CELORON - If you are a fish fry fan looking for a new place to enjoy one then there is a new restaurant in Celoron worth trying.
The Harbor Grill, 142 Boulevard Ave., Celoron, is the new restaurant with an extensive menu, said David Van Ness, business owner. Van Ness, along with his sister, Aleda Van Ness, and chef, Patrick Leitch, have teamed up to bring their lifelong experience in the restaurant business to the Harbor Grill.
Van Ness, who once helped operate The Village Casino in Bemus Point, said he has more than 20 years experience working in the restaurant business and is looking to share his knowledge of fine dining with area residents.
Harbor Grill, 142 Boulevard Ave., Celoron, will be hosting a grand opening Wednesday, with unique specials being served. The restaurant opened June 29 and is becoming known for its fresh cod fish fry.
P-J photo by Dennis Phillips
''I'm looking to get my foot in the door in my own place,'' he said. ''Things have fallen into the right place to make this happen. Things are going good, and I would like to keep the ball rolling.''
The Harbor Grill will be hosting a grand opening Wednesday, with unique specials being offered to those looking to dine next to Chautauqua Lake. Van Ness said the restaurant opened June 29 and has received a positive response so far with several repeat diners. Van Ness said he wouldn't have been able to get the restaurant started without assistance from several community members.
''The community has assisted with opening the restaurant. Charles Pringle, from Holiday Harbor, and Mike Anderson, from M&M Enterprises, have been great,'' Van Ness said. ''They've really come forward to make this a reality.''
The restaurant owner said people can visit the Harbor Grill via boat, with slips people can dock at while enjoying their meal, either indoors or outdoors.
''One of the great things for people coming by boat is Holiday Harbor (which is next to the restaurant) has the cheapest gas you can purchase on the lake,'' he said. ''What a great deal. Bring your boat down, enjoy a fresh meal and get the best price on gas on the lake.''
Van Ness said, so far, people have enjoyed the fresh, line-caught cod, which is hand-battered for a light, flaky taste.
''The fish fry is fresh. From boat to door in less than two days,'' he said. ''People are also enjoying our chophouse burger, which is all steak on a crescent bun. All of our products are made fresh. All of our dressings are homemade.''
Van Ness said he is receiving several compliments from customers on the interior of the restaurant, which features a great view of the lake.
''I love the ambiance. The restaurant is styled to make people feel comfortable,'' he said. ''We have a number of windows, so people can get a great view of the water and the boats.''
Van Ness said he received his start in the restaurant business by working at Morton's of Chicago in Manhattan. He said he enjoyed working in New York City, but was also missing Chautauqua County.
''They taught me everything I know,'' he said. ''I enjoyed it a great deal, but I found myself visiting areas outside of the city that are similar to here. So I thought, 'Why not just come back home?'''
The Harbor Grill is open 11 a.m. to 10 p.m. Monday through Thursday, 11 a.m. to 11 p.m. Friday, breakfast 8 a.m. to 10:30 a.m., with lunch and dinner until 11 p.m. Saturday and 8 a.m. to 2 p.m. brunch, with lunch and dinner until 8 p.m. Sunday. For more information call 720-5959. Call-ahead service is available for large dining parties.