By Jake Krzeczowski– Behind the new restaurant is a well-known chef who is also a partner at Ivy in Wheaton Michael Vei and Brian Goewey are seasoned veterans in the restaurant business.
Having helped start dozens of eateries across the Midwest and beyond between them, the two thought they had seen it all, until they arrived in Glen Ellyn.
“Glen Ellyn is unlike any other place,” said Vei. “The community here is just unbelievable.”
The partners are the driving force behind the town’s hottest new restaurant, Flour + Wine, located at 433 North Main St.
The eatery offers a menu of neopolitan-style pizza, pasta and a smattering of small plate options that, true to the name pair with an impressive wine selection.
“We knew we could get into a local suburban market where we could provide a niche with our pizzas and such,” said Vei. “We had a site analysis done in Glen Ellyn and it looked like the perfect place for our idea.”
Brian, who is also a partner at Ivy Restaurant in Wheaton knows the area well and saw a chance for a void to be filled.
After little over a month since opening, the two have been more than happy with the reaction they have recieved from the community.
“One of the biggest comments from the customers has been ‘Glen Ellyn needed this,” said Goewey. “It’s really a wonderful market and a great town.”
In the short time since they opened the owners of Flour + Wine have taken steps to get involved in the community they serve as much as possible.
They have done so by joining the Glen Ellyn Downtown Alliance and sponsoring local booster clubs such as those at Glenbard West where they recently signed up, among other organizations.
With the state of the economy it would be understandable to have some bare fingernails around the time of the opening, but Vei and Goewey, relying on past experience had no worries.
“Brian, over his career has opened probably over sixty or so restaurants,” said Vei. “Myself I have probably opened over twenty so we took this with a very specific plan in mind.”
That plan began in March when the two bought the property and in just under 40 days Flour + Wine has evolved into a place with few free tables come dinner-time.
Deriving a name for the restaurant on the other hand was one of the biggest obstacles before the unveiling.
“We were just looking for a name that fit our niche, and one day I woke up and just said Flour + Wine,” said Goewey. “The two of us sat down at a coffee shop one day and I wrote it down and we both knew right away it was perfect.”
Vei and Goewey, self-described “hands-on” managers are rarely seen outside of the kitchen or restaurant these days, and that’s perfectly fine with them.
“We’ve both been around the country doing this and we are just really thrilled to be in Glen Ellyn,” said Goewey. “These people are awesome, the village has been very good to us and this whole thing has been very fun so far.