Opened in August of 2010, Persimmons is a locally-owned waterfront restaurant located on the shores of the Neuse River in New Bern, NC. We feature an elegant yet casual atmosphere and three distinct dining venues: our downstairs great room, our private upstairs dining room, and our picturesque outdoor waterfront dining area. Persimmons focuses on modern cuisine made from locally-sourced ingredients by our award-winning chef and hosting a variety of special events with waterfront dining, fresh food, and the friendliest service around.
In addition to using local, sustainable ingredients in our food, we also designed our building with sustainability in mind. Our heating and air conditioning is done with an efficient geothermal system, our lighting fixtures are energy efficient, we installed waterless urinals low-flow bathroom fixtures, and we also maintain a recycling program. In fact, much of our restaurant building, including our tables and hostess stand, is made of recycled or reclaimed materials. Our goal is to be as responsible as possible and make a positive impact on our community around us.
The most-asked question here at Persimmons is “what is the origin of our name?” When our building was originally constructed, we dredged the adjacent marina and found several submerged logs that likely date back to a nineteenth-century lumber mill and turpentine distillery which used to be on the site. One of the logs that was found was a persimmon tree. We took the persimmon log down the street to Bill Nelson of Precision Molding, who milled the wood, which was used to create what is now our host stand found at the entrance of the restaurant. Persimmon trees are found in North America and Asia and are one of the only fruits native to Eastern North Carolina. The Roman name for persimmon means “fruit of the Gods.” We also found an enormous log of liquid amber, also known as red gum, which Bill Nelson fashioned into all of our table tops in the restaurant.
Persimmons Waterfront Restaurant in New Bern, NC is a beautiful, elegant, yet casual environment where you can enjoy unique, creative, and delicious cuisine while taking in the waterfront views of the Neuse River. We proudly use the freshest, highest-quality local ingredients, and our service is warm and exceptional.
Simple, delicious food made from scratch using local ingredients isn’t a trend for Chef Antonio Campolio, it’s a way of life. Chef Campolio was first exposed to the culinary world in the kitchen of his family’s restaurant in West Virginia. “Simple food using local ingredients has become really trendy lately. I grew up that way because that’s all we had.”
Chef Campolio is excited to bring that commitment to local, simple and delicious food to Persimmons as its new Executive Chef.
At the age of 12, Chef Campolio began washing dishes at his parents' restaurant. Beginning at age 18, Chef Campolio worked his way through the world famous Greenbrier Hotel’s Culinary Internship Program, learning valuable skills he still uses daily. After his time at the Greenbrier, Chef Campolio continued his career at 700 Drayton in Savannah, Ga. and later at the Broadmoor Hotel in Colorado Springs, Co. Before coming to Persimmons, Chef Campolio was the Executive Chef at the Marcus Whitman Hotel in Walla Walla, Wa., where he lead the restaurant to numerous national accolades including Restaurant of the Year by the Washington Wine Commission. During his time in Washington, Chef Campolio was invited to cook a meal at the James Beard House (named for the legendary American chef) in New York City, one of the highest honors a chef can receive.
Recently becoming a father, Chef Campolio and his wife, Zeljana, were attracted to New Bern as a great place to raise their son. “We visited and fell in love with the town for our family. Then I went to Persimmons and saw an incredible opportunity to really focus on local, sustainable food year-round. It was a perfect fit.”
In his short time at Persimmons, Chef Campolio has already established relationships with local farmers, ranchers and breweries and says the restaurant will feature bi-seasonal menus to highlight the foods that are fresh and at their peak. He wants Persimmons to be a place for “locals and tourists alike -- where they can count on fresh, delicious and local food, whether just getting a beer and appetizer or enjoying lunch or dinner.”
Dean joined the Persimmons team in July 2014 as General Manager. Previously, Dean worked for the largest casino-resort in the United States, where he was charged with overseeing several of the resort’s food and beverage outlets, including an upscale steakhouse, several lounges, and a 24-hour cafe. Dean is an Ohio native and graduated with a Hospitality and Tourism degree from Ohio University in Athens, OH.
Why are we so committed to farm-to-table, locally sourced ingredients? Persimmons Waterfront Restaurant is a locally-owned small business, and we pride ourselves on creating a positive impact on the New Bern community and our local NC farmer community as well. We are committed to using local and sustainable ingredients whenever possible, and we purchase over 80% of our produce, herbs, meats, and seafood from local NC farmers within a 90-mile radius. We believe this makes a huge difference in the product we bring to your table, and we hope you enjoy the quality of the food we serve! Our local ingredients come from Putnam Family Farms, Weeping Radish, Nooherooka Natural, and Parker Farms, among others. A special thanks to our farmers and local suppliers!