By JOHN T. WARD
Here’s a quick look at some impacts of the COVID-19 virus on the Greater Red Bank Green.
Socializing on the rooftop at Teak with a cool Yellow Fever #2 cocktail. (Photo by Susan Ericson. Click to enlarge)
By SUSAN ERICSON
Starting this week and for the rest of the summer, PieHole is giving its What’s For Lunch feature a rest. Instead, we’ll mingling and chilling out on the Greater Red Bank Green, visiting outdoor happy hours and ice cream stands, starting with today’s first stop: the rooftop at Teak on Monmouth Street in Red Bank.
The aim of the event is to “showcase that retail is very much alive in our amazing little city,” said Angela Courtney, owner of the Sweetest Sin lingerie shop on White Street.
Here at the tail end of a year that many people are all too anxious to put in the rear view mirror, there’s still sufficient cause to keep the party percolating right up to the last ball-drop. And in the bars, restaurants and performance spaces of the Greater Red Bank Green, revelers have a choice of options that range from an intimate table at a favorite bistro to a big event that’s become the toast of all New Year’s Eve Extravaganzas in the state of New Jersey.
Here’s a sampling from Red Bank, Fair Haven, Rumson and Sea Bright nightspots.
By JOHN T. WARD
For about five years, Red Bank restaurateur George Lyristis has been developing an idea for a casual fast-food restaurant based on his ethnic heritage, he tells redbankgreen‘s Retail Churn.
Well, the time has come to make the concept real, he says. With the sale of their Zoe Bistro in Little Silver, effective Wednesday, Lyristis and his brothers Charlie and Taso are planning to open a new place called Greek Eats in Shrewsbury in coming months.
By JOHN T. WARD
Lunch at Teak in Red Bank on a recent frigid afternoon offered a double dose of satisfying warmth.
PieHole grabbed a table bathed in nearly blinding sunlight in the solarium-like front room overlooking Monmouth Street. That took the chill off the old bones, pronto.
Finishing the job from the inside out, though was a heaping dish of kung pao chicken, with flavor and substance by the megawatt.
By JOHN T. WARD
Amid a proliferation of new restaurants, downtown Red Bank is taking on a decidedly Asian flavor.
Two weeks ago, Oriental Empire opened at 54 English Plaza, joining five other purveyors of Asian cuisine in the heart of town – most of them of recent vintage.
Now, a sushi restaurant has signed a lease at the high-profile corner of Broad and Monmouth streets., in the former home of the Broadway Grille.
Press release from Navesink Business Group
The officers of Navesink Business Group have announced that tickets are on sale for the organization’s annual Waves of Support fundraising gala benefitting locally based charities.
Presented under the theme “A Taste of Broadway on the Promenade,” this year’s event will take place on Monday, September 22, 2014, at the historic Molly Pitcher Inn. The evening begins with cocktails at 6 pm, and includes a silent auction, spectacular entertainment, and a five-course dinner featuring selections from some stars of Monmouth County’s culinary landscape.
Headlining the evening’s entertainment will be a performance by The Broadway Dolls, the dynamic “girl group” founded by Hollie Howard, and featuring cast members from such Broadway hits as Mamma Mia, Rock of Ages and Jersey Boys.
Dinner will include hors d’oeuvres and several courses prepared by some of Monmouth County’s top dining spots, among them Ama Ristorante, Danny’s Steak House, David Burke Fromagerie, Soul Kitchen, Teak, The Bistro, The Cheese Cave and Zoe, in addition the executive chefs from The Molly Pitcher Inn and The Oyster Point Hotel.
Press release from Count Basie Theatre
On the evening of Tuesday, June 10, the Count Basie Theatre will be the setting for Two River Pride, an annual Pride Month gathering that was created for LGBTQ youth and their allies — and that centers on LGBTQ history and celebration, by giving specific voice to area youth.
The event represents a partnership between local civic, cultural, and community leaders and groups, including Red Bank Councilman Ed Zipprich, Make It Better for Youth and others. Red Bank Mayor Pasquale Menna will attend, to deliver a proclamation in recognition of Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender Pride Month. This year’s event will also feature live music, a sampling of wares from some of Red Bank’s food purveyors, and screenings of three acclaimed shorts from young filmmakers.
By JOHN T. WARD
Vegan chef and Cinnamon Snail owner Adam Sobel tells redbankgreen‘s PieHole that town officials threw up bureaucratic requirements Friday that would be impossible to satisfy in time for the truck to operate in the Monmouth Street parking lot of Teak restaurant, as planned.
An unidentified borough employee told a Snail employee that the truck would need a peddler’s permit, the type of license issued to roving ice-cream trucks, Sobel said Saturday afternoon.
“It seems bizarre that we would have to do that just to operate on a different piece of property,” Sobel said. “It’s silliness.”
By JIM WILLIS
As the final Sunday of this year’s Red Bank Farmers’ Market wrapped up in November, Cinnamon Snail food truck entreprenuer Adam Sobel was confident he’d be able to continue serving his vegan truck food to loyal followers, telling PieHole that he’d remain at the Galleria parking lot every Sunday through the month of December.
But earlier this week, Sobel put out this urgent message on Twitter:
Now, thanks to the intervention of PieHole, the Snail appears to have found a temporary Sunday home – in downtown Red Bank, a place not seen as friendly to four-wheeled purveyors of fine cuisine.
Is this the breakthrough truck food fans on the Green have been yearning for?
By JIM WILLIS
With a recent string of near-freezing nights, Mother Nature put us on early notice about just how cold we’re going to be for the next five months or six months. And like the ant in Aesop’s Fable about getting ready for the winter, PieHole wants to make sure that we’re all prepared for the cold months to come. The priority of course is to find a good cocktail to drink now that we’ve put away our seersucker and gin and tonics for the season.
Piehole checked in with Robb McMahon, the amply mustachioed mixologist at Murphy’s Tavern in Rumson to see what he suggests drinking now that we can see our breath outdoors.
“Bourbon. A bourbon Manhattan,” says McMahon, who’s been mixing up drinks around the Green for almost 30 years. The Manhattan is traditionally made with a rye whiskey and sweet vermouth, but McMahon says the bourbon version was one of the first drinks he ever made.
“I was raised on making them with bourbons,” he says.
By JOHN T. WARD
Praised for adding “urban” flavor and criticized for adding to parking woes, Teak resturant won approval Monday night to build the Red Bank’s first rooftop dining space.
Planning board vice chairman Dan Mancuso, who was on the short end of a 6-2 vote, blasted the expansion, which was alternately described as having a shortfall of 39 and 66 parking spaces.
“I’ve gotta tell you, you’re squeezing every inch out of this property, as the previous owner did,” he told co-owner Charlie Lyristis. “I don’t see this as a win for the town at all.”
Supporters packed Teak Restaurant for the second edition of Go Naked & Check Yourself on Sunday. (Photos by Rebecca Desfosse.)
By: REBECCA DESFOSSE
Sugarush cupcakes and Sweetest Sin have done it again. Teak Restaurant was nearly busting at the seams for the second sold-out Go Naked and Check Yourself cancer fundraiser and awareness raiser Sunday night.
Waitresses passed around food, cocktails, and minicupcakes. Lingerie and underwear models, in various states of undress, sold raffle tickets. But partiers werent there for the models, of course: they were there to learn how to check themselves for detectable cancers of the skin, testicles and breasts.
By REBECCA DESFOSSE
The presidential race may be over, but theres still one more election this month: Elect to Check, the theme for this years Go Naked and Check Yourself cancer fundraiser and awareness raiser.
By DANIELLE TEPPER
Thursday, October 4: Red Bank Family EyeCare Open House
Tyrone Choate, optical manager at Red Bank Family EyeCare, spent all of July volunteering at Cap Haitian Eye Center in Haiti, where he was inspired to apply what he learned at home before turning around and bringing something right back.
The doctor there really impacted me, said Choate. He wasnt doing it for the money, but out of the goodness of his heart.
The CHEC operates solely on donations, so Choate worked together with Dr. Erin Curtis to organize last week’s open house. Their goal was to raise at least $2,640, which is what it costs to sustain the Haitian clinic for one month. The night raised $2,000 from over 150 people and a portion of all eyeglass sales will be donated throughout the month of October to reach the grand total needed.
By JOHN T. WARD
Just over a year after changing hands, Red Bank’s Teak restaurant is blowing through the roof.
The Monmouth Street eatery, with an Asian-fusion menu, has filed a request at the borough planning and zoning office to add a second story with both indoor and outdoor tables.
“My vision is to bring a little bit of Broad Street to Monmouth Street,” says vocal downtown promoter George Lyristis, who with his brothers Taso and Charlie own the Bistro at Red Bank and Zoe in Little Silver. They bought Teak last year with a group that includes Bon Jovi bandmember David Bryan.
The cause was cancer prevention, and the nearly naked male and female models were there for educational purposes swear!
Go Naked and Check Yourself, a soiree thrown together by Red Bank’s Sugarush cupcakes and Sweetest Sin lingerie, drew some 250 partiers to Teak Restaurant on Sunday, all there to learn how to check themselves for detectable cancers of the skin, testicles and breasts.
Miss New Jersey 2012, Michelle Leonardo of Tinton Falls, added some tiara power. redbankgreen was there, too, naturally, to capture the flavor and flashes of flesh. Hey, it’s our duty.
By DUSTIN RACIOPPI
As Red Bank continues to claw its way out of an economic hole it hasn’t seen since the we-don’t-like-to-talk-about-it Dead Bank days, Mayor Pasquale Menna tends to periodically jab downtown’s retailers with a reminder that it’s going to take work to bring Red Bank back as a top destination in the region and beyond.
Lately, though, he’s taken a firmer approach.
At a council meeting last month, when two requests for car shows on Broad Street appeared on the agenda, he paused from the typical rubber-stamping of such requests.
“This is a chance to tickle, pinch, smack our retailers to stay open on Sunday,” Menna said, and then pointed to Red Bank RiverCenter Executive Director Nancy Adams, who was seated in the audience. “Get the word out. Tell them to stay open on Sunday. I might start smacking instead of pinching.”
It was another lash at a limp horse he’s been flogging since before Red Bank’s business dipped with the national economy. For years, Menna has been urging merchants to move away from the nine-to-five mindset and keep the lights on after dark and on Sunday, when too many stores, he says, are closed.
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.
The restaurateur, who with his brothers Taso and Charlie also owns Zoe in Little Silver, said he and two partners bought Teak because they were concerned that the restaurant would fail, leaving another gaping hole in the downtown streetscape in the way Ashes Cigar Bar did on Broad Street with its collapse under the weight of litigation did last summer.
“I didn’t want to see another domino fall,” Lyristis tells redbankgreen.
It took Danny Weinberg a matter of seconds to decide on Red Bank as the newest location for his longtime business, Hip And Humble Home.
Weinberg, a Teaneck resident, had recently closed his New York City shop and was driving through Red Bank about six weeks ago when he spotted a vacancy on Broad Street.
“I just drove down here one day, saw the ‘for lease’ sign and the price was right,” Weinberg, 48, said. “I didn’t look anywhere else.”
Six weeks later, Weinberg’s stock of unique wooden imports, mostly from Indonesia dining tables, chairs, dressers and bed frames, among others is packed into 58 Broad, and Weinberg is ready to tap into demand for used furniture.