Char Starts From the Studs
A quick peak inside the Broad Street building that will house Char restaurant.
In just a few months, the image you see above of a gutted-out building, torn down to the studs and brick, with debris littering the concrete floor, will be home to Red Bank's hottest and hippest new restaurant, Char Steakhouse.
Just last February, the owners behind the plan to bring Char to Red Bank won site plan approval from the borough's Planning Board. The approval came with a couple of variances, most of them having to do with the modern style and design - both inside and outside of the building - developed by Cahill Studio.
While work is underway, it's clear they've got a ways to go if they want to meet their scheduled September opening. The first step, however, is tearing it back down so it can be built back up.
On a beautiful day Thursday, workers opened the front doors to the building, previously home to Ashes Cigar Club, a combination restaurant, bar, and night club that met a unceremonious end after the borough pulled its liquor license, the final straw in a series of infractions that doomed the once-popular spot. Work on the transformation has begun.
For too long the building, located right smack in the middle of the downtown has sat empty, with only the image of a grinning bulldog holding a cigar reminding visitors of what used to be. This past summer, however, a new sign emerged. "Up from Ashes Rises Char," it read.
With an established name - the original Char in Raritan has been a success for years - and a promising design championed by both the Planning Board and Red Bank RiverCenter, things are looking good for one of the downtown's most prominent locations.