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? SALADS AND PIZZA

120616urbancoal4-500x270-9984611Personal-size pizzas from the oven at Urban Coalhouse in the Galleria. (Photo by Susan Ericson. Click to enlarge)

By SUSAN ERICSON

wfl-whats-for-lunch-181x220-2273671PieHole stopped in for lunch last week at Urban Coalhouse Pizza and Bar, the former Tommy’s Coal-Fired Pizza in the Galleria of Red Bank, one of four restaurants that owners Andrew Cameron, Chris and Matt Lombardi and Mike Centaro have up and running around New Jersey.

We were happy to find few if any changes to what we enjoyed about Tommy’s, including the fact that the menu still centers around an enormous, coal-fired, 900-degree oven used to producing the signature pizzas and wings.
120616urbancoal5-500x246-7228933An arugula salad and one based on romaine, below, are among the lunch special options at Urban Coalhouse. (Photos by Susan Ericson. Click to enlarge)

120616urbancoal2-220x134-5862503Exposed brick walls and wood beams create a rustic ambiance typical of shops and restaurants in the Galleria, the onetime home of Sigmund Eisner‘s booming uniform factory on Bridge Avenue. The dining room still offers comfortable mahogany-dark-wood tables and booths.

Unlike founder and former owner Tommy Bonfiglio’s newer Tommy’s Tavern + Tap in Sea Bright, with its expansive offerings of everything from burgers to sushi, the menu here has stayed closer to its Italian trattoria-style roots. Pasta, heroes, and artisanal pies dominate, with one exception: spicy chicken wings roasted in the super-hot oven and served with long hot peppers. They’re something to obsess over.

The lunch specials menu is a mix-and-match affair. Meatball, chicken or eggplant parmigiana heroes come with soup or a salad for $9. Penne pasta is served with a choice of bolognese, marinara or vodka sauce, and also with soup or a salad, at $12.

We homed in on the nine personal-sized, artisan-style pizzas ($13) with catchy names. There’s the Bye Bye Buffalo Pie, topped with breaded chicken, celery, mozzarella and provolone, plus a drizzle of hot sauce and blue cheese. The Don Gregorio should appeal to the stromboli-loving crowd, as its ingredients include sausage, pepperoni, meatballs, tomatoes and mozzarella.

We opted for a simple vodka pie, pervasively spread with a cream, tomato and vodka-infused sauce, and speckled with bites of grilled chicken. It was probably the least daring pie on the menu.

A spinach artichoke pie hit all of the right notes. Like a party-favorite spinach artichoke dip, this pie has a velvety cream texture, featuring chopped artichokes, spinach and melted-cheesey goodness that harmonized with an under-bite of roasted garlic.

A pizza is only as good as its crust, and this is where a coal-fired oven really shines. Wood-fired ovens tend to emit a more moist environment at 500 to 900 degrees, while coal ovens can reach 1,200 degrees. This one excels at producing a slightly smoky, charred and flavorful crust that is cooked right through the center of the pie.

Our salads were colorful and fresh. Arugula, bits of artichoke hearts, generous shavings of grana padana cheese and cherry tomatoes were brought together with a light lemon vinaigrette in one salad.

The other, consisting of romaine lettuce, dried cranberries, matchstick slices of granny smith apple, gorgonzola cheese and candied pecans with an apple cider dressing, could have been a happy meal in itself. Not one taste bud was ignored by the the sweet, salty, and savory funk of the cheese. Throw in a riot of crispy and creamy textures, and you’ve achieved salad nirvana.

Urban Coalhouse offers its lunch specials from 11 a.m. until 4 p.m. 

susan-ericson-9177851

Remember: Nothing makes a Red Bank friend happier than to hear "I saw you on Red Bank Green!"
Partyline
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.
CORNED BEEF AND DISCO FRIES?
It’s Friday, and smart Lent-observing Leprechauns know the pot of gold at the end of Red Bank’s rainbow is actually the deliciou ...
SURFBOARD DITCHED
It’s a violation of etiquette in surfing to ditch your board.  (it could hit another surfer and hurt them). But someone appears to ha ...
ELSIE, TAKE ME WITH YOU!
Soaked by pouring rain with the temperature hovering in the low 40’s, this sign in the window of Elsie’s Subs on Monmouth Street ...