August opening set for JL Beers bar and grill in Grand Forks
A fall opening is planned for a future JL Beers grill and bar on South Columbia Road in Grand Forks. JL Beers, which has locations in Fargo and West Fargo and plans to open in Moorhead later in the fall, offers a variety of hamburgers and cheeseb...
A fall opening is planned for a future JL Beers grill and bar on South Columbia Road in Grand Forks.
JL Beers, which has locations in Fargo and West Fargo and plans to open in Moorhead later in the fall, offers a variety of hamburgers and cheeseburgers with optional toppings, dips and an extensive selection of beers.
Construction currently is underway on a new building that will house the eatery at 2531 S. Columbia Road just south of Batteries Plus near Columbia Mall. Lance Thorson, a partner in the chain, said plans call for the Grand Forks location to open in early August.
JL Beers is the latest in a line of burger joints with Fargo locations to open in Grand Forks, including national chain Five Guys Burgers and Fries and Big D's Bar & Grill.
"Grand Forks is a great city, a growing city," Thorson said. "We thought this would be a great fit for the people up there. There are a lot of great restaurants up there, but we will fill a niche."
JL Beers will offer about 40 different beers on tap, most from different craft breweries across the country, as well as 50-60 bottled beer varieties. Sample glasses are available to customers to help them decide what to order.
The city council approved a liquor license for JL Beers in February. But Thorson said there is more to the future Grand Forks watering hole than just alcohol.
"We're different than a bar," he said. "We only serve beer. We're really more of a restaurant that serves beer."
Menu items, which range from burgers with names like "The Humpty Dumpty" and "Rajun Cajun," are limited and the only sides are a variety of fresh cut seasoned potato chips and french fries.
The city issued final inspections approvals for the new building last month.
Seating for 47 is planned in the building's 1,735-square-foot main floor, a long narrow strip similar to but larger than JL Beers' downtown Fargo location. An additional 20 seats will be available on an outdoor patio. Four big-screen TVs will also allow customers to watch sports during their visit.
Despite its location on Grand Forks' south end, Thorson said, the building will feature aged brick, steel columns and beams and will have a "downtown feel."
The new restaurant/bar will be open from 11 a.m. to midnight seven days a week.
Thorson said the chain considered other locations in Grand Forks, but the South Columbia site, which features high visibility and adequate parking, was the most attractive.
"South Columbia has high traffic counts and great access," Thorson said. "It's close to shopping on the south side; it's fairly close to UND and it's across the street from the mall. It was one of the few lots available on Columbia."
Thorson said he expects JL Beers to hire 35-40 employees in Grand Forks, a mix of part- and full-time workers. He said the chain will begin hiring soon.
JL Beers plans to open another location in Moorhead this fall after purchasing the old Pizza Hut building.
Thorson also hinted at the possibility of opening a second JL Beers location in Grand Forks in the future if the first one proves to be successful.
Schuster covers business. Reach him at (701) 780-1107; (800) 477-6572, ext. 107; or send e-mail to firstname.lastname@example.org . Follow Schuster on Twitter at @RyanSchuster.