1 Republik: Reviewed
1 Republik offers great menu for Hoboken
Hoboken is filled with bars and restaurants that typically satisfy most customers. No business would ever survive in such a competitive environment if they offered such substantially low-quality products and services. But what sets one establishment over another? Why do you visit a pub or eatery? Because it’s close to your house? Has outstanding food? A great social scene?
1 Republik opened it’s doors last month – and can be classified simply as a “bar / restaurant.” One of the largest bars in Hoboken, dozens of flat-panel TV’s – and much to my surprise – a menu, kitchen and chef that offered more depth than you’re used to in the Mile Square.
Hoboken411 recently had lunch at 1 Republik, and had a chance to get to know the menu and Executive Chef Emmett McDonough. See video below to find out why you should have a nice meal there (if you haven’t already!)
1 Republik now open in Hoboken
Haven’t had a chance to swing by 1 Republik yet at 221 Washington Street – but they’re open for business. See happy hour and bar specials below.
1 Republik taking shape in Hoboken, NJ
A brief update about 1 Republik (formerly known as One Republic – they apparently modified the name for the text message, twitter-loving crowd!)
Construction is moving along, and a identifiable exterior has now taken shape. While 99% of residents are happy to see the sub-par Mile Square exit – I’m getting mixed messages from residents about the look of new place. Some say it’s “nothing special so far,” and others enjoy the rich red awning and “hope for an un-smelly bar with at least halfway decent food!”
One Republic at least six months out
Construction workers have been gutting the establishment previously known at The Mile Square recently (and it sure is huge when you see how it looks without the two sections).
They expect build-out of “One Republic” to take six months before it’s complete, so the preliminary target date is around January 2011, barring any of the usual delays.
NYC Bar Owners bringing “One Republic” to Hoboken!
As you may have noticed – the Mile Square Bar & Grill (221 Washington St.) is pretty much shut down – and you might be wondering, “What’s Next?”
Well, the owners of several NYC bars – Joshua Tree, Mercury Bar, and Tonic (as well as some similar locations in Massachusetts) are taking over the location. They’re unveiling a new name for their venture into Hoboken: “One Republic.”
Expect their big city style and expertise to keep Hoboken on their toes, with a strong emphasis on “Sports Bar” programming, happy hour specials and typical bar food menu.
Mile Square Doomed?
Not sure what the deal is here – but many readers inquired about whether they’re doomed or just renovating.
I emailed the Manager last night, and will await a response – plus the Mile Square Website is DOA – so I don’t know what’s going on. Anyone know?
[Note: This is a reader contributed article, and might not represent the views or opinions of Hoboken411]
Today’s review of the “nightlife” aspect of Mile Square Bar & Grill comes from Hoboken411 reader “regulator.”
Mile Square / Nightlife review
While Mile Square is possibly better known as being a restaurant with a bar, it also doubles as a pretty good place to go out on a Friday or Saturday night. A combination of good atmosphere, cheap drinks and a good selection of music makes it a favorite of many. While it is certainly not as “trendy” (word used loosely) as some of Hoboken’s other nightclubs, such as Lana Lounge, Lounge 11 or Nine, Mile Square still has a lot to offer, as I will detail in this review.
Being virtually almost next door to one of Hoboken’s best known nightlife scenes (Bahama Mama’s), it is imaginable that Mile Square would have a tough sell. After all, Bahama’s has a large dance floor, cheap drinks (on selected days or hours), and the name brand recognition that out of towners love!
However, Mile Square does have a couple of things going for it. For one, it is much larger than Bahama’s, or at least the setup invites one to feel as if it is bigger (I compare it to Bahama’s now, but the same can be said when comparing it to the other locales I mentioned earlier). At Mile Square, you have the option of buying a drink at the bar and then bringing it back to sit down at one of their many booths or tables. While the bar area might get a bit cramped, having the freedom to walk and move around and actually SIT and talk to friends is a big plus in my mind.
It’s true that many people simply overlook Mile Square on their way to some of Hoboken’s other bars on a weekend night. To increase interest, Mile Square offers drink specials on selected beers and specialty drinks. $2 Bud Light drafts and $3 Yuengling drafts are standard on any Friday or Saturday night at Mile Square. Also, they frequently have other drink specials: in the past month or so, they have had $3 Soco and Lime shots, $1 Red Headed sl*t shots, $3 Jaeger shots, and $3 Smirnoff mixed drinks. With the exception of the discounted beers, which are oftentimes watered down, the rest of the drinks are always strong.
Music is a very subjective issue; the modern rap and techno that are blared at many of Hoboken’s nightspots drives away many potential patrons, who refuse to associate with the people at this type of scene. Well, readers who may have found themselves in this situation would be pleased to know that 80’s night is every weekend night at Mile Square. No, you won’t see people dressed in cheesy headbands or track suits (except for the DJ… more on that later). What you will see, however, is people of all ages (mainly 21-35) enjoying a great mix of tunes at the bar; everything from Journey to Madonna to even some Britney Spears (pre and post psychopath status). As the night progresses, you will also hear some newer urban/rap songs, but everything is very well balanced. What this creates is a good atmosphere where everyone enjoys a little. You’ll see younger people (21-24) like me, singing along to old 80s songs that we were probably too young to have heard the first time around. You’ll see women in their 30s getting down with their younger selves and dancing to some new rap. You’ll witness a great time in the making.
Aside from their drink specials and music on the weekend, you’ll also get to meet interesting people. The DJ, regularly there with his headband and Aviator sunglasses, is a pretty cool guy and will play any song you ask him to. The bartenders, oftentimes ambushed by large groups of people at the bar, are also generally helpful and quick in getting drinks. And you’ll even witness the resident creepy old guy, who on my last visit was forcibly escorted out by one of the bartenders. If you come with friends, there’s a pool table in the back (away from the bar with plenty of space) where you can play a quick game, or challenge a stranger. There’s also a big screen TV towards the back, usually with any game that may be going on, along with smaller TV’s behind the bar.
In closing, Mile Square does not pretend to be, nor will it ever achieve the likeness of, a Lana or Lounge 11. Simply stated – they’re catering to a different type of people. If you loathe a night out in Hoboken because of any preconceived notions of the type of scene at one of the bars or clubs I mentioned in the opening, then consider going to Mile Square next Friday or Saturday night; you may be pleasantly surprised.
Description – Popular Hoboken haunt serving “American regional cuisine with world flair”, Trendy. Zagat rated.Entrée price range $12-$22.
Services – Bar, American regional cuisine – salads, pizza, appetizers, sandwiches, pasta, Sunday Brunch, Live Music. Take Out
Website – www.themilesquare.com
Address – 221 Washington St, Hoboken, NJ 07030
Telephone – 201-420-0222, Fax – 201-420-8619
There are three reasons Mile Square is getting reviewed today:
1) Zack’s hadn’t opened yet.
2) It was still on the list of places to review.
3) Sheer morbid curiosity and a willingness to suffer.
Ok, it’s been quite a while since a meal was consumed here. I remember when they first opened, it was one of the “hot spots” to go in Hoboken. That didn’t last long at all once the Ebbits, Madison’s and Bistro’s started opening.
In the past, there were many not-so-fun experiences both eating and drinking. The meals were either poorly done, service was terrible and unfriendly, or the bar was too stinking hot, etc. Plus many Hoboken residents have pretty much nothing but complaints about Mile Square since.
Today we chose the mid-afternoon on an early fall day. There were about two tables outside being used, but we wanted to check the interior out, so we sat inside. We were the ONLY two people at the time. The inside hasn’t changed much, with the exception of that they added a new bar to the side room, and some ugly unstained wood paneling to the interior walls that look a lot like some kind of fenced off construction site. Not pleasing to my eye, at least. It may look better with concert posters and grafitti.
Our waiter came over before I even sat down to ask for our drink orders. Gosh give me a minute to get my jacket off at least!
The menu looks fun and diverse, however there is nothing really truly healthy on it. Even the chicken salad was fried.
After we ordered our waters and diet cokes (FYI, taps here were ok, nothing to worry about), he took our simple three-item order. He had no notepad. We ordered one plate of buffalo fingers as an appetizer, a southwest burger and country chicken salad (grilled) as our entrees. Pretty easy to remember, right?
5 minutes go by and our waiter asks “Would you like cheese with that burger?”. I responded “Isn’t a southwest burger supposed to come with pepper jack cheese already?”. He shakes his head and replies “Oh, I thought you ordered a regular burger”. C’MON!
22 minutes later (some) of our food arrives. The burger and salad come. But no sign of the appetizer! C’MON!
To summarize the burger:
- Actually not bad. Pretty juicy and fresh. Though not in the top 10 of burgers by any means.
- Waffle fries taste almost as good as Oddfellow’s Jazz fries.
To summarize the salad:
- Skimpy vegetable portions.
- Chicken acceptable.
- Decent dressing (on the side).
- Nothing to write home to mom about.
Then the very apologetic waiter brings the buffalo fingers out when we were done with our entrees, and indicated “they’re on him” since he was so absent minded. I’m kind of glad because:
- Though the buffalo taste was good,
- I found the chicken to be odd. Didn’t seem right to me in the way it chewed.
- My friend found it to be better than I did. She likes her chicken that way.
- Even free I could barely touch one of them.
Overall, I’m glad I got this place out of the way. For $19, I guess it wasn’t a bad deal if you were hungry and this was the only place for miles. But my synopsis of Mile Square is in the form of some notes I’d hand out:
- To the Manager: For God’s sake, please hire competent people!
- To the incompetent staff: For God’s sake, find a different job!
- To the chefs: Sorry it may not be your fault!
- To the patrons: Sorry you made that choice!
- To myself: Why Why Why?