Long-planned expansion is finally becoming a reality at Pizza Man in Farmington
After three years of talking, planning and dreaming, Ed Endres finally has some tangible evidence of his effort to bring another sit-down restaurant to downtown Farmington.
Endres, who has owned Farmington's Pizza Man for the past 10 years, broke ground with business partner Phylicia Schindler last week on an expansion that will add seating for 42 inside and room for another 20 on a patio behind the Third Street building.
The change, which will include an expanded menu that has been in place for the last three months, has been a long time coming. Endres started planning the addition three years ago, after frequent visits from customers who expected him to have a place to sit. He got a permit from the city in 2010, and he might have gotten the project off of the ground last year if the state government hadn't shut down. That delayed things enough he didn't think he'd be able to finish in time for winter.
Now, though, Endres and Schindler are full speed ahead. Work on the addition started April 16, and they hope to be open in time for Dew Days in June.
They believe the time is right for the project. Construction companies are looking for work, which means prices for the project have been good. And the new menu, which includes broasted chicken, burgers, sandwiches and wraps, has been popular with delivery customers.
"I think it's perfect timing for us for pricing," Endres said. "We're excited to still be located downtown Farmington instead of moving."
The restaurant's kitchen has been stocked with new equipment, including a grill, and there is a new, full-time cook to handle orders from the expanded menu.
Schindler estimated they go through about 200 pounds of chicken a week.
For the pair, it's exciting to see everything come together. Endres said people are already calling to ask about holding birthday parties and beer bashes in the expanded restaurant.
Once the expansion is finished, Pizza Man will have a new stone-and-siding exterior and a homey interior. The paver patio in the back will be fenced in for privacy and will feature a fireplace. There will be a small bar that has already got people's attention.
"They want to be the first people in the bar," Schindler said.
In addition to the expanded menu there will be a lunch buffet from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.
Getting everything done means a few months of inconvenience. Space inside the restaurant is tight while work is going on. But Schindler and Endres both believe the end result will be worth the effort.
After three years, things are finally moving from plan to reality.
"We're just looking forward to getting this off the ground and having this dream finally fulfilled," Endres said.