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The Green Well evolution: Gastropub's Rockford debut is beginning of possible regional expansion



Since opening at 924 Cherry St. SE in 2007, Essence Restaurant Group’s all-American gastropub, The Green Well, has become a staple in the East Hills community. Hoping that same balanced growth can evolve in more communities outside of Grand Rapids, ERG recently announced plans to open a second Green Well in the Rockford Promenade Building.
 
The Grand Rapids-based Honor Construction is handling renovations on the building that previously housed Reds on the River  at 8 East Bridge St. in downtown Rockford, with scheduled completion and opening for the new Green Well slated for summer 2017.
 
With enough indoor space to seat 160 people and additional outdoor patio seating for 60, The Green Well Rockford will start with the same concept as the popular East Hills original, but plans to add some fresh, local flair to the restaurant as it becomes better acquainted with the surrounding Rockford community.
 
Building owner Daniel Trierweiler of DJT Properties, LLC says he sees similarities between the growing Rockford downtown and the East Hills community, where The Green Well has been met with success for the past decade, namely an all-around growth in population and business, coupled with residents’ focus on local retail and dining options.
 
“Since the space went vacant last summer, I have been determined to find the best next tenant for this beautiful setting,” says Trierweiler, giving credit to Ben Muller Realty Company for helping him find Restaurant Essence Group, whose Victoria Mitchell assisted in securing The Green Well Rockford to a 10-year lease on the space.
 
“Essence is all about local, from sourcing local ingredients to committing to supporting local communities, so Ben Muller Realty did a fine job in securing Essence,” he says.
 
The renovated space will also include two additional retail spaces on either side of the new Green Well Rockford restaurant, with hopes to draw in more interest from upscale local retailers for potential tenancy.
 
With plans to hire 35 to 40 new employees to operate the new facility, Essence Restaurant Group Managing Partner, James Berg, says this second location is just the start for The Green Well pub brand, with ERG leaders beginning to think about the possibility of planting additional locations across the region.
 
“Our Rockford location will allow the start of future growth for The Green Well brand without diluting what we have created on Cherry Street in Grand Rapids," Berg says.

For more information on The Green Well or any of Essence Restaurant Group’s other eateries, visit www.essencerestaurants.com.
 
Written by Anya Zentmeyer, Development News Editor
Images courtesy of Essence Restaurant Grou
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