Co-owner plans to reopen vacant Pepper Mill space as new restaurant
Erinâs Pub co-owner Chris Andrews is shown outside the business inâSt.âJohnâs in November. The pub is under repair after a water pipe burst.
â File photo by Joe Gibbons/The Telegram
A burst water pipe at Erinâs Pub has forced the new owners to shut the doors while repairs are done.
Chris Andrews of the band Shanneyganock, co-owner of the pub with Bob Hallett of Great Big Sea, said a pipe burst Sunday morning between the second and third floor of the building, flooding the street-level pub, causing tens of thousands of dollars in damage, including the destruction of the live venueâs sound equipment.
âItâs certainly something we werenât looking forward to, but thatâs life, thatâs business,â said Andrews on Tuesday. âWeâre totally destroyed down there. The main goal now is to try to get her open for St. Patrickâs.â
The pub is covered for at least some of the damage, said Andrews, although the insurance is still being sorted out. He wasnât sure of the dollar value of the damage, but estimated that itâs in the tens of thousands of dollars.
It could have been worse, said Andrews. âThings happen to people. Weâre a business, and weâre just starting, and it hurts, thereâs no doubt about it,â he said. âBut it didnât burn down. No one got hurt. At the end of the day, itâs a horrible thing that happened, but we will survive, and we will come back, thereâs no doubt in our minds. Itâs just a little blow on a mighty ship, we keep saying.â
The flood was beneficial for some, Andrews noted wryly: a documentary crew filming the musiciansâ reopening of the pub.
âItâs unreal that this thing captured our raw emotions,â he said. âThe guys were in with their cameras literally 10 hours after the flood, and it was strange to see them shooting and going, âOh, thatâs a great shot!â and Iâm going, âMy pub, something we worked so hard for, is washing away here!â Thereâs a difficulty to it, and thereâs worries about the staff and bands that we have booked for St. Patrickâs day.â
Complicating matters is St. Pat-rickâs is a busy time for the Celtic-flavoured bands that are Hallettâs and Andrewsâ primary job, he said, since theyâll both be out of town in March. They do have someone who manages the pub while theyâre gone, he said.
âHeâll have his hands full now.â
In more upbeat news for the owners, though, Andrews confirmed that the recently closed Pepper Mill restaurant next door has been bought by Hallett, who Andrews said plans to reopen it as a new restaurant that will stand on its own and also supply the pub with food.
âThe restaurant will be Bobâs. Weâre certainly into it together on certain levels, but itâs Bobâs baby,â he said.
The spaces will remain separate, said Andrews.
âThis is something he wanted to do, so itâs sort of like Bob will be the restaurant and Iâll be the pub. Itâs good to be able to take on different things and have a go at it. Heâs always wanted a restaurant, and I always wanted a pub, so itâs worked out great.â