Joe’s Diner has been sold and a new mid-range bar/restaurant will take its place by the end of the year, according to its new buyer.
Clint Gaskins, managing partner of Sea Island Food Group, recently purchased Joe’s Diner, which is located underneath Café Roma in the heart of Cruz Bay. Clint is from Charleston, SC and has been traveling to St. John for the past 10 years. He plans to convert it into what he calls a “coastal casual environment with a hang-out surf bar vibe.”
“As you have heard, we have recently taken over the space and closed the doors for renovations and improvements. Although Joe’s was a fixture in the heart of Cruz Bay for quite some time, we feel that this will be a welcome change to the street,” Clint said. “We have a fairly extensive renovation/improvement planned for the space, to include making the space ADA compliant on the first floor. We will essentially be gutting the space to the concrete walls and updating everything … plumbing, electric, mechanical, facilities, kitchen, etc.”
Clint said he is still in the project’s identity phase, however he did mention how he plans to incorporate some cantina-based items into its menu like baja bowls, ceviche, salsa and tacos.
“It’s going to fill a nice gap in the St. John market for the mid-range bar/restaurant for locals and tourists alike,” Clint said. “Given the size of the space and the limitations, you can image that we will be placing a large emphasis on the bar program. The space will have a seating capacity of 50-60 through a combination of bar and table seating.”
Clint also owns Squeeze Bar and is a managing partner of a small hospitality-based group in Charleston. He hopes to open the new restaurant by Christmas.