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RED BANK: OWNER VOWS ‘NOT ANOTHER FIXX’

rb gotham 060514Gotham Lounge will have a dress code, a partner in the business said. (Photo by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge)

HOT-TOPIC_02By JOHN T. WARD

Hoping to head off misconceptions, a partner in the Gotham Lounge, a proposed Red Bank nightclub, promises an “upscale, sophisticated” speakeasy-themed place with a dress code.

Joseph Squillaro tells redbankgreen that the Broad Street club will be respectful of local sensitivities.

“I know how important it is to the town that they not have another Chubby’s there, not another Fixx” he said, referring by the former and current names of a West Front Street bar that authorities shut down for three weeks earlier this year following two street melees within a month last fall.

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PIEHOLE: BRINGING WARMTH TO A COLD WEEK

Gail Doherty from Good Karma Cafe in Red Bank Good Karma Cafe’s Gail Doherty transports PieHole readers to the south of France. (Photo by Jim Willis. Click to enlarge)

PIEHOLE logoredbankgreen’s PieHole is all about local food and drink. If you haven’t liked us on Facebook yet or followed us on Twitter, you may have missed some of these recent stories . . .

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RUMSON: GET YOUR GATSBY ON

murphys_redesignHeather Vena and Robb McMahon of Murphy’s Tavern in Rumson have wrapped up a marathon week of renovations and updates to the bar. (Photo by Jim Willis. Click to enlarge)

By JIM WILLIS

morsels medium

The first thing you notice about the freshened-upped Murphy’s Tavern in Rumson is the new sign that hangs outside the bar. Right out front it reads, proudly, “Since Prohibition,” a nod back to the basement bar’s past as a neighborhood speakeasy.

With the help of some family and friends, owners Robb McMahon and Heather Vena spent the past week putting a Prohibition-era refresh on the bar they took over nine years ago.

“We were tired of looking at the same four wall,s and finally put our own thumbprint on the place,” says Vena.

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PIEHOLE: LEMONS, TUNA, SPICE AND WHISKEY

mcmahon vena 111413Already rocking the era-appropriate suspenders, Robb McMahon, with partner Heather Vena, is taking Murphy’s Tavern back in time. (Photo by Jim Willis. Click to enlarge)

PIEHOLE logoIn case you missed it on redbankgreen‘s PieHole food page…

Murphy’s Tavern in Rumson is returning to its speakeasy roots, so to speak… easy.

• Howard Bernstein’s Spice & Tea Exchange expects to open in Red Bank late next week. Meantime, he’s sharing slightly-used lemons with the Cheese Cave next door.

• What’s For Lunch? How about a tuna sub from Elsie’s in Red Bank?

Follow the links to the stories, and check out PieHole’s Facebook page or follow its Twitter feed @RedBankPieHole for up-to-the-minute postings.

 

RUMSON: MURPHY’S RETURNING TO ITS ROOTS

The repeal of Prohibition on December 5, 1933, made Murphy’s Tavern legit, but owners Robb McMahon and Heather Vena, below, plan to take the Rumson bar back to its speakeasy days.  (Click to enlarge)

By JOHN T. WARD

mcmahon vena 111413Eighty years to the day after the repeal of Prohibition, a Rumson bar that got its start as a speakeasy is turning back the clock.

Heather Vena and Robb McMahon, who’ve owned Murphy’s Tavern for seven years, plan to shut the watering hole down for one week next month to give it a bit of a makeover.

Still located in the basement of a house in a quiet residential area, Murphy’s will undergo minor cosmetic changes, including the removal of some television sets, a paint job and the installation of whiskey-barrel tables.

Those will be the most visible steps in a repositioning that’s largely about offering whiskeys and bourbons more conducive to sippin’ than slammin’, and a vibe to go with it.

“We’re going to focus on the era in which we were born,” Vena tells PieHole.

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RUMSON: TALKING COLD-WEATHER COCKTAILS

murphy's15 (1)Robb McMahon of Murphy’s Tavern in Rumson mixes up a pair of bourbon Manhattans. (Photo by Jim Willis. Click to enlarge)

By JIM WILLIS

With a recent string of near-freezing nights, Mother Nature put us on early notice about just how cold we’re going to be for the next five months or six months. And like the ant in Aesop’s Fable about getting ready for the winter, PieHole wants to make sure that we’re all  prepared for the cold months to come. The priority of course is to find a good cocktail to drink now that we’ve put away our seersucker and gin and tonics for the season.

Piehole checked in with Robb McMahon, the amply mustachioed mixologist at Murphy’s Tavern in Rumson to see what he suggests drinking now that we can see our breath outdoors.

“Bourbon. A bourbon Manhattan,” says McMahon, who’s been mixing up drinks around the Green for almost 30 years. The Manhattan is traditionally made with a rye whiskey and sweet vermouth, but McMahon says the bourbon version was one of the first drinks he ever made.

“I was raised on making them with bourbons,” he says.

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