Friday, October 9, 2015

Carrino Provisions No Longer

About three weeks ago, Carrino Provisions quietly shut down the market portion of their space. They stopped tweeting and closed off their Instagram. When asked on Twitter, all they'd say was there were some exciting changes to come.



A few days later, they began installing TVs in the market area and told passerby they were turning the front part of the space into a sports bar but leaving the Osteria as was. A few days after that, they announced via Eater that they were doing a complete overhaul of the space, started moving furniture out, and about a week ago, papered up the windows and started renovations.


Yesterday, they announced they were starting over as American restaurant Bell + Gray,  and per Eater, will be serving classic cocktails, local beers, and fare like oysters, fried chicken, kale salad, a pub burger, etc. - all of which are, quite frankly, pretty common finds around Jersey City already. While I'm glad that the group behind Carrino recognized that their initial idea wasn't working and decided to revamp it, I can't help but wish they were going to try to be a little more innovative and interesting in their menus.

Based off pictures on social media, it does look as though they are keeping the front part of the space, the former market, as a bar as they initially said. The main dining room and wine cellar space in the basement will remain the same.

One of the major issues Carrino faced wasn't the food at the Osteria (though it was overshadowed by the presence of  big name Talde right next door), but that the market was outrageously priced, inventory was inconsistent, and out of pace with the neighborhood. Then the decision to make the former market section a sports bar was met with a lot of derision and negativity online and shortly thereafter is when the announcement of a complete overhaul was made, making the idea seem rushed (although it's certainly possible this had been planned for a while). But if these issues weren't thought about or addressed, can Bell + Gray can do much better? Dale Talde is behind the menu and there's no doubt he knows how to cook and can put out reliably good food, but if the organization behind the restaurant is still not paying attention to the needs and wants of the neighborhood, especially in terms of price point, this overhaul may not end up being the rescue they're looking for.

They are planning to open the restaurant on Monday, 10/12, at 5pm.

5 comments:

  1. I'm happy with this. I never really cared for the Carrino concept, and yes I think that Talde really outshined it. While I agree it's not the most innovative offering, I think JC has plenty of extraordinary and unique places as it is, so it's not like we're hurting for interesting restaurant concepts. I am definitely more excited for Bell + Gray than Carrino!

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    1. I just hope they approached it with a better understanding of their customer base. I think that's going to be key.

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  2. Only thing I'm gonna miss about Carrino is their hamburger meat and boneless short ribs. Unfortunately, they were the only JC outfit that sold meat free of hormones and bacteria!

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    1. Have you checked out Bone In? www,boneinfood.com - it's a local service that provides specialty meat, other groceries, and some pre-cooked meals.They work with a lot of small NJ farms and carry grass-fed, hormone and antibiotic free products. They do deliver and are at several of the Farmer's Markets as well. You might be able to find what you're looking for from them.

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  3. I just hope the price point is okay, my only complaint about Carrino was NYC pricing, and on pasta! I mean Roman Nose/Porta is better and less expensive. I, honestly, don't think this place will do well, I'm sure food will be tasty, but doesn't everyone already have their spot for a burger, fried chicken, classic cocktails, local beer?! Over saturation of this concept in DT JC for sure.

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