Bay Street Ale House kicking patrons upstairs

The idea has been in the back of Todd Waterman’s head for as long as he as owned the Bay Street Ale House, located at 807 Bay Street in downtown Port Orchard.

And after 10 years and a little remolding, Waterman’s Tree House, located upstairs from the Ale House is now a go.

“It’s always been in the back of mind, always,” Waterman said. “It’s always been considered the final phase.”

That phase includes a little more than just a new name.

The upstairs portion of the Ale House has, for the last few years, been home to a pool table and a small seating area with its own bar with the attraction being the out-door deck and the ability to order cocktails.

But Waterman, who opened the Ale House over ten years ago, has added a full-blown, albeit small, kitchen upstairs and for the last two months has been serving a different kind of fare than the kitchen downstairs.

Waterman said the success of the lower floor of the Ale House, known for its unique pizza and sandwiches that are served and the rotating Northwest craft beers that flow from its many taps, funded his upstairs project.

The Tree House will now offer a small menu with a large varsity of foods, prepared in the new kitchen that Waterman slowly put in over the last few months.

His new toy will offer customers a larger choice than standard bar food and he’s hoping to attract not only his usual crowd a little more often, but a new clientele as well.

And with a new menu that includes steak, seafood, burgers and a rotating pasta-of-the-day, Waterman is hoping to cash in on the many diverse tastes of his customer base.

“We’ve kind of got a pretty good corner on pizza, everybody knows we’ve got the best pizza around,” Waterman said. “Everyone knows we’ve got the best pizza and sandwiches, at least in town and for sure the best micro beer selection in town. We like to think the best pizza in the county but that’s for each person to decide.

“What I’m hoping is that the people that already come here for the pizza and good beer once a week or whatever but then go somewhere else for a cocktail or a steak, we can keep them here,” Waterman said. “We’ll have both places in one so hopefully they will come in twice a week instead of just once.”

Waterman said his customers have always been encouraged to move up and down stairs with both their food and drink choices and that will not change.

“I’m just trying to maximize the potential that we have,” Waterman said. “We’d like to give the consumer something (than the regular fare). We want them to have a place to get a quality beer, quality food that’s reasonably priced but in a nice, casual kicked-back atmosphere. It’s not too stuffy but it’s not too slick either.”

The Bay Street Ale House is open Tuesday to Thursday, 3 p.m. until 11 p.m., noon until midnight on Saturdays and 1 p.m. until midnight on Sundays.

The Tree House will operate Wednesdays, Thursdays and Sundays 4 p.m. until 11 p.m. and Friday and Saturday 4 p.m. until midnight.

Food service in the Tree House will start after 5 p.m. with the kitchen closing at 10 p.m.

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