11 months, 2 weeks ago by Bob Gough
Popular Quincy eatery slated to re-open in June
The earth is moving at 12th and Koch’s Lane.
No, it’s not a sign of the pending end of the world on Friday (according to the Mayan’s), but it’s a sign that Sprout’s Inn will soon be back in business.
Owner Jenny McClean Wiemelt said she has been working with the City of Quincy to get the proper permits to rebuild the popular northside restaurant and crews began digging a foundation for the new building on Monday.
Sprout’s will be set farther back from North 12th Street than the original location, which was destroyed by fire last June. Wiemelt said if the weather cooperates and everything falls in place, the new Sprout’s should be open for business in June.
The new restaurant will be 7,200 square feet with a full basement, which the old one did not have. She said the basement will be used to further enhance their catering business.
Instead of having several multiple meeting or party rooms (the previous incarnation had several add-ons) there will be one large room that can be utilized or divided into two or three smaller rooms.
The bar will be more separated from the main dining area. Weimelt said the congestion with the old bar and the people entering the dining room used to “bother” her.
Wiemelt set of a social media frenzy on Monday when she posted pictures from the earthwork being done on Facebook. The old building site was being scraped off while the foundation for the new building was being dug.
Wiemelt said she has been inundated with questions about Sprout’s. Regarding rumors that she wasn’t going to rebuild, she was having problems with the City of Quincy, or she had “spent the insurance money”, she laughed.
“It’s Quincy…people are always going to talk,” she said. “You can’t build something new in a day. It takes time. People are telling me how fast that new steakhouse is going up (Texas Roadhouse at 52nd and Broadway) and I tell them that is a chain (restaurant). It’s a pre-fab building. You build a custom house and it takes time. We have our city permits and they were good to work with. We’re building something from the ground up. We’re building something that, hopefully, will last until the fourth or fifth generation.”
Wiemelt’s grandparents Cecil “Sprout” and Evelyn McClean opened the popular eatery on Broadway in 1940 before moving it to North 12th Street in 1948. Her father, Pat McClean, operated it with Wiemelt until his death in January. Her uncles, Rod and Jeff McClean, operate Kelly’s, Tower Pizza and Mexican, Gem City Pizzeria and The Abbey.
Wiemelt said she felt for the 72 full and part-time employees Sprout’s had at the time of the fire, but many of them will be back for next year's re-opening.