Main Street will soon be the home of two more downtown dining establishments.
The proprietors of Reifschneider’s Grill and Grape in Freeburg and Columbia are planning a third metro-east locale in the former Apex Building, a 5,500-square-foot space at 100 E. Main St. in Collinsville, as well another restaurant and bar a few doors down at 118 E. Main St. The latter was the long-time home of the Fifth Quarter bar, which was sold to the Reifschneiders last week and will be renamed D. Boozer’s Food and Fire.
Both sites are under renovation. By the time D. Boozer’s Food and Fire opens next month, the new eatery will have a menu of pizza, burgers, sandwiches, salads, appetizers and a bar featuring a wide selection of bourbon. The third Reifschneider’s Grill and Grape is anticipated to open in Collinsville by October and will include a menu of oven-cooked pizza, pasta, steak and seafood, wine and more.
Owner Dan Reifschneider said the city had pursued his business and impressed him when he participated in the city’s annual Italian Fest last September. He said the community’s reception encouraged him to investigate the expansion.
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“It worked well, and it seemed like a good match,” Reifschneider said. “We had a lot of support from the city. They liked what we did, and they promoted us as well.”
Reifschneider would not disclose the investment his business is making in downtown Collinsville, but city economic development coordinator Leah Joyce said the impact will be substantial for the city’s economy.
“We are very excited about it,” Joyce said. “It’s a very exciting development for us because of the very large-scale investment, and it is a very large property on Main Street. It is a very significant aesthetic improvement.”
The former Apex Building has remained vacant and in disrepair over the past few years. Five years ago, a plan was put in place to renovate the two-story building and redevelop the property. The job is being undertaken by Main Street Development, and Joyce said the redevelopment will include revamping the second-floor lofts that should attract residential tenants.
“Main Street Development will own and operate the lofts on the second floor,” she said. “I have seen their work in other communities, and they are really gorgeous. It will be, by far, the nicest second-story rentals we will have.”
Reifschneider anticipates the two new establishments will bring 85 new full- and part-time jobs to downtown Collinsville. His restaurants in Columbia, which opened five years ago, and in Freeburg, which opened two years ago, employ 90 total employees.
“I just hope to bring good food in a good environment,” he said. “We have very good people here who seem to be really interested in what we’re doing.”
Joyce is looking forward to the potential reaction from the city’s business sector.
“Every new business you get and every business that gets redeveloped or gets a facelift, you see others follow and re-invest in their property,” Joyce said. “You see other developers bring new businesses. Each project acts as a catalyst for another one.”
Although he has yet to open for business in Collinsville, apparently some cannot wait. Reifschneider said some have been calling to reserve a table.
“People are already calling and trying to get reservations already,” he said.
Contact reporter Will Buss at firstname.lastname@example.org or 618-239-2526.