TidePoole’s Restaurant Manages a Successful First Year Despite the Pandemic

This year there has been a lot of buzz around the new restaurant TidePoole’s in Newport Beach. Some nights it would seem like it couldn’t possibly get busier, but the phone kept ringing and people kept on showing up to get a taste. Located right on Pacific Coast Highway outside of Newport Shores, the restaurant is located in a highly visible spot on one of the busiest streets in the world. The restaurant opened just over a year ago, and it’s been one crazy ride for the owner, Troy Poole. 

Poole invests all his time in the restaurant; he is always there with a big smile to invite all the customers in. When he started there were ups and downs, but Poole stuck with it — never in a bad mood and always living the dream, as he always says. 

Poole’s mother, Kelly, said her son had always wanted to open a restaurant. Poole was only 24 when he opened TidePoole’s, but he managed to learn a lot of things he might otherwise have been lacking. He was surprised to learn that there are taxes that come with owning a business that he didn’t learn about in school; he also learned that the little things like napkins and paper towels really add up if you aren’t aware of what you are doing. 

“Starting a business and owning a business yourself comes with a lot of challenges,” said Vinny Giovenelli, a former employee and personal friend of Poole. “It takes a lot of hard work.”

Tidepoole’s attracts many different types of people: locals who go there every day, but also newcomers who are trying it out. Many wonder what is the secret recipe to success that TidePoole’s uses to attract customers; Poole believes it is the warm and welcoming front staff who bring the customers in and the head chef, Delfino Garcia Lopez, who keeps them coming back for more of the food that has earned them 5 stars on Yelp and 4.9 on Google.

Poole himself may contribute to the inviting atmosphere too.

He was a “smiley head and always attracted little kids and older people and was very friendly,” Kelly Poole said.

Owning a business is challenging under normal circumstances, but when the pandemic hit it brought a whole new range of obstacles and challenges. Like many other restaurants, the biggest change has come when the worst months of the pandemic forced a shutdown of indoor dining. Poole has taken these challenges head-on, however, and managed to avoid laying off any of his employees.

“We’re lucky to be open and operating smoothly,” Poole said. “The main challenge was adjusting to the rules and regulations.”

After the pandemic passes, Poole’s main goal is to expand the restaurant and make another location. However, he knows he needs to help himself too; he wants to make sure he does what’s best for his mental health. Kelly Poole agrees; in the future, she said, what she wants the most is for her son to be where he is happiest.