photograph by Joshua Curry

EDITOR’S NOTE: This story was published in January 2011. Since its publication, the Old Pier House Restaurant has closed. 

Steve Combs walks into the Old Pier House Restaurant, and by the time he finds a seat and tells everybody good morning, his plate arrives.

“I get the same thing every morning, and I don’t even have to tell them what I want,” he says. That’s dry wheat toast, grits, and an omelet with sweet peppers, onions, and whatever vegetables might be on hand. “Sometimes they surprise me with jalapenos,” says Combs, a broker with Coldwell Banker Sea Coast Realty in Carolina Beach.

Named for the fact that the restaurant used to perch on the pier — until Hurricane Hazel razed it — the Old Pier House has been around longer than anyone can remember. Tom and Debra Humphrey have been running the restaurant for 10 years or so.

“It’s like a little community restaurant,” says their daughter, Margaret Pennstrom. “The police and all the town employees gather here.” The restaurant prides itself on the biscuits made fresh every morning. “And they’re really big,” she says.

Old Pier House Restaurant
101 K Avenue, Kure Beach
(910) 458-8616

Don’t miss:
The “really big” biscuits.