by Francesca Piancone

It’s the phone call Jersey Shore restaurants love to get… and the one that’s driving them crazy.

Superstorm Sandy did more than just splinter our beloved boardwalks and leave miles of beach towns in devastation and wreckage. It took from us the iconic eateries, watering holes and gathering places where so many Jersey Shore memories were made. The storm surge blew through hundreds of businesses. Some rebuilt, some are still trying, a few just gave up and walked away. Though bruised and battered, the beaches are all open this summer, as are most—but not all—of the beloved beach businesses.

Here is a snapshot (taken in May) of who’s up and running, and whom you might want to check with before penciling them into you shore itinerary. Most were underwater at one point, or perilously close to it. Please note that some of the “Check Firsts” will be open by the time you read this story—so don’t be scared away. Sadly, others may be gone forever…no matter how many times you check.



Martell’s Tiki Bar • Jenks Club • Red’s Lobster Pot • Spike’s • Offshore


OPEN: Sandy Hook State Park

CHECK FIRST: Sea Gulls’ Nest


OPEN: Woody’s • Harry’s • Ama

CHECK FIRST: Anjelica’s • Donovan’s • McLoone’s


CHECK FIRST: Seaside Boardwalk Casino Pier

Seaside Funtown Pier


OPEN: Whispers • Black Trumpet • The Breakers

Editors Note: The writer’s family owns Johnny Piancone’s in Long Branch. The water never got near the place, and they were up, running and super-busy within a few days.