NEW BRUNSWICK, NJ - The longtime Old Bay establishment will be replaced by an Irish pub, once the restaurant closes its doors for good in December.

The opening date of the new restaurant, “Blackthorn Irish Pub & Restaurant,” hasn’t been finalized, but the target date is February or March, with renovations starting in January.

Patrons can expect live music on Friday nights and DJs on Saturday nights, on top an entirely new menu. There may also be a second-floor patio and outdoor bar, but the approval for that is still in the work.

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Blackthorn currently operates a pub in Kenilworth, off Route 22 east.​

​Old Bay owners announced their intention to close the store on November 7 on the Old Bay Facebook page, ending a reign of more than 30 years as a culinary institution of the city. 

It was the go-to place for Hurricane drinks, especially during happy hour for thirsty Rutgers students on a budget.​

“I will always be thankful for the countless patrons that have frequented our premises,” wrote owner Anthony Tola. “And give our heartfelt thanks to all the employees that have given their hard labor and dedication into making ​t​he Old Bay the great success it has been over the years.”

Old Bay first opened its doors to the Hub City on May 28, 1987, ​and then served up New Orleans seafood ​and drinks ​for 30 years.

In the weeks following up to the Old Bay’s closure, patrons can stop by for karaoke night every Tuesday through December 19. Then there will be the official “Final Farewell” on December 23, which will include guest bartenders, a buffet and live music, all for a $10 entry fee at the door.

Reporter Daniel J. Munoz, dmunoz@tapinto.nettwitter.com/DanielMunoz100