Skip to content

A town square for an unsquare town

redbankgreen

Standing for the vitality of Red Bank, its community, and the fun we have together.

WHAT’S FOR LUNCH? SOME SERIOUS HEAT

060915juanitos3best-500x281-9911809Platillo Altamirano, a spicy lunch special. Below, festive chairs liven up a dining room. (Photos by Susan Ericson. Click to enlarge)

By SUSAN ERICSON

060915juanitos1-220x139-2938925
Even with the air conditioning blasting on a summer day, the rustic dining room of Juanito’s Restaurant in Red Bank envelopes you in sun-kissed warmth.

Celebrating his 20th year in business at the corner of Monmouth and West streets, owner Juan Torres works with local artists to brighten the space’s rustic brick walls. His plan to keep the place colorful, fun and inviting is immediately evident. But it’s the delicious, spicy food that packs the entrance any given night.
060915juanitos5-500x281-9467716Sopa de Tortilla at Juanito’s Restaurant. (Photo by Susan Ericson. Click to enlarge)

Lunchtime, however, hews to a more relaxed pace, allowing for time to linger if schedules permit.

A molcajete-shaped bowl, filled with mild salsa and a basket of tortilla chips, arrives at the table with menus, offering famished diners something to nibble on while deciding what to order.

We started with a bowl of Sopa de Tortilla ($5), a mild tomato and chicken broth-flavored soup. With a squeeze of lime and a few shakes of hot sauce, the soup – filled with shredded chicken, vegetables and topped with a small mountain of crunchy tortilla chips – was delectable.

Hoping for some authentic flavor, we split the Platillo Altamirano ($13), named for a little town in Mexico, from the specials menu.

Piled high with three grilled shrimp, two plump baby lamb chops, and a lobster tail arranged on a bed of fresh spinach and topped with mushrooms, peppers and a hot chipotle sauce, this dish brought the heat. Seriously spicy, it’s not for a timid palate. The tame sides – plain rice flecked with bits of corn and grilled mixed vegetables – brought a tastebud-calming note to the meal.

In addition to the inside dining area, which features festive, brightly-painted chairbacks, Juanito’s sports a good-sized patio that can be enjoyed in nice weather.

Juanito’s is open seven days a week, 11:30 a.m. to 3 p.m. for lunch and 4:30 p.m. to 9 p.m. for dinner. It’s BYOB, so bring the cerveza and vino with you.

Remember: Nothing makes a Red Bank friend happier than to hear "I saw you on Red Bank Green!"
Partyline
VOLUNTEERS GET INTO THE WEEDS
Toting plastic trash bags, 51 volunteers conducted a walking litter cleanup on Red Bank's West Side Saturday.
“IT’S A PARTY AT WAWA!”
You wish you could vibe like Brian, who lives on the other side of Hubbard’s Bridge. He caught redbankgreen’s attention in Red B ...
POPE OKS ORATORY
RED BANK: St. Anthony of Padua obtains papal approval to establish Oratory of St. Philip Neri, a community of priests and brothers devoted t ...
RED BANK: NEW MURAL BRIGHTENS CORNER
RED BANK: Lunch Break founder Norma Todd is depicted in a mural painted this week on the front of the newly renovated social service agency.
TULIPS TOGETHER
Spring tulips taking in the sunset outside the Molly Pitcher Inn in Red Bank Monday evening.
RIVER RANGERS RETURN
River Rangers, a summer canoeing program offered by the Navesink Maritime Heritage Association, returns this summer for up to 20 participa ...
DOUBLE DYLAN IN RED BANK
Trucks for a production company filming what one worker said was a Bob Dylan biography have lined Monmouth Street the past two days with cre ...
AFTER THE RAIN
A pear tree branch brought down by a brief overnight storm left a lovely tableau on the sidewalk in front of Red Bank's Riverside Gardens Pa ...
CONE OF UNCERTAINTY
Asked by a redbankgreen reporter why these cones were on top of cars, the owner of the car in the foreground responded: “That’s ...
RAIL RIDER’S VIEW
A commuter's view of Cooper's Bridge and the Navesink River from North Jersey Coast Line train 3320 out of Red Bank Tuesday morning.
PUT ME IN COACH!
Red Bank T-Ball kicked off at East Side park on Saturday morning. The brisk weather proved to be no deterrent to the young players, ranging ...
IT’S A SIGN!
Once proudly declaring its all-but-certain arrival in Spring 2019, the project previously known as Azalea Gardens springs to life again with ...
SPRINGTIME MEMORIES OF CARL
The Easter Bunny getup and St. Patrick’s Day hat that belonged to longtime Red Bank crossing guard and neighborhood smile-creator Carl ...
RED TRUCKS AT RED ROCK
A small dishwasher fire at Red Rock Tap and Grill was put out quickly by firefighters overnight, causing minimal damage. Red Bank Fire Depar ...
CREATIVE COVER UP
The windows of Pearl Street Consignment on Monmouth Street were smashed when a driver crashed their car through them injuring an employee la ...
THEY’RE BACK!
Ospreys returned to the skies over Red Bank this week for the first time since they migrated to warmer climes in late fall. With temperature ...
SPRING IS SPRUNG
RED BANK: Spring 2024 arrives on the Greater Red Bank Green with the vernal equinox at 11:06 p.m. Tuesday.
RED BANK’S FINEST – AND NEWEST
Red Bank Police Officer Eliot Ramos was sworn in as the force’s newest patrolman Thursday, and if you’re doing a double take thinkin ...
EASTER EGG MAYHEM AT THE PARK
An errant whistle spurred an unexpectedly early start to the Spring Egg Hunt on Sunday, which had been scheduled to begin at eggsactly 11am ...
PRESEASON DOCKWORK
RED BANK: With winter winding down, marina gets ready for boating season with some dockwork on our beautiful Navesink River.