Mike Monseur and John Leskovisek, the owners of three central Illinois Godfather’s Pizza franchises, recently purchased the Dew Chilli Parlor from Mark Roberts III, located at 1216 S. Fifth St., in Springfield.
The historic chilli parlor is located just a half-block off Route 66, and has a strong tradition of serving tavern-style chilli. Monseur and Leskovisek cite their desire to share in a longstanding Springfield tradition as the driving force behind the purchase. In a press release that went out on Thursday, Aug. 31, the new owners state, “We are excited to continue the legacy that has been established since 1909.”
Ownership of Dew Chilli Parlor has changed hands multiple times since Fred Crowder first opening the doors to Dew’s flagship location, 607 S. 11th St., on March 30, 1909. In October of 1929, ownership of the parlor was sold to Joe Bockelmann and Nickey McNerny, and one year later, the pair added a secondary location at 720 S. Fifth St.
In 1933 Bockelmann bought out McNerny’s partnership and closed the 11th street location, choosing instead to focus efforts on 720 S. Fifth St., which eventually closed in 1954. In July of 1949, Bockelmann tore the front porch off of his family home, located at 1216 S. Fifth St., to build the new and current location of the parlor. After Bocklemann’s death in 1975, the Dew Chilli Parlor was left to Rita Maurer Patton, his employee of 33 years, where it remained open until 1995.
In 2013, Mark Roberts III, who patronized the parlor as a child, purchased the building located at 1216 S. Fifth St., as well as the original Dew chilli recipe from Dr. Joseph Maurer. After undergoing renovation, the parlor reopened under Roberts’ ownership in April 2014.
Menu offerings at Dew Chilli Parlor include the original Dew recipe chilli along with classic chilli parlor staples such as tamales, hot dogs, grilled cheese, walking tacos, desserts, and more. For more information about Dew Chili Parlor, visit http://dewchilliparlor.com.