Friday, August 28, 2020

Stockhouse Restaurant & Sandbar Pub to open in Windham

Windham resident Dan Drouin will operate a new sports pub
and restaurant at the site of the former Buck's Naked BBQ
Restaurant which closed in Windham in May. The new
restaurant will employ between 25 and 30 people and Drouin
expects it to be open by October.
By Elizabeth Richards         
The owners of a popular Westbrook restaurant will open a second location in Windham in the fall. Dan Drouin, who operates the Stockhouse Restaurant & Sports Pub in Westbrook, hopes the new location will be open by sometime in October.
Drouin and his wife, Jennifer, will operate the new location under a slightly different name, and with a different slant. Instead of a sports pub theme, Stockhouse Restaurant & Sandbar Pub is intended to highlight its location in the Lakes Region, having a little fun with the theme to create a “lake vibe,” Drouin said.
Stockhouse Restaurant & Sandbar Pub will go into the space formerly occupied by Buck’s Naked BBQ, which closed in late May after indoor dining was delayed in Maine due to the pandemic. Drouin said he is leasing the space, with an agreement to purchase down the road. “It probably wouldn’t be an easy venture right now as a restaurant to purchase a building,” he said.
The new restaurant will employ between 25 and 30 people.  Drouin said that the current permit allows for 130 seats inside, though during COVID restrictions there will be less indoor seating.
“We’ll lose anything I can’t socially distance,” he said, estimating that they would end up with about 75 seats indoors. to Drouin, there are 20 seats outside on the deck and he is also asking for the permit to be extended to the front porch, which would offer approximately 20 additional outdoor seats.
He said if they can get on the agenda for the next Windham Town Council meeting on Sept. 8, they   Either way, he said, the restaurant should be open by Nov. 1.
hope to open early in October. If they have to wait until the meeting on Sept. 22, he said, that will push the opening to later in the fall.
“I can’t think that we would not be open by then,” Drouin said.
Drouin has looked at other locations for a second restaurant in the past few years, he said. He chose the space in Windham because he liked the building and enjoys the community. Drouin lives on the Windham/Standish line off White’s Bridge Road.
 “I looked at the space and immediately my wife and I both felt like that space would fit us,” Drouin said. “Even with what’s going on with the pandemic I think we can get it off the ground and going, and as things get better that will allow the restaurant to grow with us.”
His experience in the Westbrook location makes Drouin confident they can operate safely under the COVID-19 restrictions.
“We’ve learned a lot in the last few months in Westbrook and we’ve been able to maintain a pretty high volume with making sure that we’re doing everything safely,” he said. “I think if you’re consistent, people appreciate the fact that you’re trying to create a safe environment, and we’ll do the same thing in Windham.”
The menu in Windham will be the same broad offerings as they offer in Westbrook, Drouin said, including burgers, wraps, pizza, home cooked specials like shepherds’ pie and turkey dinners, and wings. Because there’s a smoker still at the Windham restaurant, Drouin said that in Windham, once he is comfortable knowing how to smoke wings, he will add those to the wing lineup in Windham.
Drouin said their goal is to provide another family friendly eatery with affordable prices, good food, and a good selection of beer. He said he plans to keep things as consistent as possible, with food and drink specials, and some entertainment if they can do so safely under the current restrictions. <

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