The former home of P.J. Ryan’s at the corner of Barrow and Mercer streets has been shrouded in mystery since that bar closed last year, but a Garden State hospitality group is currently hard at work renovating the space into a new concept that looks like it will debut next year.
Way back in 2017, former owners P.J. Ryan’s listed their business at 292 Barrow Street for lease, a deal that included the transfer of their liquor license. The bar eventually found a taker in Skopos Hospitality Group, which was founded in 2015 by brothers Thomas and Dean Maroulakos.
The company has previously transformed a local dive bar in Nutley into Cowan’s Public, which operates as a 1930’s-style public house with a nostalgic, speakeasy charm. Their second endeavor, The Barrow House, went more upscale by converting a former farmhouse in Clifton into a 230-seat restaurant.
Skopos Hospitality’s first foray into Hudson County just opened and is dubbed The Vanguard, which is located inside the Harrison Station development. The group’s entry into Jersey City started to rev up in July when new construction permits were pulled at their future Barrow Street home.
Not to be confused with Jersey Social or The Franklin, Skopos Hospitality’s upcoming Franklin Social will be utilizing all 2,500 square feet of space in the building that includes a back patio and an upstairs party room. The restaurant’s website calls it a tavern and garden, although little else has been revealed about the endeavor.
Skopos Hospitality’s other restaurants serve food that they classify as “rustic American,” but it’s unclear in what culinary direction Franklin Social will be going. An inquiry placed with the company regarding the restaurant’s future has yet to be returned.
Franklin Social recently created an Instagram account at the handle @franklinsocial where they’ve teased some behind-the-scenes work going on with the business. No opening date has been announced, but sometime in 2020 seems like a safe bet.