With half of her restaurant obliterated by Hurricane Sandy early last week, Pepi’s Ristorante co-owner Pepi Nikolov said that as of this weekend, she does not know if she and her husband, Nick, will rebuild or move on.
“We’re still in shock right now,” she said. “We really don’t know what to do until the insurance company gets back to us.”
Nick and Pepi opened Pepi’s 14 years ago in a Peconic Bay-side building with some of the best views of the bay next to the Port of Egypt marina complex off of Route 25 in Southold. With traditional Italian favorites, seafood, and many Long Island wines, Pepi's was a place to unwind after a day on the water or end a day of wine tasting with dinner.
But high tides and winds slammed the deck of the outdoor seating area into the indoor portion of the restaurant last week, leaving much of the restaurant open to the elements. Pepi, who also helps run the Red Rooster in Cutchogue, said that she is working to incorporate menu items from Pepi’s onto the Red Rooster menu, and that she thanks Pepi’s regular customers who have patronized the business for so many years.
“I feel sorry for everyone who lost their houses, their businesses — it’s not only us who lost,” she said. “My heart goes out to everyone.”