(Source: Bruce A. Scruton, New Jersey Herald, http://www.njherald.com/story/26707669/new-restaurant-planned-in-newton) NEWTON — A new restaurant, Spring Street Pub and Grill, is planned to open late this month in the former Spring House restaurant, more recently J.C.s Grill House.
The space, which is undergoing renovations, is being leased by Kevin Stender, who once owned the Top Notch restaurants in Madison and Montclair. Stender, 40, said he owned the Madison restaurant for 13 years, but when the lease was up, the owner wanted too much for rent. “And this opportunity came along,” he said of the building at 144 Spring St. “It’s a great building and Newton is the hub of Sussex County.” A graduate of the Culinary Institute of America in Hyde Park, N.Y., Stender grew up in the restaurant business. “My father (Hans) taught me the business, and my mother (Toni) will be here helping,” he said. The restaurant will continue to have several rooms, able to host parties on one side of the building and a general public dining room in the rear of the other side. In the front is the pub, although it won’t be modeled after a neighborhood Irish or English tavern. Behind the marble bar is a large mirror with a carved wooden frame. Tall bar tables and chairs line the opposite wall. In the private party dining room Stender has added a corner fireplace which, for now, will house decorative candles but at a future date can use natural gas. “I like hosting the private parties,” Stender said, adding he can tailor meals for almost any taste or occasion, from an engagement party or anniversaries to showers and business luncheons.
Spring Street Pub and Grill will be open seven days a week and will have a full lunch menu, including a $7.95 soup and salad lunch. From 4 to 6 p.m. will be the early diner menu with the full menu dinner of a four-course meal for after 6 p.m. The menu will be varied, he said, “from hamburger to veal parmesan and sauerbraten. The style will be American, Italian and German “to fit my family heritage.” A resident of Rockaway, Stender said, “I love Newton and the historical part of it. And, there are people looking to move up here. I think the town is going to be successful.”