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WHAT YOU WANT IS OFF THE MENU

112014 temple2Pineapple cashew fried rice: available, but not on the menu, at Temple Gourmet. (Photo by Susan Ericson. Click to enlarge)

By SUSAN ERICSON

morsels mediumWhile waiting for friends at Temple Gourmet Chinese in Red Bank recently, PieHole perused the menu and listened to our waitress describe the specials. But what, we wondered, had those people ordered?

A nearby table held a gleaming platter of golden fried rice lavished with sweet pineapple, golden raisins and cashew nuts.

It turns out to be a dish the kitchen will whip up for anyone who orders it. The secret?  You just have to know it exists.

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RED BANK: BOONDOCKS IN THE SPOTLIGHT

071014 boondocks news2Eyewitness News anchor Lauren Glassberg interviews Boondocks diners  – including Sugarush owner Chris Paseka, at right.  (Photo by Susan Ericson. Click to enlarge)

By SUSAN ERICSON

morsels mediumBack from the devastation of Hurricane Sandy, Red Bank’s five-year-old Boondocks Fishery is about to get a bit of metro-area exposure.

An ABC Eyewitness News crew led by anchor Lauren Glassberg paid a visit Thursday for a segment on a Boondocks perennial favorite: Spicy Seafood Gumbo..

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SEA BRIGHT: BOONDOCKS MAY DOCK HERE

sb station 012513Kelly McRyan, below, hopes to convert the former auto repair garage above into a takeout seafood restaurant.  (Click to enlarge)

By JOHN T. WARD

kelly boondocks 042813Red Bank’s Boondocks Fishery may soon have a sibling operation in Sea Bright.

Owner Kelly McRyan is eyeing the former site of Sea Bright Service Station at the foot of the Rumson-Sea Bright Bridge as a second location for her popular riverfront eatery, she tells redbankgreen.

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BOONDOCKS LOBSTER SHACK WILL BE BACK

Hundreds of food lovers turned out at the Oyster Point Hotel in Red Bank Thursday night for a fundraiser to help Kelly Ryan rebuild her Hurricane Sandy-damaged restaurant, Boondocks Fishery. The Navesink Business Group organized the event, with participation by restaurants under the Red Bank Flavour umbrella.

Ryan, who had already raised $8,000 toward her $30,000 goal on indiegogo, told redbankgreen that sheetrock went up in her lobster shack – located on the Navesink River adjacent to Marine Park –  earlier Thursday, and she’s shooting to reopen May 14.

The Oyster Point, too, was knocked out by the October 29 storm, returning to normal operations in February. (Click to enlarge)

RED BANK: REFLOATING A LOBSTER SHACK

Kelly Ryan at her storm-damaged Red Bank restaurant on Tuesday. (Photo by Wil Fulton. Click to enlarge)

By WIL FULTON

“When people think of Sandy’s impact on Red Bank, most will say that the town didn’t get it so bad,” says Kelly Ryan, owner of the Boondocks Fishery, a summer-only, open-air eatery that’s been serving lobsters and scallops adjacent to the Navesink River and Marine Park for the past four years. “But I guess they haven’t seen this place.”

“We came back here the day after the storm, and my first reaction was ‘Oh my God, the building is still standing,'” she said. “But once we looked inside, we understood that even though the structure was still up, the insides were completely devastated.”

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BOONDOCKS REVIVES WATERFRONT DINING

boondocks1Scenes from a recent Tuesday night at Boondocks. That’s owner Kelly Ryan at upper left with Mike Harper and Megan Prenderville. At upper right is chef Chris Kelber; lower right, the blackened grouper platter. (Click to enlarge)

Think of it as waterfront access for the rest of us.

Anyone familiar with Red Bank’s northern edge knows that river access is at premium. Hotels, private residences and marinas hog most of the Navesink River shoreline. It’s inaccessible to all but the most adventurous from Riverside Gardens Park. And while one might drop a baited line or crab pot from the pier at Marine Park, there’s no getting one’s feet wet — never mind that the pier and promenade are completely off-limits now for a planned reconstruction.

Hell, there’s even a battle raging over how much access the public should have to about 50 feet of frontage at the foot of Maple Avenue.

So it’s no small thrill to find that, after a two-year interval, waterfront dining is back on the Navesink here. And for many patrons of the new Boondocks restaurant, it’s a double thrill to discover that the simple seafood menu is done with panache.

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