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Palos Hills' Lassak Deli Looks To Expand Offerings

The Polish market might soon offer imported liquors and craft beer if given approval by the City Council.

A popular Palos Hills grocery store may soon be expanding their offerings to include imported liquors.

Konrad Wilk, owner of , 8017 W. 103rd Street, approached the Palos Hills City Council at Thursday's committee meeting to inquire about obtaining a liquor license. He said the deli, which focus on traditional Polish foods, is expanding into the two adjoining store fronts. The store is interested in carrying craft beers and imported liquor.

He presented the council with a mockup of the new layout and said the liquor department will be only a quarter of the store.

“We will continue to focus mostly on our non-liquor related items and foods but believe this could help business,” Wilk said.

Mayor Gerald Bennett said that he was glad to hear the store would focus on specialty liquor and not just packaged alcohol, and congratulated Wilk on the store's expansion.

Ald. Martin Kleefisch (1st Ward), the expansion of liquor licenses in the area, said that he is a shopper at Lassak and thinks the store has done a great seal for the strip mall, but that he would not support the license because he didn't think Palos Hills needs additional liquor stores.

“I think we have enough packaged liquor in this town, so I will not be supporting this,” he said. “We've had t of local stores selling [alcohol] to minors and we increase the possibility of having another incident with each one – I think we have enough to service the needs of adults.”

Just before the end of the meeting Wilk came back up to the podium and said that while he respected Kleefisch's point of view, he thought liquor sales might be necessary to help support the expanded store. He added that it would create some impulse stops by shoppers who might also pick up some sausages or some of the market's other mainstays.

“I'm glad you came back you here and said that because I was going to vote no but now I have changed my mind, I will support you,” said Ald. Mary Ann Schultz (5th Ward).

The six additional aldermen present also chimed in and said they would support the license. Aldermen Ricky Moore and Joe Marrotta , both of the 4th ward, were absent.

“Well, we don't vote at committee meetings,” Bennett said. “But I think you just got your answer.”

The council will vote next week to add a license by amending the liquor ordinance, and two weeks after that will vote whether or not to approve it.

Bennett also announced that the closed Marathon at 111th Street and Southwest Highway will be re-opening under a new name and ownership.

Zachary Brown August 12, 2011 at 04:42 PM
While I am supportive of a grocery store providing alcohol as an option for thier customers ....a quarter of the store seems a bit much. Hopefully the council includes conditions specifically restricting the percentage of the store that can be utilized for liquor sales so as to avoid the future changover to full blown liquor store........ and please tell me that the arent requesting a 3am license.
Concered Citizen August 12, 2011 at 11:54 PM
There is a difference between a low-brow liquor store that caters to those seeking cheap booze and offering alcoholic beverages for those with discerning tastes (fine wines, craft beers, single malt scotch, etc.). If there is a limited number of licenses, it is better to go to the latter than the former. Also, the latter will be less likely to need a 3am license or resort to selling to minors.
Joseph Hillenmeyer August 15, 2011 at 02:23 AM
@Zach, CC. I checked and the store does not have plans to sell past its current hours of operation, which are 9 p.m. during the week, 8 p.m. on Saturday and 5 p.m. Sunday. They are not requesting the class of license that would allow them to do so.

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