The owners of Pitch Pizzeria also have a new acquisition: Jams Bar & Grill.
Aaron McKeever and his business partners have purchased the restaurant at 78th and Dodge Streets from its original owner, Mark Hoch, who opened Jams 23 years ago.
“It’s a perfect fit, culturally, with Pitch,” McKeever said. “There are regulars who come into Pitch, and Jams has had regulars for 23 years.”
Longtime Jams chef Jeff Newman will stay on and become a partial owner, and Chris Wray, who has worked at Pitch for the past five years and at Jams for the 10 years before that, will return to Jams as the general manager and another partial owner.
McKeever said the new owners have plans to redecorate. The bar will remain on the restaurant’s west side, but they will take down a wall to open a back room, and the entryway also will be more open. He said they plan to take down the wall-size mural, though the restaurant’s most recognizable feature won’t be forgotten.
“I think we are going to get a picture of it and put it in Jams somewhere,” McKeever said. “We still want to have a small piece of it in there somewhere.”
He said the new owners are working with Anderson Interiors and Alley Poyner Architecture to create a new look, which he describes as “cool and classy.” The restaurant’s logo will also get a makeover, but the name itself will remain the same.
“You only get one shot to do this right,” McKeever said.
The menu will stay focused on American grill food, though McKeever said he wants to give Newman the leeway to update the menu.
Jams will close for two weeks for renovation around the end of October, McKeever said. He said he wants to have the restaurant open with its new look and menu in time for the holidays.