Mike Rebitzer got a little misty-eyed when he surveyed the interior of the new Bierstube of LeClaire bar and grill shortly before opening day this spring as the Quad-Cities' newest riverfront restaurant.
In the 2,800-square-foot space overlooking the Mississippi River, woodwork gleams against walls painted in deep red and decorative beer steins occupy places of honor on the bar shelves. The front door with a stained-glass window was reworked from the Moline restaurant.
"This is the first time I've ever done a project like this on my own," he said. "I never would have thought nine years ago that we would have three restaurants. What started as a way for my dad to get out of wearing a suit every day has exploded."
The restaurant at 1001 Canal Shore Drive looks out onto the Mississippi River, which makes a sharp turn to the southwest in its journey through the historic river town. The Rebitzer family also owns the Bierstube Bar and Grills in the Village of East Davenport and East Moline.
Having a location in LeClaire feels like coming home, said Rebitzer, a 1999 graduate of Pleasant Valley High School. He got involved in the family enterprise, initially at East Village location and later as manager of the Moline bar and grill. Most of the Rebitzer family is involved in the business.
Patrons can order a beer and pretzel breakfast and items such as reuben sandwiches, sausage sampler, schnitzel salad, Hawaiian chicken salad and more. The list of beer includes 21 drafts from Germany, Belgium, Czech Republic, Ireland and the United States.
Even though the restaurant has good river views, it doesn't have a dock yet. Its owners would like to have a dock someday for boaters to stop by, but haven't approached the city yet or sought permits for one.
The River Run building also has three retail spaces for an office, a physical therapy center and one spot still available for lease, Ted Rebitzer, a partner in River Run, said. Another building under construction on the middle lot will be occupied by River View Dental Specialists and Quad-City Childcare Development Center.