Showside Grill & Bakery opened in March 2010 as a basic restaurant and bakery.
It has evolved into much more.
Today, it offers a full restaurant menu, desserts by Contagious Confections, live local entertainment on Friday nights and karaoke on Saturday nights.
The business at 102 Pine St. also offers off-site catering for a wide range of events, including bridesmaid luncheons, retirement parties, weddings, corporate events, family reunions and holiday and private parties. Occasionally, the restaurant itself is leased to private parties.
“We’ve closed the restaurant many times for people who wanted to rent it for an event,” said owner Michael Ward, who is from Maryland and has been in the restaurant business since he was 14.
He decided to buy the restaurant a few years ago after hearing it was for sale.
“I was runninga restaurant in Raleigh, and one of my customers told me that the lady who owned this place was trying to sell it. I was living outside of Spring Hope and working in Raleigh. I didn’t even know it was here.”
No other restaurant in Spring Hope offers the same quality of menu and entertainment as Showside, he said.
Q: What products or services do you provide?
A: We’re a restaurant. We serve steaks, seafood, have live music, karaoke, comedy shows. When we first started out we were more of a neighborhood diner. We served breakfast, lunch and dinner and just, I’d say, typical diner fare.
We stopped serving breakfast a year-and-a-half after I bought it. From there we got a beer and wine license and started serving beer and wine and offering live music on Friday.
Our food is very good. We offer steaks, seafood, pasta, some Asian dishes, sandwiches, appetizers, salads. Of course, we make our own desserts.
Our food is so much different (than other restaurants in the area.) We serve more in line with what you get at a nicer restaurant in the Raleigh area. It’s a very good place to come if you are going to go out on a date or night out to have good time.
We get customers from Rocky Mount, Tarboro, Wilson. We get customers from as far away as Cary and Wake Forest. We do pretty good at drawing people from other areas.
Q: Who are your key leaders?
A: Owner Michael Ward; dining room manager Amber Bryant; and cook Art Ward.
Q: How many people do you employ?
Q: What is your business philosophy?
A: My business philosophy is to give people good food and a good atmosphere and they’ll come back.
Q: What makes your business unique?
A: I would say we’re unique probably for the type of food we serve and the atmosphere and ambiance of restaurant for the area we’re in.
Q: How has your business grown?
A: It has grown with lots of hard work.
Q: What kind of growth do you expect in the coming years?
A: I would hope to double business in the coming years.