After more than two decades of making hurricanes and mudslides for Greenport tourists and locals, Beth Pike is stepping out from behind the bar and into a new role.
The Mattituck resident, bartender, registered nurse, real estate agent and single mom of four grown kids is opening Deep Water Bar and Grille on Front Street in Greenport. Set to open May 8, the eatery is located in the space that most recently housed BBQ Bill’s restaurant.
“My last child graduated from college and my children said, ‘Mom, what are you going to do now?’ ” Pike said Sunday while showing off the new space. “I started out in the restaurant industry and now I’m ending up here.”
Pike, 58, said she worked three jobs to pay the bills after her divorce 22 years ago. But the long hours never got her down.
“There’s two kinds of people in the world: those who go to work to pay their bills and those who go to work because they love what they do,” she said. “Sure, it was a way to make money, but I loved the people.”
Pike said Deep Water Bar and Grille will be open seven days a week year-round, which is less common for eateries in tourist-driven Greenport. She described its price point as “user-friendly.”
“If you go out, you shouldn’t have to break the bank,” she said.
Jorge Castellanos, who most recently worked at Digger’s Ales and Eats in Riverhead, has signed on as head chef. He described the fare at Deep Water as “new American with a focus on seafood.”
“The menu is not fully complete, but we’re going to keep it very interesting and very fresh,” he said Monday. “Emphasis on fresh.”
Another touch: the restaurant will offer to-go service and dockside delivery. Pike described the uniform the takeout servers will wear as something out of “Gilligan’s Island” and hopes it will make them stand out near boat slips.
“You’re going to know that guy comes from here,” she said.
Pike, along with her family and friends, have been renovating the restaurant’s building. Changes include an overhaul of the second floor, which features views of Greenport Harbor and will be dubbed “Beth’s Upper Deck.” The walls had a fresh coat of dark blue paint and new ceiling fans during Sunday’s tour.
“I’ll be putting white tablecloths down with little candles and we’ll be serving food up there until we close,” Pike said. “I want a place where you can have an intelligent conversation and enjoy yourself.”
Pike’s renovation crew includes customers from her 18 years of bartending at Claudio’s who have become friends, like Bob Pon of East Setauket. Pon has been volunteering his time to help get the new space in shape for opening day.
“She’s a very dear friend,” Pon said. “Once it’s open, I’ll be here every weekend.”
Deep Water Bar and Grille is located at 47 Front St. in Greenport. Beginning May 8, it will be open from 11 a.m. to midnight Sunday through Thursday and from 11 a.m. to 1 a.m. Friday and Saturday. For more information, call 631-333-2168.