EDMORE — Two brothers have been looking to get into the restaurant business for several years.
Jason Wieber, 34, and Justin Wieber, 29, finally found their calling in a century-old bar and restaurant in northeast Montcalm County.
The Wiebers are in the process of purchasing The Phenix at 413 E. Main St. in Edmore from Travis Jensen.
Jensen has owned the Phenix for about six years. He purchased the Brickyard bar and restaurant in Stanton in 2010. He did not return messages seeking comment for this story.
The Wiebers, who are originally from St. Johns, are managing the Phenix while the ownership details are finalized this month. The liquor license transfer will likely take several more months.
Jason Wieber is a deputy with the Mecosta County Sheriff’s Office while Justin Wieber is an accountant in Lansing. The brothers looked at several restaurants over the past few years before getting into serious talks with Jensen about purchasing the Phenix last year.
“This restaurant is by far the best one we looked at,” Jason Wieber said. “It just happened to be the right place at the right time.”
The Phenix is comprised of a restaurant, bar and pizzaria. Daily specials include subs and grinders, as well as pizza, which can be ordered in the restaurant from the pizzaria next door.
“I think we have some really good food,” Jason Wieber said. “I think that’s what brings a lot of people in. Our cooks are good at changing things up. We have a brand new pretzel burger that’s really good.”
The brothers haven’t made any drastic changes to the business, choosing to keep the current staff employed.
“I think they all work well together and all the customers seem to like them,” said Jason Wieber of the staff. “It’s really a pretty well-run place. We have a good manager, Rachel Parks, she does a good job for us.”
The brothers are working on bringing in live bands and karaoke events to the bar on weekends, as well as starting a pool tournament during the week. Golf simulators in the upstairs of the century-old building continue to prove a popular winter attraction.
The brothers have worked well together so far. Being an accountant, Justin naturally focuses on the financial aspects of the business, while Jason runs the day-to-day operations in the bar and restaurant.
The Phenix will host its third annual Big Buck Night this Saturday, sponsored by Goldstar Outdoors in Edmore. The event begins at 5 p.m. with happy hour, followed by an all-you-can-eat meat buffet at 6:30 p.m. Prizes will be awarded after dinner for those who harvested the biggest buck in Gratiot, Ionia, Isabella, Kent, Mecosta and Montcalm counties. All entrants must bring their buck racks with them.
Cost for the event is $35 per person and the event is limited to 100 people.
“There’s still seats available for anybody who wants to come,” Jason Weiber said.
Call The Phenix at (989) 427-3889 for more information.