WRIGHTSVILLE BEACH — Island life isn’t always the easiest, from sunburns to having to travel off the island to find a bite to eat. That’s why restaurateurs Alan and Jennifer Giaquinto decided to open the Shark Bar at Wrightsville Beach.
The Husband and wife team purchased the building which used to be the home to Buddy’s Crab House and Oyster Bar several months ago, and have been busy renovating the spot to get ready for an opening.
The Shark Bar is not quite open yet, but they hope to have a soft opening by Labor Day, followed by a grand opening event once things are moving smoothly.
While the front door from Buddy’s will remain, the rest of the interior, from kitchen appliances to the hardwood floors, are new. The owners have even upgraded the exterior landscaping, which are filled with agave plants and succulents.
Alan and Jennifer are not originally from Wrightsville Beach, but the Giaquinto’s live on the south end of the island now. The interior of the restaurant will offer about 60 seats and a fully stocked bar. The wood for the bar, as well as the floors are all reclaimed wood from trees that have been destroyed by bugs or fire, and the tile accents are direct from Mexico.
“All of the wood is from New Mexico and Arizona, and we work with a company that partners with the Indian reservations, so all of the wood is either bark beetle killed or wild fire, that’s why it is charred,” Jennifer said.
“We want to do good, simple food with quality ingredients.” – Jennifer Giaquinto
Customers can expect a range of food, although the Shark Bar will be seafood heavy, there will be plenty of options for land lubbers, she said. Hiring is already complete as well, with James Mazzio at the helm as executive chef, and Scott Serratt as Kitchen Supervisor. All sauces and dressing will be made in house she said.
“We’re going to do raw oysters, we’ll do tuna poke, shrimp cocktail and fresh hand battered seafood baskets, and then we will do some bar food some homemade mac and cheese with bacon jalapeno and wings … We want to do good, simple food with quality ingredients,” Jennifer said.
For now, the owners are focused on getting the restaurant open, but there are more plans for the future of the Shark Bar, like possibly opening the upstairs as a lounge or secondary bar area.
“Were thinking about doing a custom tequila, or house tequila and we want to start doing a house roasted coffee. We work with a small roaster in Chattanooga right now, but we want to start sourcing our own beans and roasting them, but that’s for next year,” Jennifer said.
Shark Bar is located at 13 East Salisbury St. in Wrightsville Beach.
Michael Praats can be reached via email at Michael.email@example.com