Perry residents will soon have another option for lunch.
Common Wealth Provisions is set to open on Thursday, Feb. 7. The deli-style restaurant will serve a variety of sandwich options.
The deli is located at 1215 2nd St., where Perry Floral and Gifts was previously located. Jeremy Mahler closed on the sale of the building, owned by Bacon Jewelers, in September of 2018.
Bacon Jewelers closed its long-time Perry location next door in June. A March 21, 2018 fire caused the temporary closing of Bacons, Perry Floral and Gifts and Ben’s Five and Dime.
Ben’s reopened in October. Perry Floral and Bacons never reopened. Mahler said Common Wealth Provisions is the first section of the building that they remodeled.
The remodel was time-consuming, he said, as the building had significant smoke damage. Mahler said while the process was long, “this building is so awesome, it’s worth it.”
He has also applied for an economic development loan to redo the front facade of the building. Once that is complete, he said plans are to continue the work upstairs. The upstairs portion includes five apartments, two two-bedrooms, two one-bedrooms and one studio.
Mahler then plans to turn his attention to the former Bacon Jewelers portion of the building.
“That’ll be the cherry on top. I’m really excited about the plans for Bacons,” he said.
For now though, his attention is on Common Wealth Provisions. The business will be open from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Monday through Saturday. Those hours, Mahler added, may expand in the future.
He also plans to fill a case with meat and cheese that customers can purchase, in addition to the regular sandwiches. The business doesn’t currently have a liquor licence and Mahler said future plans are to add beer and wine to the menu.
“When we were doing this space, we kind of wanted to give it a comfortable, cool feel,” he said. “Cool, comfortable, clean. That makes people want to hang out.”
Mahler’s partner in Common Wealth Provisions is Jim Reis, who owns the Des Moines Bacon and Meat Company. When Mahler was looking into what he wanted to do with the building, he said opening a deli with Reis seemed like a natural fit.
“He is a magician when it comes to meat. He’s as gifted with food as anyone I’ve ever known,” Mahler said of Reis.
Mahler also owns The Nineteen14 in Minburn. He plans to continue running the restaurant and pub in Minburn.
“But I wanted to give back a little bit to Perry too because this is where I grew up,” Mahler said.
He has enjoyed seeing new retail businesses open in downtown Perry, along with future restaurants.
“I don’t see it as competition. I see it as the more the merrier,” Mahler said of having multiple restaurants. “You give people a reason to come to this town on any given day and they’ll continue to come.”
He added that the Hotel Pattee, now with Harvey’s, is a great anchor for the town. Perry also boasts venues like La Poste and multiple new and existing retail locations, Mahler said.
He is looking forward to being part of the growth of Perry. Especially, he added, as the “Let’s Connect” project is working to connect the Raccoon River Valley Trail with the High Trestle Trail.
“There’s a cool kind of traction going on in Perry right now, with the bike trail coming in and more and more retail being added down here,” Mahler said. “It’s just a really cool time to be in Perry.”