From Our Family To Yours
The story of Mr. P’s Bistro is more than a perfectly cooked prime rib or baked Oysters Bienville, it is a story of love and family. When you dine with us at Mr. P’s Bistro, you take part in a family tradition over sixty years in the making.
“Low-country cuisine and seafood are our family’s tradition, passed on from generation to generation,” says Chef Stephen Phipps.
Chef Stephen Phipps, Mr. P’s son and a graduate of Johnston and Wales Culinary School in Charleston, S.C., didn’t start his over 40 years of culinary experience in a classroom but in the kitchen with his own father (Norman Phipps). A tradition he began to pass on to his own son Addison when he was thirteen. Even Mr. P himself got his start in a family kitchen at Faircloth’s Oyster Roast in Wrightsville Beach, N.C. which was owned by his Aunt Gertrude Ellington.
“We can still see those old checkered tablecloths and the smell of fresh calabash dishes coming out of the kitchen,” Chef Steve reminisces.
Over the years, our family has opened and ran more than one restaurant in the Southport area. In the ’70s and ’80s, Mr. P operated The Sand Fiddler in Southport, The Windjammer at Ocean Crest Pier on Oak Island. In the mid-early 90’s Mr. P and his family also operated Mr. P’s Bistro, The Pharmacy, and Mr. P’s Waterway. Chris Smith, General Manager and Mr. P’s son-in-law, joined the family business and began his hospitality career at The Harborside restaurant, located beside the Southport Marina, in 1993. While mentoring under the tutelage of Mr. P, Smith earned his Hospitality Management degree in 2001.
The family’s fondest memories are of when Mr. P worked with his children in the kitchen together to share our family’s tradition with the community. “Mr. P may no longer be with us; however, we work every day in our kitchen and dining room to share not only his love of food but of his family legacy,” says Smith. At some point, every member of the family has put their love into Mr. P’s Bistro, from dishwashing, hosting, bussing, and serving to jumping on the line to help bring Low Country dishes to life.
Over the years, Mr. P’s Bistro has strived to set the standard for fine dining service in the Southport area. Providing high-quality food through Certified Angus Beef, fresh seafood, and local produce and by treating every guest who walks through the door and sits down to dine with us as a member of our own family. “We know that when you dine with us, cherished memories are made, and we don’t take that lightly,” says Smith.
“We are honored and blessed to have been able to serve our customers who have become friends and family over the years,” expresses Mrs. P.
We invite you to come to dine with us, enjoy a delicious low-country cuisine dinner, and become part of our story. We know we don’t plan on going anywhere soon.