By Jesse Amorratanasuchad
Business: New York Pizza and Bar
Opening date: June 18
Address: 902 N. State St.
Phone: (360) 318-0580
Square footage: 3,500
Opening a restaurant is like running a marathon, said Jabriel Donohue, bar manager of New York Pizza and Bar in Bellingham.
“Everybody has to work on top of each other to some extent,” Donohue said. “Everybody wants to get the place open as quickly as possible but you have to make sure you’re not cutting corners when you do that. It’s been a blast.”
New York Pizza and Bar opened its doors on June 17 and Donohue said business could not be going any better.
Soft yellow lights reflect along the long, black marble bar top as Donohue and his bartenders serve drinks to a full counter of customers. Donohue said the goal of New York Pizza and Bar is to provide a place where a family can come and have a good meal and a college couple can come and have a good cocktail.
“My big thing about bars is that they’re quality,” Donohue said. “I think there are too many bars where focus is put on cranking drinks out and being an alcohol vendor. A cocktail should be just as good as the food. Quality drinks, served right.”
While Donohue prides himself on constructing a good, refreshing drink, he said Bellingham customers will be in for a surprise when they try the food as well. A fully staffed kitchen is in constant motion to create mouth-watering burgers, pasta and New York-style pizza: a thin, crispy crust and lots of fresh toppings.
In the weeks that the restaurant has been open, Donohue said, customers have been curious about the establishment and it has been attracting patrons at all hours of the day, from businessmen having lunch to large groups coming in for a few pizza pies.
“[This first week] was the ultimate stress test,” Donohue said. “We’ve figured out where all of our weaknesses are pretty instantly. Now we’re really dialed in. The entire staff is spectacular.”