MIDDLETOWN, R.I. (WPRI) — After being a staple in the East Bay for nearly a century, Sig’s Place in Middletown will close its doors for the final time this weekend.
The deli and catering business has been serving customers since 1930 and the owners thought they had two more years, but sometimes things change.
“I’m excited and sad at the same time,” co-owner Shawn Margolis said.
Since 2010, Margolis said the shop has been his home away from home. Whether it’s taking orders by phone or the register, he loves making the people he serves happy.
“It’s a great feeling to know that you’re loved and wanted for your food,” he said.
Margolis’ family has been in the business for more than 90 years. It started with his grandfather Sigmund, who became the shop’s namesake.
“He was the biggest part of this legacy,” he said.
In 1930, Sigmund and his wife opened a small store below their Thames Street apartment in Newport and began slicing meat to help families survive the Great Depression. Their sons took over in 1967, first adding the deli, then expanding in 1976 by opening Fifth Ward Liquor down the street.
When running both businesses ran its course, the brothers split the stores and Margolis’ parents took over the deli until their retirement in 2008.
Two years later, Margolis took over the family business, even though he had no culinary training.
“My mother was such a good cook and she taught me how to make so many of these recipes from scratch that it just kind of came naturally to me,” he said.
Margolis said his customers even followed him when he moved the sandwich shop from Newport to Middletown.
“People from the Fifth Ward, or Newport, will come in here and all of a sudden they’ll see a friend or a family member standing here already in line, so it’s great,” Margolis added.
Sig’s Place’s last day serving sandwiches is Saturday. Margolis said he is going to miss his customers the most.
Once the shop is closed, it’s going to reopen as a new deli with a new menu and owner called The Roasted Clove.