An iconic Waterbury restaurant is reopening tomorrow with a new owner.
Drescher’s will reopen its doors after being closed for years.
The new owner, George Tirado Jr., is a former city police officer who’s excited to bring back a place that meant a lot to him, the community, and one very special friend before it closed.
“I look forward to creating new memories here. Being a part of downtown Waterbury, being a part of the revitalization,” Tirado said.
The old Drescher’s restaurant was a downtown Waterbury staple, and its new life is in part to honor another life that touched the Brass City.
"I wish Chris was here to be a part of it. But I know he’s here with us. His picture is up on the top shelf of the bar here," Tirado said.
That picture is of Deputy Chief Christopher Corbett, who spent many Friday nights with Tirado.
"We look forward to somehow, some way memorializing him here in this place," Tirado explained.
When the restaurant opens tomorrow it will mark the culmination of a dream the two men had before Corbett’s passing in 2015. The medical examiner determined his death was a suicide. Corbett had served the city’s police force for almost 20 years.
"We would jokingly say that the day we retire we wanted to buy this place and continue its legacy," Tirado told NBC Connecticut.
Tirado said Drescher’s will have many of the same comforts that made it a place he and Corbett and everyone else wanted to make their way downtown for years ago.
"Keep the original feeling of Drescher’s itself, keep the history that this building has, but still be able to create a new feeling in here."
But for Tirado, it will likely be even more special this time around, knowing it honors his friend.
"Chris wasn’t a man of many words, but he would definitely be smiling. He’d be happy for me and for the city of Waterbury," Tirado said.