Their doors have not reopened even as others began offering outside dining. Now one's been sold and the other is closing it's doors and switching to a catering service.

The Downtown is located in the heart of Red Bank and has been a very popular place for years to go for great food, live music, and just to have fun with friends.

So I did a double-take when I drove by about a month ago and it dawned on me that I still hadn't seen its doors reopen for outside or inside dining (since it's famous large front windows would open out to give it an indoor-outdoor feel.)

After asking some other local residents and restaurant owners, I found out that the previous owner wasn't able to stay afloat after the pandemic hit.

Now there is word that the place has been sold, liquor-license and all. Will it reopen under new ownership? Will it become something else entirely? Stay tuned!

We also just found out that another amazing restaurant is a victim of the pandemic and won't reopen: Via 45, which critics raved about for years. This is just so sad. The silver lining here is that the owners say they will be switching from a storefront to a custom catering take-out operation. I am thrilled about this because that means I will finally get to try their food...which has been on my restaurant bucket list for years! Stay tuned for details when we get them!

(Red Bank Broadwalk photo by Liz Jeressi)

Meanwhile, the restaurants in the 'Broadwalk' area of Broad Street in downtown Red Bank, which now resembles a mini Greenwich Village, are using the street to set up extra tables and grab as much outdoor business as they can for as long as they can.

That section of the street (starting at where it meets West Front Street) has been closed to vehicles for months now and turned into a walking and dining plaza that now operates all week long (instead of just Thurs. through Sun.like it did over the summer.)

Looks like, as of now, an end-date for Broadwalk has been set for Nov. 30th but it would be awesome if we have another mild winter and that can continue through the holidays, right?

Of course between Covid-19, the weather, and Governor Murphy's constant changes to the laws involving gathering and indoor dining, this is all subject to change. So let's not take our restaurants and outdoor dining for granted. Get out there and support local business!

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