RED BANK: CATCH TO TAKE GOTHAM SPACE

Catch will relocate from its present spot at 9 Broad Street to the home of Gotham, five doors away, and will be replaced by a Mexican restaurant. (Photo by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge)

By JOHN T. WARD

This edition of redbankgreen‘s Retail Churn has a plateful of news from the Red Bank food scene, with two food-related businesses closing, one moving and another opening.

Also: pet acupuncture.

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RED BANK: THE SWEET AFTERTASTE

081514 cutie pops pomericoMelanie Pomerico, owner of Lil’ Cutie Pops, holds a bouquet of cocktail-themed cakes. (Photo by Susan Ericson. Click to enlarge.)

By SUSAN ERICSON

morsels mediumCocktail Week, a townwide party that showcased the bars and bartenders in Red Bank, had some sweet support from borough bakers.

Lil’ Cutie Pops on Monmouth Street made three flavors of its signature cake pops: Bailey’s Irish Cream, Guinness Dark Chocolate and Margarita. Although they were baked especially for the themed event, all three treats are often in stock or can be special-ordered, shop owner Melanie Pomerico said.

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RED BANK: CUPCAKERS TAKE ON ENTENMANN’S

sugarrush chris paseka (1)Chris Paseka of Red Bank’s Sugarush talks to PieHole about appearing on Food Network’s ‘Rewrapped.’ (Photo by Jim Willis. Click to enlarge)

By JIM WILLIS

morsels mediumHow hard is it to replicate the taste and texture of a classic cookie?

Chris Paseka and Jesse Bello of Red Bank’s East Front Street cupcakerie, Sugarush will show the world what’s involved when they appear as contestants Monday night on a new Food Network program, Rewrapped.

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SUGARUSH GETS ‘REWRAPPED’ ON FOOD NET

rewrapped sugarushYes, Red Bank dessert lovers, that IS Chris Paseka and his partner, Jesse Bello, at far left and right respectively, on the set of the new Food Network Show ‘Rewrapped.’ The owners of Red Bank’s Sugarush bakery are scheduled to appear on a future episode of the show, which debuts Monday night and has contestants “re-create and then reinvent some of America’s sweet and savory treats” under the watch of host Joey Fatone. Paseka tells PieHole that he is contractually bound to secrecy about the his and Bello’s involvement in the show but will give us a heads-up before the episode runs. (Click to enlarge)

IT’S ALL A MATTER OF TASTE IN CUPCAKE CITY

Photos by Stacie Fanelli. To enlarge the slideshow, click the embiggen symbol in the lower right corner.

By DUSTIN RACIOPPI

Late in 2009 and into 2010, a sign in a window on West Front Street indicated a new specialty shop, Cake Red Bank, would be moving in soon, teasing the palates of passersby.

It never came.

But then, amid a series of pounding snowstorms that buried the area, a couple from Manhattan brought baked batter to the table in a nook on East Front called Sugarush, offering an array of cupcakes and confectionaries. It appeared  that Chris Paseka and Jesse Bello-Paseka had firmly staked their frosting knives in the ground.

Little did they know that two prospective cupcake merchants were greasing mini foils in preparation for their own cupcake outlets within blocks of Sugarush. Within a matter months, Red Bank, a town of 1.7 square miles, has become home to three cupcake shops — the Pasekas’ Sugarush, Cupcake Magician and Mr. Cupcakes — setting the stage for a turf war.

But several months in, the rivalry has shaped up as plain vanilla, with owners playing nice and customers, apparently welcome to options, having largely formed their own opinions and allegiances, showing that even in a small market, it’s possible to find a niche within a niche.

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THE WEEK IN REARVIEW

11-wreathA wreath was placed at Piping Rock Park in Rumson, where a plaque honors borough residents who lost their lives in the September 11, 2001 attacks. (Photo by Dustin Racioppi)

By DUSTIN RACIOPPI

It was a week that started fraught with emotion, as news broke in a national address by President Obama late Sunday night that a commando team had wiped the face of evil in the Western world, Osama bin Laden, off the earth.

For those around The Green, it was a bittersweet measure of justice, as scores of residents in our area lost their lives in the September 11, 2001 attacks masterminded by bin Laden.

It hit particularly close to Middletown, which lost 37 people in the attacks. We were out Monday morning talking to those who paid their respects at Middletown’s serene 9/11 memorial garden, near the train station.

And the week went on from there.

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