercooked, which tends to happen from time to time. In terms of vegetarian options, the salad bar hosts a wide selection of delicious choices and is likely the healthiest type of food present at the buffet. A great drink option is the ICEE machine. To satisfy your sweet tooth, the desserts available at the buffet are consistently good and include an ice cream machine as well as brownies, cookies, cheesecake and Fruity Pebbles-infused Rice Krispie Treats.
On the other hand, there are definitely some foods we recommend you avoid. The fish options at the buffet are usually not great, and, let’s be honest, fish at a buffet isn’t always the freshest option. The melted cheese tastes similar to plastic, which is also present in the mac and cheese. The mashed potatoes sometimes have the texture of whipped cream, so that’s another food that can waver in quality each time you go.
We’ve gone to Hometown Buffet multiple times over the years and it’s pretty much the same deal each time: Gather all the food you want to try (often dividing it amongst ourselves) and see which foods taste best that night, then go back up and pile on more of it. Overall, the food isn’t the best you’ll ever taste, but the fun of eating however much you want and experimenting with your friends is definitely an experience you don’t want to miss. It makes the trek out to Edison worth it.