New restaurants arrive in the former Bokamper’s, The Counter in Naples
Q: Is Bokamper’s in Naples totally closed? We hadn’t seen an update on them and were surprised to see it quite empty.
— Pat Renzulli Carter, Napoli
A: Although his phone message reads, “We are currently closed for routine maintenance,” Bokamper’s North Naples Sports Bar & Grill location closed permanently in May after operating for more than a decade.
PDKN Restaurant Group, the Plantation-based company that owns and operates Bokamper’s, led by former Miami Dolphins player Kim “Bo” Bokamper and three other partners, recently sold the 10,500-square-foot restaurant space along of Vanderbilt Beach Road for $4,675,000 to Aegean Estiatorio Inc., reports Investment Properties Corp. from Napoli. The real estate transaction was brokered by Patrick Fraley and David Stevens of IPC.
Coming to the location of the former Bokamper is Estia, “where your authentic Greek Mediterranean dining experience comes to life,” reports IPC. This will be the first Florida location for Estia Restaurant Group, which operates three fine dining restaurants in Philadelphia; Radnor, Pennsylvania; and Marlton, New Jersey. “They are excited to open their first location in the Naples area,” Mr. Fraley said.
Popular dishes on Estia’s menu will include grilled whole European sea bass, charcoal-grilled octopus and salmon, classic Greek salads and Estia Crisps – thinly sliced zucchini and eggplant lightly fried and served with a dipping sauce. tzatziki. Expect all the traditional Greek dishes, said Gus Pashalis, regional manager at Estia Restaurant Group.
“We’re trying to elevate it and not make it just a casual affair,” the Johnson & Wales graduate said. “In other words, this won’t be your traditional Greek restaurant.”
Don’t expect to dine at the new Estia until 2023. “It’ll be a year or a year and a half,” Pashalis said. “Right now, I’m trying to lock up an architect. It is a very difficult time to open a business.
A description of Estia’s existing restaurants hints at planned renovations inside the Naples site. “The cozy ambience is accentuated by an interior courtyard, with whitewashed walls, a deep blue ceiling, and a living olive tree,” notes Estia’s website. “We used materials such as hand-chiseled Jerusalem limestone floors, hand-woven rugs, vaulted ceilings, antique stucco walls, wooden floors and exposed beams to evoke the traditional feel. . A series of dining rooms feature rustic farmhouse tables, dark wood chairs with beige throw pillows, and dining nooks with upholstered banquettes.
Pashalis said he was happy with Naples’ location, minutes from two Ritz-Carlton resorts. It plans to hire 80 to 100 employees. “We’re here for the long haul,” he said.
In June 2010, Bokamper’s Restaurant Group purchased the Vanderbilt Galleria condominium unit at 8990 Fontana Del Sol Way for $2.65 million and launched in early 2011. IPC’s Stevens also managed this transaction.
Since the commercial condo was built in 2001, the restaurant property has sold two more times. It opened as Sanibel Steakhouse and became The Keg Steakhouse & Bar in 2008.
Two locations of Bokamper’s Sports Bar & Grill continue to operate in Fort Lauderdale and Plantation, where the dining concept was founded in 2008. A third location in Miramar, also in Broward County, is “closed for renovations,” according to Bokampers.com. After a five-month hiatus last year, the Naples restaurant relaunched in the fall with the addition of Bo’s BBQ menu items. Bokamper’s fifth location at Coconut Point in Estero closed permanently in 2020.
Q: Has the Comptoir du Mercato closed? Passed yesterday and today (May 15) and it was locked with no sign to indicate why. Thanks for all your research to keep us posted!
– Margaret C.
A: Comptoir Custom Burgers closed in May after operating for 10 years at Mercato. The counter opted not to renew its lease, said Valerie Cope, senior director of marketing at Mercato, a Madison Marquette property.
The build-your-own gourmet burger chain opened in 2012 in the middle of North Naples’ mixed-use center. Its only remaining location in Florida is at Miami International Airport.
“We have signed a Letter of Intent (Letter of Intent) and are in active lease negotiations with a new fine dining concept,” Ms. Cope said. “We expect the lease to be finalized imminently.”
Additional information about a new restaurant was not available.
Waiting for the butcher
Q: Wondering where Butcher’s opening is?
—Bob Tamburini, Bonita Springs
A: Construction of Butcher in north Naples is expected to be completed in August, but due to staff training and finishing details – including storing 80,000 bottles of wine – the restaurant is expected to open in October, Veljko said. Pavicevic, co-owner of upscale local restaurants Butcher and Sails with Corinne Ryan.
“The work on the outside looks small, but it’s really about finishing and lots of detailing on the inside,” Mr Pavicevic said.
Work began last year with the gutting of the former Agave Mexican restaurant and bar space near the southwest corner of Airport Pulling and Vanderbilt Beach Road. Originally slated to open last November, Butcher is almost a year behind schedule due to supply issues and an insistence on expert craftsmanship and bespoke quality products.
“In Napoli you only get one first chance so whoever comes must be blown away,” said Mr Pavicevic. “We are opening Butcher for long-term investment.” ¦
“Tim Aten Knows” is published weekly in Naples Florida Weekly. Email your questions to [email protected] Follow @TimAten-Knows on Facebook, Instagram, LinkedIn and Twitter.