With the closing of Noshi’s Coney Island last fall semester comes a brand new restaurant to fill its retired shoes: the B-Side Grill.
Having reconstructed the Main Street site from the inside-out since late November, co-owners Lou Milano and George Vlamis are hoping to have their place up and running by early to mid February.
“If you’re gonna do it, you gotta do it,” Milano said. “We wanted to get every problem out of the way.”
Vlamis and Milano’s expectations are to not only appeal to the college students who inhabit the village but also to attract the eyes and taste buds of local families.
“We want to try to cater to the college and at the same time be accepted by the local people,” Milano said. “That’s the goal.”
The co-owners plan to have their restaurant open early morning hours for breakfast while also staying open late night for the college and bar crowds.
“You need a place to meet your friends before and you need a place to meet your friends afterwards, ‘cause you don’t know where they might end up,” Milano said. “They might be at P&G’s; they might be at Snug’s; but everyone can say, ‘I’ll meet you at The B-Side: 4 o’clock.’”
Designed to be a “1950’s meets the Rock N’ Roll era” type joint, the grill will have a retro appeal: blue cushioned seats with a white stripe, along with walls featuring murals of famous rock artists such as Pat Benetar and The Beastie Boys.
Milano and Vlamis plan to focus their menu on breakfast, burgers and ice cream, while also keeping their love for music in mind.
All breakfast options will be served all day and night. The menu will include pancakes and waffles with many different toppings including fruit and ice cream, along with burger varieties such as salmon, pulled pork, grilled chicken, beef and vegetarian.
“We’re trying to come up with the rest of our vegetarian menu,” Milano said. “You have to here.”
Having spoken with the previous owner about it, the B-Side Grill plans to use the same burger blend as Noshi’s for all of their tasteful and creative burgers.
Milano and Vlamis have had restaurant experience prior to owning the B-Side Grill. Having met in middle school, these childhood friends started from the bottom with ice cream trucks and later moved on to owning restaurants of their own.
Milano has owned Babba Louie’s, a similar restaurant to that of the B-Side Grill in Modena, New York, for 11 years. Vlamis owned a pizzeria in Ticonderoga, New York as well as a restaurant called the Gold Fox, which closed in Gardiner last year.
Their ice cream expertise is what made them decide to incorporate it as one of their highly-valued menu items. Going along with their specialty burgers and hot dogs, they will also have specialty sundaes — one of which will be called the Porky Pig, made with bacon, wet walnuts, caramel and vanilla ice cream.
Milano and Vlamis also have intentions to build a service window at the front of the food joint.
“We want people to come after hours and be able to get something inexpensive,” Milano said.
Options like milkshakes, ice cream cones and specialty hot dogs are food items that the co-owners expect to be late-night hits, just like they were at Noshi’s.
“It can be quick and casual, instead of having to sit down like at P&G’s,” said Mackenzie Quick, fourth-year public relations student at SUNY New Paltz and cousin of Milano.
Another factor of the B-Side Grill the owners hope will appeal to everyone is on-call delivery — especially to students living on the New Paltz campus.
Though Milano was hesitant to start this restaurant endeavor with Vlamis, a lightbulb went off in his head that made him realize that they “could really make this place work,” and the business to make it work was right there on Main Street.
“The entertainment is here,” Milano said. “There is every walk of life. You just have to open the door and look around.”
The B-Side Grill intends to appeal to these different varieties of life who walk along New Paltz’s Main Street, and that’s what the “B-side” is all about: the opposite side of a record where all of the cool bonus tracks are, according to Milano.
“George said to me, ‘We’re gonna open up this restaurant. I’m gonna open it with or without you.’ And I didn’t want to do it without him,” Milano said.