NORTH KINGSTOWN—On Monday evening, the North Kingstown Town Council approved a liquor and entertainment license for Fat Belly’s Pub, who are currently in the final stages of renovation at the former Pelly’s 19th Hole on the North Kingstown Golf Course. After weeks of negotiation, the town has brought a business to the concession which will expand the reach of the golf course, as well as a popular South County restaurant.
“After careful consideration, the town council felt that Fat Belly’s would be successful at the golf course due to its name recognition, their presentation of how to make things work, their familiarity with a ‘golf clientele’ and their ability to get up and running quickly,” said town manager Michael Embury. “[Fat Belly’s] will serve the golfing public, attract non-golfing patrons and have the ability to provide a menu that will attract Quonset Business Park patrons.”
Embury stated that five businesses submitted responses to the town’s call for a new concession at the former Pelly’s, which fell into receivership last year after the owners, the Pelleccione family, struggled with paying bills. Now, the town and Fat Belly’s are hoping that the business will attract greater numbers of restaurant-goers into the area, as well as increase the golfing community there.
“Our first pub is the one over by Goddard Park, [and] we’ve built the basis of Fat Belly’s as a whole at that location,” said Sal Buscemi, vice-president of Operations at Fat Belly’s. “We survived the first couple of years on the golfers, our clientele that got us to where we were able to open up all over the place.”
“We are a big fan of the North Kingstown area, seeing as a lot of our clients are from there,” he continued. “Every location that we open up tends to have different needs based on the community that we are in. With the golf course, we see the banquet side of things [and] the tournaments. There is an area for us to expand on our menu in terms of dinners and entrees.”
Fat Belly’s currently has six locations throughout the state, and locally in East Greenwich, Wakefield and Coventry. Buscemi stated that the business is currently preparing for an opening some time later this month, which is dependent on how quickly health inspections and other loose ends can be completed. Final touches such as menu and hours of operation are yet to be finalized.
“We plan to open up as a full service restaurant, [such as] offer some breakfast options, and we can put some other types of food with the banquets other than the pub food that we are known for” said Buscemi. “We do feel that the Quonset area, and with all the jobs in that area, people looking for another option. We do feel we can bring more people than just the golf course.”
Buscemi emphasized, however, that the Fat Belly’s atmosphere will continue at the North Kingstown site.
“Doing our renovations, we wanted to bring our Fat Belly’s feel and look to the golf course,” he said. “We took the lounge area and made it more indigenous to the European style pub, gave it that nice brick red. Our Main Street location [is] kind of like an Irish pub you’d see in Dublin.”
“You will get a cozy feel in there,” he added. “We’re excited.”