Restaurant has sights set on Atlas BBQ building

The Stillery plans to open in recently vacated prominent downtown space
Ozaukee Press Staff

The former Atlas BBQ building in Grafton will not sit empty long. A restaurant called The Stillery was approved to operate in the space by the Plan Commission on Tuesday and is expected to open in August.

The moonshine-themed restaurant was proposed by Peter Kotsakis, who opened the first location of The Stillery in Richfield. The Grafton restaurant at 1304 12th Ave. will be the eatery’s second location.

The Stillery’s Richfield location features a full menu with American eats, a large assortment of cocktails and a long list of whiskeys, ryes and bourbons.

The Stillery in Grafton will largely keep Atlas BBQ’s 5,600-square-feet floor plan the same, with the exception of plans to remodel and reorient the bar area. Signage and decorations around the building will also be changed.

According to village documents, construction is expected to be completed in July.

The hours of operation will be from 11 a.m. to 2:30 a.m. daily and the business will operate in two shifts, each with about 30 employees. The maximum occupancy of the restaurant will be 179 people.

The Plan Commission unanimously approved the operation on March 22 with no oppositions to the proposal.

One condition The Stillery will have to abide by is an arrangement made between the village and Atlas BBQ to store sound equipment used for Paramount Plaza events in the building.

Some community leaders were disappointed when Atlas BBQ closed in December because of its prime location in the village.

Grafton Chamber of Commerce Director Pam King said having a restaurant in such a central point of the downtown filled an important gap and helped make the village a tourist destination.

Both King and Atlas BBQ owner Mike Tsuchihashi had said they expected the former Atlas BBQ space, adjacent to Paramount Plaza, to fill quickly following Atlas’ closure.




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Ozaukee Press

Wisconsin’s largest paid circulation community weekly newspaper. Serving Port Washington, Saukville, Grafton, Fredonia, Belgium, as well as Ozaukee County government. Locally owned and printed in Port Washington, Wisconsin.

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