Bronx Chamber helps in grand opening of Pine Bar & Grill

Get ready for a Manhattan foodie dining experience right nearby on Eastchester Road. Pretty much everyone knows about F & J Pine restaurant in Morris Park, but now the same owners have opened a new place, a very different dining experience, on 1634 Eastchester Road: Pine Bar & Grill.

The establishment has a valet service, ample dining space and bar inside two floors. But most inviting of all, a rooftop cafe with greenery, a bar, and umbrella-sheltered tables. After a quiet “soft opening” the week before, Pine Bar & Grill had its festive grand opening on Wednesday night, June 2. Numerous members of the Bronx Chamber of Commerce showed up to help kick off the new business, and many people couldn’t stop raving about the menu’s offerings, which manager Jennifer Francica said matches its posh decor.

“It’s an American grille with a Latin infusion,” she said. “The other Pine is very traditional and old world, whereas we are more trendy and new wave. So I think we’ll get a lot of their customers, and they’ll continue to run a beloved place too.”

Indeed, F & J Pine has its faithfuls, but Pine Bar & Grill will serve up what many claim is a Manhattan-style menu.

“In 1969, the Bastone family started in the restaurant business with F & J Pine,” announced Lenny Caro, president of the Bronx Chamber of Commerce, in a speech on the rooftop. “Now, with the big boom in the Bronx, we’re lucky enough to have their second restaurant, bringing us the new Manhattan flavor.”

During the opening, as drinks and hors d’oeuvre were served, people mingled, shook hands and discussed the elegance of the new restaurant. “This place is gorgeous, it’s not like anything I’ve seen in the Bronx, said Jeff Scheck of Scheck Outdoor.

Lance Cabanas, who used to live right around the corner from the restaurant but has since moved to Miami to run his clothing line, Juxed Goods, couldn’t help but agree.

“They did big things with this,” he said proudly. “My old neighbor and friend is a head waiter here, so I had to come back and see.”

As a young, new manager, Francica was elated with the grand opening, to her relief. “Everyone had a great time,” she said. “People went nuts for the decor, said it was very chic and modern. And the bonus is the rooftop. Everyone loved it up there.” Francica also mentioned that the restaurant hopes to be very in touch with the community and host events in support of local Bronx causes.

Marlene Cintron, president of the BOEDC, smiled as she tried a snack from one of the fancy platters going around. “I’ve got the most wonderful job in the world,” she said. “I get to turn out-of-towners on to the Bronx, and now, I’m going to add this to my list of wonderful places to show off.”

Reach Daniel Roberts at (718) 742-3383.

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