OCEAN CITY — For a local man, a dream has come true as the restaurant where he started out busing tables he now owns.
Peaky’s Rooftop Restaurant & Bar officially opened Feb. 27. Owner Justin Schaub received the keys on December 24 and it was only a couple days later he and his team were in there making cosmetic repairs.
“We have had a great response … we have had a soft opening and plan on a grand opening hopefully in late April,” he said. “We want to make sure we have all the kinks worked out.”
The space on the top floor of the Fenwick Inn on 138th Street was previously Jordan’s Rooftop Restaurant, owned by Al Jordan, for 20 years followed by Skyline Bar & Grill for 20 months.
“I will be here for 30 years,” Schaub said breaking the mold.
Peaky’s Restaurant originated in Princess Anne over 50 years ago and was owned by the Peacock family until Schaub’s family bought it in 2007. The new owners kept the traditions of the restaurant alive, such as Peaky’s famous prime rib, crab cake and fried chicken recipes.
Schaub grew up in Salisbury and upon graduating from high school he began working at Jordan’s Rooftop Restaurant as a busboy until he left to work at Harpoon Hanna’s and then onto Brew River in Salisbury, which are both owned by the Hanna family. It was when Schaub’s family took over Peaky’s in Princess Anne he put all the experience he had gained from the local restaurants to good use.
Throughout his different positions in the local restaurants and at Peaky’s, the rooftop restaurant location always lingered in his mind.
“Over the years, I just kept my ears open listening for it because I knew this place would become available someday and I always wanted it, always,” he said. “When it became available, I was able to do it. I think it has a lot of potential.”
Schaub kept the core values of Peaky’s in opening its second location atop the Fenwick Inn, except for adding more seafood as it caters to Ocean City, but still offering its famous prime rib and fried chicken.
“We use traditional Eastern Shore recipes,” he said. “The fried chicken is cooked to order … you may have to come in and wait 20 minutes but it is cooked to order, and I think that is why people like it so much.”
While Peaky’s may not sit on the water, Schaub said the resort’s panoramic view more than makes up for that.
“On a clear day, you can see all the way down to Sea Colony [to the North in Bethany Beach] or all the way to the end of Ocean City,” Schaub.
Besides the extensive dining room, there is a bar area with a lounge and pool tables. Behind the lounge is a banquet hall.
Schaub has ongoing plans to enhance the restaurant starting with the next phase of cosmetic repairs to the banquet hall. In the next two to three years, Schaub wants to take advantage of the view and transform an existing outdoor space into an outdoor deck area. He also hopes to continue adding Peaky locations near and perhaps far.
Schaub added he can’t help but be grateful for his former employers, from Al Jordan to the Hanna family.
“They allowed me to learn, just let me into their business, and taught me everything I needed to know so I am grateful for that,” he said.
Peaky’s Rooftop Restaurant & Bar is open daily for breakfast, lunch and dinner. For more information or to view the menu, visit www.fenwickinn.com or visit Peaky’s Rooftop Restaurant & Bar Facebook page.