Co-owner plans to reopen vacant Pepper Mill space as new restaurant
Erin‚Äôs Pub co-owner Chris Andrews is shown outside the business in‚ÄąSt.‚ÄąJohn‚Äôs in November. The pub is under repair after a water pipe burst.
‚ÄĒ File photo by Joe Gibbons/The Telegram
A burst water pipe at Erin‚Äôs 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 venue‚Äôs sound equipment.
‚ÄúIt‚Äôs certainly something we weren‚Äôt looking forward to, but that‚Äôs life, that‚Äôs business,‚ÄĚ said Andrews on Tuesday. ‚ÄúWe‚Äôre totally destroyed down there. The main goal now is to try to get her open for St. Patrick‚Äôs.‚ÄĚ
The pub is covered for at least some of the damage, said Andrews, although the insurance is still being sorted out. He wasn‚Äôt sure of the dollar value of the damage, but estimated that it‚Äôs in the tens of thousands of dollars.
It could have been worse, said Andrews. ‚ÄúThings happen to people. We‚Äôre a business, and we‚Äôre just starting, and it hurts, there‚Äôs no doubt about it,‚ÄĚ he said. ‚ÄúBut it didn‚Äôt burn down. No one got hurt. At the end of the day, it‚Äôs a horrible thing that happened, but we will survive, and we will come back, there‚Äôs no doubt in our minds. It‚Äôs just a little blow on a mighty ship, we keep saying.‚ÄĚ
The flood was beneficial for some, Andrews noted wryly: a documentary crew filming the musicians‚Äô reopening of the pub.
‚ÄúIt‚Äôs unreal that this thing captured our raw emotions,‚ÄĚ he said. ‚ÄúThe guys were in with their cameras literally 10 hours after the flood, and it was strange to see them shooting and going, ‚ÄėOh, that‚Äôs a great shot!‚Äô and I‚Äôm going, ‚ÄėMy pub, something we worked so hard for, is washing away here!‚Äô There‚Äôs a difficulty to it, and there‚Äôs worries about the staff and bands that we have booked for St. Patrick‚Äôs day.‚ÄĚ
Complicating matters is St. Pat-rick‚Äôs is a busy time for the Celtic-flavoured bands that are Hallett‚Äôs and Andrews‚Äô primary job, he said, since they‚Äôll both be out of town in March. They do have someone who manages the pub while they‚Äôre gone, he said.
‚ÄúHe‚Äôll have his hands full now.‚ÄĚ
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.
‚ÄúThe restaurant will be Bob‚Äôs. We‚Äôre certainly into it together on certain levels, but it‚Äôs Bob‚Äôs baby,‚ÄĚ he said.
The spaces will remain separate, said Andrews.
‚ÄúThis is something he wanted to do, so it‚Äôs sort of like Bob will be the restaurant and I‚Äôll be the pub. It‚Äôs good to be able to take on different things and have a go at it. He‚Äôs always wanted a restaurant, and I always wanted a pub, so it‚Äôs worked out great.‚ÄĚ