by Lynn Meredith
ELBURN—One day last week, the early morning regulars were just finishing their coffee when an official from the Illinois Department of Revenue told Kountry Kettle owner Rudy Hernandez to shut down the restaurant and let no more customers in.
“The guy showed up and said he was going to close us,” Hernandez said. “I said, ‘What are you talking about? Are you crazy?’”
That night was Hernandez’s daughter’s graduation, so he wasn’t able to handle the situation until Friday. However, with paperwork that needed to be signed and approved, the “Kettle” remained closed. The long holiday weekend stalled the paperwork further, not to mention sales of the many weekend breakfasts the restaurant would have served on the holiday.
As of press time, the official green sign remains on the door, barring sales until Hernandez has the final OK from the state. An official must remove the sign before the doors can open.
For now, a larger green sign is posted that says: “Kountry Kettle will open soon. Sorry for the inconvenience.”