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Jan 18, 2010 11:08 AM

Market In The Middle - Appears to be CLOSED

Well, this seems to be true. My partner and I just ate lunch at the Brickwall today and the place has been cleaned out. All of the artwork and decor is gone and the interior is down to the bare bones. There are still table/chairs and a few furniture items, but if this place was only closing for the season, it certainly wouldn't look the way it does.

Too bad - the place rapidly went downhill once Marilyn Schlossbach was no longer associated, and many of the staff - and regulars - had left for Langosta Lounge.....I'm sure she will get some more business from her new venture, Trinity and the Pope, that will be opening in February in the old Mattison Park location.

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  1. So many joints going bust in Asbury...IMO only one place is doing things right on Cookman, and it's Brickwall. I had no reason to go to MitM with BW right next door...

    13 Replies
    1. re: joonjoon

      joon - I've never been a fan of the food at Brickwall (although I have enjoyed the beer and the music there on occassion). On the other hand when Marilyn was involved next door, I did enjoy MIM. At this moment, other than Taka and At the Table, I find nothing to recommend in downtown AP. I do however look forward to Trinity and Pope and can't wait to compare it to my gold standard Drew's.

      1. re: bgut1

        Bg. don't forget that Moonstruck & Bistro Ole are still holding it down.

        It was a given that some of these places would 'die' once October and the good weather ended. Rents remain skyhigh and with that unfogiving expense, you need to have 'traffic' downtown and with the holidays and cold weather, that just about sealed the fate of certain restaurants.

        Which brings me to Synaxis. Never hear about their food from anyone, yet they remain open. What gives with that spot?

        1. re: JustJake

          Jake - I haven't forgotten about them. I'm not a fan of either restaurant. As far as Synaxis, I don't know anyone who has eaten there recently.

          1. re: bgut1

            Synaxis was just fair at best... was more Mediterranean than simply Greek and nothing was really memorable....

            1. re: bgut1

              I've been to synaxis a couple times but only for drinks and snacks. Their appetizer sampler is actually pretty good, and at a reasonable price. I didn't feel like trying any of their entrees..

          2. re: bgut1

            Any word when Trinity and the Pope is set to open?

            1. re: AC Captain

              I would think there might be a trademark infringement, or something like that, with the name. It's too similar to the name of the Keyport restaurant. Unless, of course, it's owned by the same people.

              1. re: cantkick

                Similar? Yes. Close? No. Close only counts in horsechews and hand grenades.

                I don't see it (trademark infringement) happening here.

                1. re: JustJake

                  Thought I was the only horseshoes and hand grenades user!!!

                  We just had a good dinner at Plan B last night - Synaxis was empty and the staff was sitting at the bar watching the Simpsons!

                  1. re: tuxedo

                    Tuxedo - Would you describe your meal at Plan B? I don't recall reading many reviews of this restaurant. Thanks.

            2. re: bgut1

              Bg, I'm not a huge fan of the food at BW, but when you look at the whole package - beer selection, price, and food, it's really a good all-round combination. Just their beer selection alone makes it hard to try any other place.

              I did like MitM for a while but found little reason to go back with BW next door. I'm really talking about drinks here - I don't think I would go to either place for food alone.

              1. re: joonjoon

                Joon - Thanks for the clarification. I completely agree.

              2. re: bgut1

                Hey I don't know if you know about Plan B, but it was really great when we went, granted it was a week day. I TOTALLY disagree with Taka, the rice was terrible, if you want good sushi go to Yumi in Sea Bright on Ocean Ave. Plan B is the underdog and takes the plate for me, tried every other place, was not impressed....looking forward to check out TATP! happy eatings!

                Plan B Restaurant
                705 Cookman Ave, Asbury Park, NJ 07712

                1120 Ocean Ave, Sea Bright, NJ 07760

            3. Trinity and the Pope, eh? Sounds interesting. Wow, I am SO glad that that wretched Mattison Park monstrocity is gone for good.

              I used to be a huge proponent of Brickwall's food early on, but as everything in this part of the state, is starts strong and gets mediocre quick. They used to do a prime rib hash with eggs that was just stellar...

              1. I was wondering about this! I was in AP just after the holidays and noticed it looked empty, was going to drive around the block and come around for a closer look but never did. I didn't like MIM. The service was so bad the first time that we got up and left, and the second time the service was slightly better, but the food was mediocre - and this was shortly after they opened.

                I've had some good times and good crabcakes at BW, excellent service, and really good beers. It looks like development has come to a screeching halt in AP with million-$ condos purchased by only a few. AP was almost on its way back. A shame this economy will set it back again. Which means businesses have to pay attention to service, too.

                1. It does not surprise me that Market in the Middle is closed. I had really bad experiences there of late. I emailed the new owner my opinion of the service, food and he was rather attentive to my complaints. BUT the bottom line is that a restaurant cannot survive any longer with bad food and service. The competition is just too tough and people do vote with their wallets. I went to Synaxis for dinner and when I arrived the owner was standing outside the door smoking a cigar which was whafting into the restaurant, which for me is a deal breaker. We did not end up eating there. I would give Bistro Ole another 6 months before the out of business sign appears in the window. The food was awful. I did eat at Plan B. Once was enough for me. It was fine, but with other restaurants to choose from, it was not good enough for a return visit.

                  3 Replies
                  1. re: willmorris5

                    Willmorris5, I happen to agree with your comments for each of the restaurants that you mention above. Unfortunately Asbury Park is going to the dogs. Even Moonstruck has transcended from the once great establishment that it was. Maybe one day Asbury will revive itself but not anytime soon I think...

                    1. re: JerzeyShore

                      I do think the offerings in Asbury Park have become more varied....McCloones, Stella Marina, Lagousta Lounge, Watermark, etc. have added a certain BUZZ to the boardwalk and for that I am extremely pleased. However, I have had spotty meals at Lagousta Lounge and Stella Marina as well. I guess this is par for the course. I am someone who enjoys good food and find it pretty hard to come by in this area. I have even eaten at Nicholas (#1 rated restaurant in the state of NJ) as was NOT overwhelmed there. Maybe it is because I tend to put food before decor and whether or not the restaurant can make a good Martini. I will continue my search and hopefully report on it at some point.

                      1. re: willmorris5

                        No one has mentioned The Harrison on Cookman. One of my favorites since it was on the other side of town.