Restaurants Hope to Cash In on Peterson Media
With the trial starting Tuesday, eateries near the downtown Will County Courthouse are promising quick lunches and discounts to lure in reporters and camera people.
On his day off last week, Andy Sleezer headed over to the Will County Courthouse. He was not on hand to observe the circus that is Drew Peterson trial. Rather, he was on hand to let the others who were in town for the trial know where they could get a fast meal at lunch.
Sleezer is the head chef at The Department.
"We created an express lunch menu," he said. "As soon as you order your food, we can get it out in less than 15 minutes."
In addition to an express lunch, The Department is offering a 15 percent discount to anyone who presents their media credentials.
The Department is not alone in trying to cater to the TV and print crowd.
Kathy Trizna, co-owner of Chicago Street Bar and Grill, said the Will County Center for Economic Development asked downtown restaurants to extend a discount to members of the media. Chicago Street, Thayer's 158 North and McBrody's are all offering a 10 percent discount.
"Our entire menu is set up for speed lunches," McBrody's owner Jim O’Connell said.
With the exception of the stuffed burger, which can take up to 20 minutes, food comes to the table quickly, he said.
"Everything else is built for lunch so that there is not a wait," he said.
In addition to fast service, O'Connell said he's stocked up on bottled water and cans of soda after some media members came in requesting them during jury selection last week.
McBrody's opens for lunch at 11 a.m., but said they would be flexible.
"If someone needs to get in earlier, tell them to bang on the door and we’ll seat them," O'Connell said.