By Josh Davis, Associate Editor
(March 14, 2019) Popular Ocean Pines pizzeria DeNovo’s Trattoria is opening a second location in Berlin, called “Pop’s Kitchen.”
Owners Bob and Kelli Beck last Wednesday received approval from the Berlin Historic District Commission for new signs for the restaurant on 15 Gay Street.
According to Bob Beck, “the focus would be on pizza, homemade soup, sandwiches and limited entrees and some salads, some of the staple food items” of DeNovo’s.
He said the restaurant would offer “quick-serve” food mainly for takeout, with only limited seating inside.
The commission approved two items for the new eatery: a 36-by-60-inch aluminum and wooden sign to be hung over the second story of the storefront, and a 42-by-34-inch wooden sign that will be installed under the front awning. Plak That, in West Ocean City, will make both signs.
Commission member Laura Stearns said the larger sign would help draw customers off of Main Street.
“You’re going to need it going out like that, so people can see you,” she said. “I like the style of it. I think it goes nicely with the building.”
Commission member Mary Moore added, “I’m very excited you’re coming” to Berlin.
“I come there [in Ocean Pines] a lot,” she said. “I’m a carryout person with your wonderful soups and chicken salads. And it’s a nice niche, because there isn’t something that fills that void [in Berlin].”
Only commission member Robert Poli thought the signs were inconsistent with others in the district.
“The other stores that have their locations off Main Street usually have either their signs on sandwich boards or their signs on Main Street. My personal view is this doesn’t conform with our views of how our historic district should look,” he said.
Chairwoman Carol Rose disagreed.
“Everybody else thinks it’s OK,” she said. “To me, this is much, much better [than a sandwich board].”
Commission members voted 5-1 to approve the signs, with only Poli opposed.
He did have one final question.
“Do you make your own pizza dough?” Poli asked.
“Yes, sir,” Bob Beck said.
“Perfect,” Poli said. “Just because I don’t like where the sign’s going to be [doesn’t mean he won’t be] coming there for the pizza.”
Economic and Community Development Director Ivy Wells also attended the meeting.
“I’m really pleased that everyone here will be able to get a nice, beautiful slice of pizza in the future,” she said.
Wells also announced Toy Town Antiques would return to Berlin with a new, satellite location on 8 Pitts Street, which was formerly Walt’s Train Shop.
She said the owners, Richard and Debbie Seaton, would appear before the commission soon.
“They will probably be on the docket for next month with their sign, which will be the exact same sign they took from here when they left two years ago,” Wells said.