The new Princeton Brasserie, is an approachable French brasserie serving breakfast, lunch, and dinner. Celano Designs approach was to create a fresh contemporary design with details of traditional brasserie influences. The menu will be inspired by French brasserie staples with a contemporary interpretation and list broadly appealing choices at a fair price. The venue will offer two different spaces as well as a private dining room. The setting is to be modest, comfortable, and can accommodate private events. Both the bar and the dining room will function to transform from day to night says Vincent Celano. During the day, the spaces are bright, clean, and contemporary. In the evening they transition into warmer, comfortable, and vibrant rooms.
The entrance opens up to the bar, which originally served as the restored station’s storage room. This space has a more casual bistro atmosphere anchored by a massive white oak bar and a lighter white washed back drop. The back wall features typical French mirrors and frames the original luggage scales used in the building. Elegant and light custom decorative pendants hang over the bar counter, and a bright patterned floor tile surrounds it. Various seating options are offered in this first room, from high top bar stools to bistro chairs. The original benches from the old train station are being repurposed as banquettes. The ceiling has been designed in continuation with the back bar by pulling the lightness up, and will provide an additional level of acoustical support.
The second space beyond, is the more refined dining room mentions Astrix Ferris, the Interior Design project manager on the project, it features a large custom designed chandeliers hanging between exposed wood rafters in the vaulted ceiling that highlight the building architecture. A wood wainscot anchors the surrounding walls, and a large feature piece mirror will provide a decorative backdrop both on the fireplace mantel and the opposite wall. The flooring is an elegant perimeter stone with large inset area carpets at the dining areas. These carpets will feature a custom contemporary water color pattern inspired from the brasserie art era and tying into the overall brand. Large operable doors connect the main dining room with the outdoor patio. This relationship brings vibrant energy outside, and the freshness of a park like setting inside.
The brand identity for the brasserie is simple, French-inspired, light, and modern. The building’s former function as a train station luggage room will also act as an important influence to the design direction. The restaurant’s new position as a French brasserie will help influence the brand identity, but not define it.