Nadine Wilf grew up on the beach in Jamaica. She loved her career in restaurants, and as a private chef.
Her new office is her favorite yet. And why not? It’s at Compo Beach.
The Wilton resident is the general manager of Hook’d on the Sound. The concession stand opened last week.
The pandemic posed challenges — including a year-long delay in construction workers and materials.
But Hook’d is here. Early reviews are very favorable. And — with the possible exception of her boss, owner Itai Shoffman — no one is more excited than Wilf.
She shares his vision of Hook’d as “beach life, with a bit of sophistication.” With a full breakfast lunch and dinner menu, smoothies, soft-serve ice cream, “wonderful service” — and more on the way, like a candy bar, retail store featuring local artisans, and plantings outside — she hopes there is something for everyone.
Shoffman grew up in Greenwich, but had Westport friends and spent time at Compo. He operated public spaces professionally, and jumped at the chance to bid on the Westport concession.
“It’s an amazing space,” the owner says. “It deserves something special.” Most concessions — even Tod’s Point, his familiar Greenwich beach — do not have the same large area or level of amenities.
Over the past year, the former Joey’s by the Shore has been completely gutted. There is new paint, new equipment, new tiles on the counter, and a new logo.
Also new: the option to order online (www.hookdonthesound.com — the website will be live soon). A text will be sent when the order is ready. A special line for pickup will help ease crowds.
As with Joey’s, house accounts are available.
Like Joey’s, Hook’d has hired local help. Of the 32 cashiers — including auxiliary operations at Longshore’s golf halfway house (already open) and pool (open by this weekend) — Wilf says that all but 3 are Westporters.
Hours are tentatively 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. weekends, 9 to 7 on weekends. But there were crowds the first Friday, so they kept the doors open. Later hours may be coming.
All employees are masked. Because Shoffman rents a town building, Parks & Recreation signage will soon be posted, recommending masks in the indoor space.
The Parks and Rec staff has been very helpful, he notes. On Saturday, they helped haul tables and umbrellas.
Shoffman and Wilf plan special events — perhaps a barbecue day, or working with the Rotary Club on its annual LobsterFest in September.
Long before then, he hopes, Westporters will be hooked on his new concession stand.
(To see the Hook’d menu, click here.)