SOLON– Bringing back a touch of nostalgia with contemporary amenities, The Brass Fountain, is sure to be a welcomed addition to Solon’s downtown. According to operating owner Nick Craig, “The inspiration was the soda fountain and to offer a unique place that’s not just another burger joint.”
Craig says his entire career has been as a restauranteur and he has worked in the industry since high school, and while attending the University of Iowa. He currently owns the successful Brix Cheese Shop and Wine Bar, in Iowa City.
Nostalgia is popularAfter scouting several locations before bringing his idea to fruition in Solon, Craig said, “It was the right idea with the right place and it is a very good fit.”
The Brass Fountain is located at 122 E. Main Street.
“It’s not reinventing the wheel it’s rolling it the right way.”
The building, renovated inside and out, features a 115-year-old fountain back bar, old-time brass stools and a brass foot bar rail, reminiscent of old-time lunch counters and soda fountains. In addition, there are plenty of tables and booths throughout the restaurant.
Craig said he and his business partners are bringing a sense of nostalgia back to Main Street, because people are looking for a place offering a small town feel.
“A lot of what was old, is new again,” he explained. “Nostalgia is popular.”
The centerpiece of the restaurant is the 115-year-old soda fountain back bar, preserved and updated to provide customers with classic hand-pulled sodas from scratch. Craig added he spent time studying the history of soda fountains and gave him a perspective on the popularity and heyday of soda fountain culture.
He explains the rise and fall of soda fountains coincides with the decline of small-town America and Main Street life.
“The soda fountain culture … isn’t easy to define,” he said. “It’s a place where everyone is welcome, a sort of community center. We want to create that atmosphere, taste-wise again.”
The Brass Fountain also features a full lunch and dinner menu offering classic American fare.
“We’re in an old building, on an old Main Street, offering contemporary nostalgia.”
Although an opening date is not set, Craig said the new restaurant will be open within weeks.