July 15 – NEW ALBANY – A downtown New Albany soup and sandwich shop has reopened for the first time since it closed during the pandemic.
Lady Tron Streets of Market and Bank Streets reopened on Thursday after closing in March 2020.
Summer Sieg, owner and chef of Lady Tron, opened the restaurant about five years ago. The menu offers creative varieties of soups and sandwiches.
The small space is filled with retro sci-fi memorabilia and space ranging from “Star Wars” figures to a “Mork & Mindy” lunchbox.
At the start of the pandemic, Lady Tron’s offered take-out food, but it closed at the end of March.
âAt the very beginning it was like it was going to last a few weeks, and after that it was like, no, it was going to be a long thing,â Sieg said. “After that, it was scary with the fact that there were a lot of applications for grants and loans to small businesses.”
She received loans and grants for small businesses that helped her stay afloat during the shutdown. A loan of $ 10,000 from Caesar’s Foundation has been of great help, said Sieg.
“If I hadn’t got these loans and grants, I wouldn’t have been able to reopen,” she said. “I still had to pay the bills.”
Lady Tron’s is a tiny space that only offers counter seating, so it hasn’t been set up for social distancing. She also didn’t think it was worth it financially just to offer take out, Sieg said.
She’s excited to reopen now that things are back to normal and that she and her Lady Tron colleague are vaccinated.
Lady Tron’s is in a pre-fab restaurant built in 1957 by a company called Valentine Manufacturing. It housed a restaurant called Little Chef for over 50 years.
Sieg describes his food as “different and delicious”.
Menu items range from “LT”, a “huge and messy” sandwich with maple ground beef, applewood bacon and queso topped with chips and chipotle cream sauce, to ” Leia “, a grilled cheese with muenster, brie and apple butter on raisin and cinnamon bread.
The specials are constantly changing and Sieg said she probably has 100 different soups a year. On Thursdays, specialties included a jambalaya soup, a cauliflower and truffle oil soup, and a chilled blackberry soup with goat cheese, basil and balsamic vinegar.
âIt’s a little gourmet but in a sci-fi diner, a retro diner,â she said. “[We have] huge portions. “
The main menu is largely the same as before, but a grilled gouda cheese that was often found on the promotion board is now part of the regular menu. Some of the prices have gone up out of necessity, Sieg said, but all options are under $ 10.
She believes Lady Tron will be “busier than ever”.
âAt the start of last year before COVID, the first three months of this year were the busiest I had been compared to previous months, and it was just getting busier – just more regulars, more customers, word of mouth
âI think we’re just going to get him out of the stadium,â Sieg said. “That’s what I’m hoping for, anyway. People are ready to go out and eat, and they have been.”