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DUB GETS ASHES LICENSE AT AUCTION

ashes-auction1Hundreds packed the shuttered Ashes Cigar Bar Tuesday to bid on anything and everything on the auction block. (Photo by Dustin Racioppi; click to enlarge)

By DUSTIN RACIOPPI

At a public auction for the assets of Ashes Cigar Bar, the owners of Red Bank’s Dublin House bought the defunct nightclub’s liquor license for $395,000 Tuesday.

While that was the biggest ticket item on the block, hundreds of restaurateurs, workout vultures and spectators filled the Broad Street space to place bids on everything from barstools to kitchen equipment to bottles of wine.

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RISING FROM THE ASHES? WATCH THIS SPACE

jack-anderson-072110Landlord Jack Anderson says he’s gotten a number of proposals for the former Ashes space. (Click to enlarge)

A collective groan was heard through downtown Red Bank earlier this month went a court-appointed official abruptly shut down Ashes Cigar Bar, a high-profile if controversial eatery and bar that served as a nightlife anchor for more than a decade.

Just what we need when the retail and restaurant sectors are struggling to claw back to profitability, store owners said: a honking big vacancy in a town with plenty of small and medium-sized ones. How will the building’s owner find a tenant to replace Ashes in this economy?

Well, landlord Jack Anderson doesn’t think the outlook is dire. He says he’s already got offers for the three-story building on his desk across the street at Jack’s Music Shoppe, and he’s “motivated” to get a deal done ASAP.

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RECEIVER STUBS OUT ASHES CIGAR CLUB

ashes2-071210A passerby peers into Ashes Cigar Club Monday night. (Click to enlarge)

The court-appointed receiver in a complex series of lawsuits over Ashes Cigar Club has shut down the Red Bank restaurant and nightclub and has no plans to reopen it, he tells redbankgreen.

It could take months to find a buyer, says attorney Bunce Atkinson, who stubbed out the last hope of rekindling the business on July 7, when he directed that it be closed for good. Information about the reasons for the shutdown were unavailable until this morning.

Meanwhile, two groups of investors who claim to have had stakes in the bar’s liquor license have been squeezed out, and the state is looking to impose fines over identities having been hidden from regulators, Atkinson says.

“There’s going to have to be a fine paid” to the state Alcoholic Beverage Control agency, he says.  “It’ll come out of the sale of the assets.” The former owners won’t see another dime from their investment, he says.

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