About Sam’s

history of sam’s

Since 1983, Sam’s Rialto Grill has been serving up authentic southern recipes that have become famous throughout the Pleasantville Area. We are a family owned and operated business offering a full menu of wholesome, delicious food. From our famous fried chicken and chicken & waffle dishes, to our soups, salads and sides, when you eat at Sam’s Rialto Grill, you will always leave satisfied.

Conveniently located on S. Main St. in Pleasantville, Sam’s Rialto Grill is more than just good food and friendly service. We also offer a full bar with happy hours and specials and our exclusive catering service where we will bring the best of Sam’s Rialto Grill to you. Make your next event even more special with a full range of options from our Southern Style menu.


meet the founder

Samuel “Sam” Hunter of Farmville, Virginia, came to the Atlantic City area as a young man in the 1960’s filled with passion for the food service industry.  Sam along with a couple of friends took jobs as dishwashers in Zaberers in McKee City during the summer season.  Sam worked hard as a dishwasher, but his true goal was to become a chef.  One day as a dishwasher, Sam was sick and unable to work at Zaberers.  Then owner, Charlie Zaberer, was dining in with friends as Sam was out sick.  The owner and the friends were upset their meal did not meet his usual standards, and he asked the staff in the kitchen what happened?  A chef at the time stated they were short, Sam that evening.  Mr. Zaberer was shocked, as Sam was only the dishwasher.  From that point on Sam worked through the ranks at Zaberers to becoming the Head Chef there.

Sam wanting more, ventured to open his own businesses.  One of his first business was the Belport Inn, which was located in the Venice Park section of Atlantic City.  The Belport Inn soon became a hopping nightlife spot in a day when many of the bars and restaurants in Atlantic City were not african-american owned.  Circa 1978, Sam sold the Belport Inn in search of opening a place that catered more towards food.

In 1980 Sam met his wife, Brenda Hunter, and purchased the Rialto Bar & Grill on Main Street in Pleasantville.  Not wanting to takeaway from the history of a business that was decades old, Sam only changed the name to Sam’s Rialto Bar & Grill.

Unfortunately Sam passed away in 2008, but through his family his name continues to live.