Jersey City’s Iron Monkey, Just BeClaws to Close This Month

Iron Monkey Jersey City Closing
Iron Monkey in Jersey City is closing. Image via Iron Monkey.

A staple of Exchange Place for three decades and a trailblazer near Grove Street will be signing off at the end of 2023 as Iron Monkey and Just BeClaws have both announced their final days in business.

Situated in a historic brick building at 99 Greene Street, Iron Monkey announced their somewhat surprising closure after a lengthy run. The business has been holding it down in Exchange Place since 1995 and hosted an annual free Thanksgiving meal for Jersey City residents in need.

“Over the years, we have had the honor of hosting numerous celebrations and building lasting friendships,” the post read. “We express our deepest gratitude for allowing us the privilege of serving you and being part of this wonderful community.”

Iron Monkey, known for the pub fare and rooftop space, had a front row seat to the massive changes that have taken place in the neighborhood. Both the Goldman Sachs Tower and 99 Hudson, two of the tallest structures in not only Jersey City but the entire Garden State, didn’t even exist when Iron Monkey opened their doors. Their rooftop at one point had a view of Manhattan that has long been obstructed.

The business will be offering a 50% discount on vintage tap beers during their closing run, with their final day being set for New Years Eve.

Just Beclaws Downtown Newark 1
Just Beclaws is also closing this month.

Further inland but still Downtown, Just BeClaws on First Street also announced via Instagram that it’ll permanently close on December 23. The Cajun-style BYOB seafood restaurant opened in 2015 and saw big changes take place in the neighborhood, most notably the creation of the Newark Avenue Pedestrian Plaza.

“We understand that this news may come as a surprise, and we want to assure you that this decision was made after careful consideration of various factors, including market conditions and other business considerations,” their announcement said.

Competition from The Boil, another seafood spot that opened down the street in 2020, could have played a role in the fate of Just BeClaws.

The closing of two longtime Jersey City eateries come just days after Corgi Distillery announced the end of their run after being informed by their landlord that their lease will not be extended.

The rash of closures is somewhat reminiscent of the final days of 2019 and early 2020, when Jersey City saw too many businesses close their doors during a winter that pre-dated the COVID-19 pandemic. Hopefully Jersey City’s end of 2023 doesn’t hold a similar fate.


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