Hot Shots Bar & Grill now openWORTHINGTON — From the hickory wood in the brand new bar to the large, flat-screen TVs on the wall, the managers at Hot Shots Bar & Grill are keeping it local.
By: Laura Grevas, Worthington Daily Globe
WORTHINGTON — From the hickory wood in the brand new bar to the large, flat-screen TVs on the wall, the managers at Hot Shots Bar & Grill are keeping it local.
And that’s just the way they want it.
In fact, manager Mike Peil said his assistant managers — local men Brad Bohn, Arond Peil and Josh Krommendyk — insisted on it.
“Everything here is being done by local contractors,” Mike Peil said. “We have to give credit because it’s all people in this town that are making this happen.”
Transforming the former Stephanie’s Restaurant and Lounge in the Travelodge into Worthington’s newest hangout has been a whirlwind adventure for the entrepreneurs, one that just began this summer.
It was then that Mike, the owner of AJ Tax and Accounting, met with his client Sonny Patel, who owns the Travelodge.
“He approached us about what he should do with this part of this facility,” Mike recalled. “My wife and I sat down with him and said … ‘Let me have an opportunity to hire me as your manager and let me bring in three people who I know are looking for opportunities in this community.’”
Patel is retaining ownership of the facility while Mike serves as manager, teaching the others the restaurant, bar and banquet business. And, he added, providing a friendly place for the community.
“The subtitle of our bar is ‘A Place to Meet Friends,’” he said. “I just want people to leave their anxiety at the door.”
“It’s definitely a casual, family-friendly bar, somewhere you can have a conversation,” added Bohn, one of the three minds behind the project.
“These guys came up with the idea,” Mike said. “(They said) ‘Let’s remodel it, let’s bring a new flavor to town.’ Hot Shots was their idea.”
The bar is now open, offering a full line of drinks and unique munchies like sweet corn nuggets and fried pickles. The unofficial opening on Nov. 6 drew a large crowd, filling the booths and tables that had been transplanted from the restaurant section.
The bar features six big-screen TVs mounted on macaroni-and-cheese-colored walls, while black padded barstools line a smooth high-top bar — loved by Krommendyk for the efficiency with which the longtime bartender can slide drinks to patrons.
In phase two of the project, the restaurant portion of the facility will be remodeled to match the bar, but the restaurant is currently open, with chef Mike Reck ruling the kitchen.
“He comes up with nightly dinner specials that change every night,” Krommendyk said. “Our signature dishes are going to be our homemade pizza and broasted chicken. We feel the community could use an establishment that offers that style of menu. Along with that, we’re going to have anything from steak dinners to burger baskets.”
And though the business is still a work in progress, bookings are now available for special events, parties, receptions and meetings. Hot Shots also offers catering.
Mike said he hopes the new business will complement the town’s other bar and dining options.
“We’re here to enhance it, not to take away from anybody. The more people come in to town, it’s better for all of us,” he said.
“We’ve gotten a 100 percent face lift,” Krommendyk said. “Everything in there is going to be brand new from top to bottom. Anytime that there’s a special event on TV or games of any sort, it’s going to be a place for people to come relax and enjoy.”
The Hot Shots dining room is open from 5:30 to 9:30 p.m. daily. The bar is open from 3 to 11 p.m. Monday through Thursday, 3 p.m. to 1 a.m. Friday, 11 a.m. to 1 a.m. Saturday and 11 a.m. to 10 p.m. Sunday. Phone 372-2991.