Business Spotlights

Business Profile: Gleason’s, Peekskill

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If you guessed that Gleason’s restaurant, which recently opened in Peekskill, was named after “The Great One,” you would be correct.

Peekskill resident John Sharp, who co-owns the eatery with several partners, including Tim Reinke of Beacon, said last week the name of the establishment was in tribute of actor Jackie Gleason.

A photo of Gleason in his Academy Award nominated portrayal of Minnesota Fats in “The Hustler” adorns the men’s room of the restaurant.

Gleason owned a home in Peekskill for a short time in the 1950s, which is still in existence at the end of Washington Avenue, Sharp noted. “He was a big UFO enthusiast and he built a house in the shape of a UFO,” Sharp said. “He called it the mother ship.”

“We like our Peekskill history, which is vast,” Sharp added.

Gleason’s, which opened three months ago, is not the first Peekskill restaurant co-owned by Sharp and Reinke. They have owned the Birdsall House on Main Street for the past eight years. “We had great success there and we just wanted to another venue in town,” Sharp said.

Gleason’s specialties included pastas, salads and flatbread pizzas. “A flatbread is a thinner pizza,” Sharp explained. The sourdough crust made with beer imported from Belgium, “which gives it a real nice flavor, a strong flavor with a little bit of sweetness that is really savory too. Flatbread is thin, it comes out more like a cracker,” Sharp said.

March Walker is the chef and he comes up with meal specials, Sharp said.

Serving flatbread pizzas ties in with Gleason’s bar, which features a variety of beers and “an extensive wine list,” Sharp said, adding, “We’re very into our cocktails.” Gleason’s offers a wide variety of cocktails, with the regular creation of special cocktails. Every Friday between 9 and 10 p.m., “We do a toast to Jackie Gleason,” he said. “And then that kicks off the special cocktail for the week. We give everybody little tasters to everybody at the bar.”

The restaurant business has been in Sharp’s blood since he began working in the industry at the age of 15. “I just enjoy it. It’s what I know,” he said. “I enjoy owning restaurants and creating them, especially. We’re very hands-on.” Sharp said he and his partners installed new light fixtures in the building and two windows from a 175-year-old church that was dismantled at the bar.

On November 30, a “Moustache Party” will be held to benefit, Movember, which raises funds and awareness of men’s health issues, including prostate and colon cancer. Men who take part in the fundraising project grow a moustache throughout November and shave it off on the final day of the month. Ten percent of the proceeds from the party will go to Movember.

Another event planned in the near future is a traditional Christmas Eve dinner which will include the serving of seven fish courses, which is not common among local restaurants, Sharp said.

Gleason’s kitchen is open from noon to 10 p.m. Monday through Wednesday; from noon to midnight on Thursday through Saturday and from noon to 8 p.m. on Sunday. The bar is open to at least midnight every day, except Sunday, when it closes at 8 p.m.

Gleason’s is located at 911 South Street. For more information, call (914) 402-1950 or go to

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