The Dish restaurant opens at Hwy. 31 and Spring

The Dish, the new restaurant at Highway 31 and Spring Street, is designed to have a meal ready in five minutes. But don’t think of The Dish as serving “fast food,” says co-owner Jim Willkomm.

The Dish, a 6,200-square-foot restaurant, opened Wednesday and is a key piece of Jim and Michael Willkomm’s approximately $8 million development at the southeast corner of Highway 31 and Spring Street. The development also includes a Mobil gas station with store, the Rocket Wash car wash and Dunkin’ Donuts, which Jim Willkomm expected to open Thursday.

The Dish is a considerably larger version of the one the Willkomm brothers opened in Oak Creek. Both are independents from a concept the Willkomms devised themselves.

Jim explained the concept derived from a building he bought in an industrial area of Oak Creek. The brothers wanted to open a place where workers could come, be served a good sandwich and eat — all during a 30-minute lunch break.

The brothers still aim to have each customer’s food ready in five minutes. But Willkomm said, “We don’t call it ‘fast food,’” because that implies lower-quality fare.

The new Dish has a spacious design with a unique flourish. A long part of one wall displays a mural of an Italian scene. Willkomm said they had a photo taken on a street in Italy, chose which elements they wanted to keep, rearranged others, and then a Madison company turned their scene into wallpaper.

The Dish has booth and table seating for 156 people in summer and 122 in winter, with one seating area that’s open to the outdoors but can be closed during chilly weather to become a sunroom.

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