It’s been a busy first year in the restaurant and bar business in P.E.I. for Michael Perry, better known as “Uncle Mike”.
Perry, who moved back to P.E.I. from Ontario less than two years ago, opened Uncle Mike’s on the Water at Spinnaker’s Landing in Summerside last May, then established a year-round location - Uncle Mike’s Bar and Grill - nearby in the former Big Mug location on Water Street last fall.
Before that first year is up, Perry, who had been in the food service business in Ontario, hopes to have a third P.E.I. location, Uncle Mike’s Up West.
Perry confirmed this week he will be leasing the former Route 145 Bar and Grill location in the Bloomfield Mall. He will be starting renovations soon to add the Uncle Mike’s colours and décor to the location with hopes of being open by early March.
“I just think it has tons of potential” Perry said. “I just feel like it would be a good opportunity for us to expand out there.”
Bloomfield Mall owner Blair Horne is thrilled to have a new tenant moving in, pointing out he’s heard from many local residents who miss having a bar in the mall.
There’s been a bar in the mall for the better part of a decade, and Route 145 Bar and Grill closed Jan. 1 after almost three years of operation.
Uncle Mike’s, Horne suggested, will be “similar but different,” occupying the same footprint as the bar it replaces.
“We’re going to attract more of a family restaurant with breakfast, as well. Not as much night life. More family-oriented,” Perry said.
He expects to have a staff of 10 full- and part-time employees in Bloomfield and described the atmosphere as “fun, outgoing, family-oriented, exciting. Entertaining. Clean.”
Perry said his restaurants are already known for having the best fish and chips in P.E.I. and the place to get authentic Montreal smoked meat.
“He’s looking to see what people want up here,” Horne said. “If he provides a service that people want, they will certainly support him up here.”
As word started to filter out that Uncle Mike’s was expanding west, Horne said several people have dropped in to try out the Summerside location and are now looking forward to experiencing that product in Bloomfield.