RED BANK: VAPE SHOP, GROCERY OPEN

 Smoke Theory features display cases filled with water pipes and other smoking products, as well as a walk-in cigar humidor. (Photo by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge)

By JOHN T. WARD

retail churn smallTwo new retail shops opened in Red Bank this week: a neighborhood grocery on the West Side and a smoke shop downtown.

Read all about them in this winter-doldrums edition of redbankgreen‘s Retail Churn.

Isacc’s Grocery takes over a space formerly used by a karate dojo at the corner of Drs. James Parker Boulevard and Bridge Avenue.  (Photo by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge.)

• Husband-and-wife retailers Ron and Shama Grover have opened Smoke Theory at 65 Broad Street, just south of Wallace Street.

Like their Manalapan store, called Smoke Ringz, this one sells vape and e-cigarette products, along with conventional cigarettes and cigars, hookahs, herbal tobacco, papers and other smoking materials.

The couple say they’re riding the broad cultural shift away from traditional smoking products via vaping, which is widely considered less harmful. On their shelves are USB-charged Juul vape devices and replacement cartridges.

The space, formerly tenanted by Healthy Habits, was still being stocked when Retail Churn visited earlier this week. A walk-in humidor for cigars should be ready within a few days, the owners said, and a sitting area near the door will allow customers to test products, but not to hang out and smoke, they said.

• Isaias Gaspar, who has operated Isacc’s Grocery next door to the West Side post office on Shrewsbury Avenue for a decade, has opened a mini-market of the same name at 128 Drs. James Parker Boulevard.  The shop features three aisles of dry goods, fruits and vegetables and more.

The space is owned by an entity controlled by real estate developer Roger Mumford, who has built a number of new homes in the vicinity and maintains his office is a few doors away. He’s also building Fortune Square which is to feature a restored T. Thomas Fortune house and 31 new apartments less than a block to the east.