Essex County is a great place to live, work and play. The number of new businesses coming to Essex County in 2023 is reflective of that, as the incoming businesses include everything from a paint-and-sip studio to a vegan soul food restaurant to an Italian-Japanese fusion restaurant. Read on to learn more about what to look out for in 2023.
Editor’s note: This list is not meant to be exhaustive. Please email firstname.lastname@example.org to make an addition.
Brick City Vegan | Seymour Street Project, Montclair
Founder Adenah Bayoh said that the concept for Brick City Vegan came from a desire to make healthy food more accessible. “I was thinking about bringing food into urban communities, especially underserved ones, getting people access to quality food,” Adenah said. “People in these communities experience awful food insecurities. The neighborhoods are inundated with chicken shops and unhealthy options. My idea was to bring something in that countered that and bring it into the neighborhood. I want to give people the option, the ability to have healthier food, healthier choices.” There is one location of this concept called Urban Vegan, which is in Newark, and the Montclair location will be its second. The menu at Brick City focuses on plant-based comfort food that has been sourced locally.
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Brooklyn Dumpling Shop | TBD
The concept for the Brooklyn Dumpling Shop was founded by NYC restauranteur Stratis Morfogen, who took his family’s legacy trade, the New York diner, and reinvented it as this winning combination: diner dishes served in delectable dumpling form. The Brooklyn Dumpling Shop — as a concept — will be an automated experience. As a direct effect of Covid-19 and restaurants aiming to offer customers a contactless exchange, The Brooklyn Dumpling Shop will have metal detectors scanning customers’ temperatures and glass compartments with food that open by scanning customers’ smartphones. Patrons can choose from dumplings in over 32 delicious flavors at the shop.
Cornbread | Seymour Street Project, Montclair
The Montclair location of soul food restaurant Cornbread will mark the restaurant’s third location in New Jersey. The “farm-to-soul” restaurant is a fast-casual-style restaurant focusing on modern technology paired with old-fashioned soul food to create a one-of-a-kind experience. All of the ingredients are sourced from local producers, and the menu features traditional meals like fried fish, fried chicken, and BBQ pork paired with classic sides like mac and cheese, yams, and of course, cornbread.
Halden Interiors | Bloomfield Avenue, Montclair
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Interior designer Kesha Franklin has a background in corporate event planning and fashion, which led her to doing more interior design work. She connected with an architect while designing a restaurant space, and fully dove into interior design in 2006. Kesha’s clients have included NBA and NFL superstars. She prides herself on connecting with clients on a personal level to create a personal and beautiful collaboration.
She has been named a “Rising Design Star” by NYC’s Decoration & Design Building; a “Designer to Watch” by the Black Interior Designer’s Network; and she was recognized by Phaidon Publishing as one of “The World’s Best Contemporary Interior Designers.”
Montclair Mud Clay Studio | 370 Bloomfield Avenue, Montclair
The Mud Clay Studio is bringing its hands-on approach to pottery to Montclair. There are two current locations in New Jersey, in Boonton and in Madison. The new Montclair location is set to open in early September. The Studio offers classes, studio hours, parties, summer camp, and memberships. Memberships allow patrons to access the studio 24 hours a day and access to premium firing services.
The NOW Massage | 425 Bloomfield Avenue, Montclair
The NOW Massage is a light and airy space where patrons can escape their busy lives and truly relax. The treatment menu has three styles of massage at its core with several options for add-ons, including scalp massage and gua sha. Massages last 25, 50, or 80 minutes and are The Now, which is the signature treatment and is a Swedish-inspired massage; The Healer, which is energy-balancing; and The Stretch, which is sports-inspired. Massage memberships are also available.
Pasta Ramen | 6 S. Fullerton Avenue, Montclair
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Pasta Ramen started as a pop-up project from James Beard award nominated chef Robbie Felice. The space in Montclair will be Pasta Ramen’s first permanent home. Guests can expect an Italian/Japanese experience. According to the restaurant’s website, “pastaRAMEN, the first-ever Italian ramen shop, is a perfect marriage of Japanese and Italian culture and cuisine. Sensational and sacred, it blends meticulous techniques and deep flavors for an umami-rich taste, as strong as the love for an Italian grandmother’s rustic cooking.” The restaurant plans to open on January 2nd, 2023.
The Junction at the Gateway Center | 1 Gateway Center, Newark
The Gateway Center is a four-building complex that has office and retail spaces. One of the buildings is called The Junction and there are nine restaurants set to open later this year. The eateries include: 375˚ Chicken & Fries; The Brookdale; Brooklyn Dumpling Shop; Chip City Cookies; Farinella; Fresh & Co.; Greek from Greece Bakery & Café; Mokbar; Serafina, and Uncle Willie’s Wings.
Wine & Design | 1 Greenwood Avenue, Montclair
Everyone, children and adults, can explore their creative side at Wine & Design. The studio hosts paint nights, craft nights, and other DIY-centric events. Kid’s birthday parties, corporate events, and other private events like birthday parties can all be held in the space, which is a BYO for both food and beverages. And, the artists at Wine & Design can take the show on the road and host an event on-site.