Pie expanding, Artful Bean looking for new home
As soon as the New Year, part of Bethany Beach will have a new look, with Pie restaurant owners Dan Lewis and Robin Rankin and Artful Bean owners Rose O’Hanlan and Kim Warner reaching an agreement last week that would allow Pie to expand, while the Artful Bean looks for a new home.
“I think that it’s good opportunity and it puts us in a good position,” said O’Hanlan of the decision to move the coffeehouse. “We can keep the name, we can keep what we’ve built — we get to keep the business, and now we can pick what we want to do and how we want to do it.”
“We saw the need to expand,” added Lewis of Pie. “Bethany is huge in our lives — we weren’t trying to leave Bethany, so this is what we had to do.”
After setting up shop in August of 2014, Pie has quickly become a Bethany Beach staple, serving up gourmet pizza at its Central Boulevard location.
Next door, O’Hanlan and Lewis took over the Artful Bean in November of 2015, seeing similar success and quickly establishing themselves as part of the community.
But with Pie looking to have some additional seating and offer up its homemade dessert pies, in addition to pizza pies, and the Artful Bean ready to get into roasting their own coffee, the move just made sense.
“We were just very well received in town. We had a line out the door every day all summer long,” said Rankin. “It just made sense for us. This just kind of seems perfect.”
“It’s the perfect time of year to make a transition. I feel like I’m playing for the Eagles right now,” said O’Hanlan with a laugh. “It could turn into a more year-round business, compared to what it is now. There’s some other opportunities we want to explore with coffee roasting — that, to me, is very exciting.”
Just as Lewis and Rankin ultimately decided to stay put and find a solution in Bethany Beach, O’Hanlan and Warner have the same philosophy on the area and are determined to keep their employees, their regulars and their roots.
“It’s the people. We can replicate the structure somewhere else,” said O’Hanlan. “In the summertime, people come in here and they’re jogging or they’re running and they don’t have their money on them, and we say, ‘Oh, just bring it back.’ And they do.”
As for Pie, they’re also aiming to keep their changes to the aesthetic variety only, emphasizing that, while they may be gaining a bigger space, they’ll still keep their signature setting.
Currently having around 30 seats, Lewis and Rankin said they’ll most likely only go up to 50 seats and use the rest of the additional space for a pie display case.
“The fireplace isn’t going anywhere,” said Lewis. “Everything is going to stay the same. We’re going to keep it clean, we’re going to keep it cozy. We just need a little more space to be able to work.”
Renovations and expansion are slated to begin Jan. 1, with Pie aiming to stay open Thursday through Sunday during the project, if possible, and aiming for a grand re-opening in the spring of 2017.
The Artful Bean will hold a moving sale in the coming weeks and will pack up on Dec. 31 while they continue their search for a new space.
Both businesses will be keeping their customers updated on the changes via their Facebook pages.
The Artful Bean can be reached at (302) 541-8160 and Pie at (302) 539-2600.