Q: What happened to the Bridgeport/Ridgeport Pub? It was located in the shopping center on the corner of Airport Pulling and Pine Ridge behind McDonald’s. They served a great breaded pork tenderloin sandwich as one of their specials. Anything like this around today? Thank you.
? Marlene, Bonita Springs
A: Ridgeport Pub, its name created from the “Ridge” in Pine Ridge and the “port” in Airport ? the two roads bordering its location in the Bed, Bath Beyond Plaza in North Naples ? closed in October 2006 after falling on tough times.
The reincarnated rock ‘n’ roll bar couldn’t survive a year full of hurricane publicity, followed by a shooting inside the pub.
First, 2005 was the most active Atlantic hurricane season in history, with 28 storms and 15 hurricanes, including hurricanes Katrina and Wilma ?wholesale jerseys from china respectively the costliest and most intense Atlantic hurricanes on record. Visitors stayed away.
After a poor winter season, the pub couldn’t recover after it made local news when four people were wounded in a late night weekend shooting following an argument between two men at a private party there in April 2006. One of the best venues in which to see area bands eventually received an eviction notice and closed, according to news reports.
Today, the location, 5425 Airport Pulling Road, is home to Blue Fish Japanese Steakhouse and Sushi Bar, which features a seafood buffet.
As for locating another local bar with a good breaded pork tenderloin sandwich, some contenders would be Jack’s Bait Shack seafood bar and grill, 975 Imperial Golf Course Blvd., North Naples; Alice Sweetwater’s Neighborhood Bar and Grille, 1996 Airport Pulling Road S., East Naples; and North Naples Country Club, 874 101st Ave N., Naples Park. Each has patrons proclaiming it the home of the best pork tenderloin sandwich in Naples.
The wiener schnitzel sandwich at Peppers Fine Foods, 4165 Corporate Square, East Naples, also is popular. Perhaps a local contest is needed. When did Service Merchandise close in Naples? I believe it was before 2000; my friend thinks it was more recently. Thanks.
? Nicholas Shaffer, Naples
A: Your friend wins if he said the store closed after 2000.
Service Merchandise closed its Naples location in early 2002 when the national chain ceased operation. Its Carillon Place location off Airport Pulling Road eventually became Circuit City, and now is hhgregg.
At one time an industry leading catalog showroom store, Service Merchandise filed bankruptcy in 1999 and eventually folded, closing all of its remaining stores by early 2002. Service Merchandise resurfaced in 2004 with only a retail presence online.
Circuit City, which closed at that same Naples location in early 2009, followed a similar route as Service Merchandise: bankruptcy and liquidation, followed by the eventual resurfacing as a retail outlet on the Internet.
Local restaurant news
? Caf WOW Bakery and Restaurant is opening Dec. 1 in Mercato, according to its website and a sign posted on the door of its future location, 9115 Strada Place, Unit 8150, next door to AZN Azian Cuizine. Both AZN and Caf WOW are directly under the Silverspot Cinema on the second floor.
The newest eatery joins more than a dozen others in the upscale North Naples development. That uptown roundabout is already a frequented nightspot with the cinema, the Pub and AZN, with Pure across the street.
? Simply Southern BBQ opened Aug. 22 in Naples at 600 Goodlette Frank Road N., Suite 101, said owner/chef Mikkel Brinson. The new local barbecue joint is on the northern end of Empire Plaza, the same strip center as Bambusa Bar Grill. Simply Southern specializes in pulled pork and St. Louis style ribs, and also features smoked chicken and beef brisket.
? The Pita Pit, originally planning to open during the first week in August, finally opened Thursday at 1427 Pine Ridge Road, the former Quiznos Sub location between Rosedale Brick Oven Pizzeria and Starbucks in North Naples’ Magnolia Square. The growing chain, founded in Canada, serves a large selection of Lebanese style pita sandwich wraps and salads.
? Bert’s Seafood and Chowder House will reopen this fall after a short summer hiatus. Bert’s, 862 Fifth Ave. S., downtown Naples, closed at the end of July for an extensive remodeling, and originally planned to reopen in late October, but that date is not set in stone, said co owner Bill Babamov. The business may reopen sooner, if the 2011 12 season has an early start.
Bert’s, which plans to expand its bar, outdoor seating and live music, will have more than a new look.http://www.cheapjerseysgty4.top It will have a new name, Babamov said.
After inviting customers to help choose a name for the restaurant, the owners soon will announce the new name and the winner will receive a $1,000 gift certificate. Because the creator of the new name has not been notified yet, Babomov is not ready to reveal it, he said.
The old name hasn’t been around that long. Bert’s reopened under new ownership when the original Bert’s closed in January after operating for only a year at the former site of Corks Steakhouse Wine Bar.
? Jana’s Little Prague Restaurant, 289 Ninth St. S., is no longer open for lunch, but the new Czech restaurant has an extraordinary dining promotion: Patrons pick the prices. After the Naples restaurant gave the idea a test run for a few recent weekends, co owner/chef Jana Conte is letting diners pick the price of their meal every day for anything on her menu. Instead of a limited special on Sunday, the new menu also will be expanded to include the crispy duck, goose, trout and salmon, according to co owner Douglas Conte. every day except Monday. Reservations are recommended, Conte said.
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