Brooklyn’s Barcade Eyes Jersey City Expansion

Rumors have been swirling for a few months about an outpost of the popular Williamsburg watering hole Barcade opening in Jersey City, and now the plans are entering the planning pipeline.

The bar, which at its Brooklyn location features 25 craft beers on tap and vintage arcade games, has submitted a minor site plan that is on the agenda for the next Planning Board meeting. The bar is looking at the space most recently occupied by Washington Mutual on the corner of Newark Avenue and Barrow Street in Downtown Jersey City (163-165 Newark Ave.). The plan calls for a “storefront renovation for bar use, with sidewalk cafe.”

Reached by email today, Barcade co-owner Paul Kermizian says the company is “really excited about the possibility of a Jersey City location.” While he adds that he’s unsure of when they will be open, he’d “like to be starting work shortly,” assuming the proposal clears all the city planning hurdles.

We got the Somerset County native (who says this location will be easier for his parents — “they like to come to our beer events” — to get to) to answer a few other quick questions about the potential Jersey City branch.

Why do you think Jersey City is a good spot for a new Barcade?

We think it’s a natural fit. It has a great downtown, a wide variety of people and it already has some cool spots. And the American craft beer + vintage arcade market does not seem to have been cornered yet.

How long have you been interested in a space over here?

Since last year. We started coming out in the late fall and immediately loved it.

How, if at all, will the Jersey City location be different than the Brooklyn one? What all do you plan to offer on this side of the river?

One major difference will be the inclusion of food. We will have a rotating menu of sandwiches. We hope to use mostly locally sourced ingredients. Also, the space we are considering is more of a large storefront, rather than an industrial garage.

The Planning Board meeting is Tuesday, June 29 at 5:30 pm in City Council Chambers at City Hall. Stay tuned.

Jon Whiten

co-founded the Jersey City Independent. He is currently the Deputy Director of New Jersey Policy Perspective.