Saturday, February 23, 2008


Today we pretty much wrapped up the staffing. As far as the kitchen, we welome aboard Jeremiah M., David O., and Frank M.. Frank M. some of you ask, could that mean Frank Martinez? THEE Frank Martinez? The same Frank Martinez who a few years back when you thought you were kind of play fighting with him, and he thought you were doing a "Bula Fight Club" and kicked you in the knee tearing your ACL and sending you into orthoscopic knee surgery? That Frank Martinez? And my answer is "yes" THAT Frank Martinez. We welcome Frank back with open arms (and guarded knees). What can I say, I'm a sucker for hulking, violent, hard working, barking guys from Guam. Welcome back Frank. Jeremiah is joining our crew as our sous chef and brings alot of great ideas, energy,and experience. We're glad to have him as a part of our opening team. David is our new "Young Gun" and is coming in with not alot of kitchen experience but a great attitude and a desire to learn. He'll be joining our crew that came with us from bula, Corry B. (yes, me) and Nick. All of that will now be under the watchful eye of Salt's chef de cuisine, Anthony Mandeville. Tony was my sous chef for 5 years at bula and is now taking that leap into running the kitchen, allowing me time to run the restaurant and concentrate on YOU, our customers, menus, business, and making sure everyone and everything is running smooth. We have put together what I think is a great team and can't wait to get rollin'.
As far as front of the house (waitstaff, bus-people, bartenders, manager), there we have a fantastic team as well being led by Salt's new manager Jen Hornung. Its already been great working with Jen and are really excited at having her on board. The front of the house starts with our senior employee from bula, Sir Erion Adams, whom not only comes and joins us as our senior employee, but is a good friend as well, so we are totally into having Erion with us. Erion is joined by Ms. April, Ms. Kelly, Corey S., and Rachel M. All bula alum. Add to that mix of a bunch of fresh names and faces that we have hand-picked, put them all under the watchful eye of our resident Hawk...Laurie, and I think we have an awesome team!
Tommorrow's work is...Dining room floors, kitchen floor, fountain, and next coat of poly on the bar!

And now I know by the counter that's posted on this sight that all of you are reading this, I just find it hard to believe that no-one has anything to say...not even a "Hey Brad, your blog sucks, stop wasting your time writing all of this crap that no-one cares about. Why don't you get a life, or spend the time you are wasting by putting up posts on getting your restaurant open." Or "Hey Brad, that blog thing you are doing is so f-ing incredible, why are you wasting time opening a restaurant when you should be writing for a magazine or for tv shows, you are awesome dude, keep it coming, I sit and stare at the computer for hours just hoping that you will put up another post soon." SAY SOMETHING...ANYTHING....LOL

Friday, February 22, 2008

Damn snow.

Snow just seems to put a damper on everything right now. Today we are getting just a little bit closer to the end, or the beginning, depending on how I am viewing it at the moment. I spent the day building out the box for our fountain that will be in the foyer.....and I have to say it is going to be awesome. I may be a little biased but I think everyone will like it. The bar got another sanding and another coat of poly on it, which I think is now coat 9....Here is a pic of how the bar is shaping up. Yesterday Tony and I held interviews for the sous chef (2nd in charge of the kitchen)..or actually I should say "interview" because we actually only met with one person yesterday. The staff is shaping up all around, and we think we are putting together quite a team. We have really got some great people coming on board. Our beer and wine menues are really shaping up as well, and boy, wait til' you see them! They're really interesting, and full of surprises...Thanks for the help Bob!
Kitchen floor goes in on Sunday, thats exciting! Dining room floors get their start on Sunday, and by Tuesday should be like new...that is really something I can't wait to see!! There is also a great find going into the new DR floor, after 7 years of searching for an autentic/old manhole cover, when I was'nt looking, there it was. While dropping off scrap metal at Raimo's in Byram, there it 1907 Morristown manhole cover that will be prominently displayed in the middle of our DR floor. That pic I will post tomm. Thats it for today, time to rest my body while my mind races with menu items, deadlines, appointments, phone calls that need to be returned, endless Home Depot lists, kids social schedules, bank deposits and bank withdrawals, oil deliveries, interviews, interview questions, employee handbook info, the lyrics to "Sweet Caroline"....lyrics to Sweet Caroline???? you ask, that's for another post, and countless other things....Kava-Kava is my answer, if you have'nt tried it, its great stuff, and meditation.....these keep the head straight...

Wednesday, February 20, 2008

a glimpse into trying to have a meeting..trying

Trying to get Salt opened involves meeting with A LOT of people. Yesterday, we had to squeeze in a meeting with our liquor distributor for 4:30. A sketchy time since it would involve our kids possibly joining us. But not to worry, we have Direct TV at Salt now, so they could just watch tv during the meeting, no problem. Plus, Bridget had dance class and our friend would be driving her. Ok ready to go. Trying to get Bridget off to dance, she suddenly develops a "Stomach Ache" because she didn't want to go because the costume that she has to wear for her dance recital in JUNE is too girly and well, she just doesn't even want to dance anymore. Ok, we finally get her to leave. Get to Salt in the knick of time--Mom, Corry, Mike (corry's friend) and Kai. Dad is waiting with the vendor. Ok, Kai watch TV and quiet please. We start the meeting. Somebody comes to the door--applying for a job. Ok. Phone rings. Phone rings again and again and again. Kai doesn't WANT to watch tv. Ok, out to the back with Corry and Mike to explore the stream. Sit back down. Someone else is at the door. Ok, back to the meeting. Phone rings, it's our friend who took Bridget to dance-- Bridget is "sick." Ok, call the school. She's fine, but weird, she has your house phone with her in case she wanted to call you. What?! Back to the meeting. Corry has come up the stairs (our office is above the restaurant). He is motioning me to come out--looking worried. Kai FELL IN THE STREAM! Needless to say I finally left Brad to conduct the meeting without me. Wrapped Kai in an apron and headed home. Seriously, we could really use a nanny. Another day in the life....

Tuesday, February 19, 2008

Salt Art!

THANK YOU LORI! Lori D'agostino painted our signature piece to greet everyone as they enter Salt's foyer. PERFECT! 5'x4' arcrylic on canvas

Monday, February 18, 2008

La Dolce

Today Tony and I hit NYC for yet another auction. A soho landmark La Dolce Vita on the corner of Sullivan & Spring (my old stomping grounds) closed its doors this weekend and we were there to help them. Well kind of, we were there more to help it live on through Salt, in a small way, by picking up some small wares and some great solid wood tables......bringing a little bit of NYC's Village to Byram's. From Spring Street we headed over to the Bowery to look at new equipment for the kitchen. I think we have finally nailed down what exactly we want for the kitchen. So Thursday or Friday it is back to the city to pick out, and pick up our new kitchen equipment. I also just want to say thanks to all of you who have stopped in to say "HI" and to see how things are coming along......that would be you Frank, and Vinnie & Roe, and Jen & Pete, Jim, Jay, Corey and the Boys, Jim & Jan, Spencer & Max, Jill, and anyone else I may have forgotten. Now it is time to go meditate on all that is going on........ More Tomorrow

Sunday, February 17, 2008


The past few days have been jam packed with all kinds of fun. The kitchen hood is fully installed, which makes way for the kitchen walls to be finished and the new floor to be put down. The kitchen lights have also all been installed on the ceilings. The bathrooms are in the midst of being ripped apart and put back together. Toilets and vanities were ripped out, new walls and floors will be going in, then new vanities and toilets, some fresh paint, new ceiling, and new lights. Tony and I have gotten the 5th and 6th coats of poly onto the bar, and the 1st and 2nd coats of poly onto all of the dining room tables, all of that this morning and afternoon. The roof was tarred (?) to fill in a few pin holes that were in the roof, so with tommorrows rain should prove how well I did that! The interview process began yesterday. Laurie and Jen (Salt's manager) interviewed 15 - 20 potential waitstaff and bartenders and came away with a lot of future Salt employees. They all seemed to deal well with the quirky Salt interview process which means they will fit right in. Tommorrow brings our way another auction day in Manhattan. This time Tony and I will being making the trip ourselves, so there should not be any stories of odd buys....such as waiter uniforms and what not! We really need to pray for some warm (50* or more) and dry days in the near future so we can get at least a first coat of paint onto the outside of the us and pray to the paint God's!
Tommorrow I will let you know how the auction went!