Blog : Poco's New Heated Deck Stays Warm Through Fall

By Sam | Sep 18, 2014 | in

Though they may crowd the restaurants, sidewalks, and parking lots, tourists bring millions of dollars to Portsmouth’s community. After summer’s tourist season is over, however, there are only a few fleeting weekends for locals to enjoy some of the town’s hallmark features, notably Bow Street’s string of restaurants with outdoor decks. Poco’s Bow Street Cantina is extending harborside dining and drinking on its deck well into “sweater season” with a newly-installed heating system.

Poco’s is now fully equipped with a high-efficiency natural gas furnace, which will heat the entirety of the deck. Poco’s co-owners John Golumb and Marlisa Geroulo expressed their excitement to keep the outdoor seating warm throughout the fall.

“If this weekend is chilly at night, it will be a great opportunity to try out the new heat system,” he said. “It’s going to be very comfortable.”

Brian Russell is Poco’s plumber and heating/cooling contractor. He’s also a frequent patron of Poco’s, so when Golumb wanted a new heater installed, Russell knew exactly what to do.

“I’ve been eating at Poco’s for 20-something years, and I’m really glad to be able to enjoy the outdoor seating longer now,” he said.

Poco’s is known for their sustainability efforts, such as installing decking made from recycled plastic bottles and using reclaimed and recycled wood to build some of its interior fixtures. In regards to nighttime outdoor seating, the new system will operate at over 95% efficiency.

“The biggest reason this is efficient in comparison to other systems is that it’s a condensing furnace with dual heat exchangers. This is more efficient than infrared or a propane lamp,” said Russell.

Russell said that propane lamps operate around 80% efficiency.

“When we used to have propane lamps, most of the time people would either be too hot or too cold, depending on where they sat,” said Golumb.

Additionally, the deck is now evenly cozy, and will be able to stay open every night of the week, weather permitting. As an added bonus, Two Ceres Street, a restaurant by the same owners, will open its doors to the decks, just like summer.

Bartender Jay Geigley appreciates the new system, not only for business, but to keep himself warm as well.

“It’s so much better than the old propane torches we used to have.” “People would either be too hot or too cold. It’s equally warm everywhere now, even behind the bar,” he laughed.

Depending on the weather (the heat system cannot operate in below-freezing temperatures, Golumb is expecting Poco’s deck to be open until mid-November – plenty of time to enjoy a relaxing evening on the Piscataqua.

“I hope this will give the town of Portsmouth the ability to enjoy the great riverside scenery for as long as possible.”