While there are many restaurants falling on hard times in this economy, many are flourishing and have something unique about them that keeps them going strong. Check out these customers, who each have something different about them that keeps new customers and regulars walking through their doors.
Big Woods Brewing Company
In Indiana’s quaint city of Nashville in the historic Brown County is Big Woods Brewing Company. The locals and thousands of tourists visit this microbrewery for great food and beer. Big Woods says their mission “is to make good beers in styles and flavors that appeal not only to craft beef aficionados, but to the average beer drinker as well. We think great beer should be accessible to everyone.” Product Consultant Kate Nolan, who in return is also a customer of theirs, says Big Woods has great ales, atmosphere and food—and especially appreciates their great selection of vegan and vegetarian options. The menu ranges from pan-seared Indiana duck to Chef Emily’s Yumbalaya Jambalaya. Visit Big Woods online and also on Facebook.
At Hampton N.J.’s Hampton Junction, owners Linda and Ralph Curcio sure make it a memorable experience for their guests by allowing them to sit at the counter and watch pasta being made. The restaurant serves breakfast, lunch and dinner—as well as caters, with signature items such as pizzas with dough made of pure honey (not sugar) and of course, homemade pastas. Some customers find it to be an educational experience to sit on the bar stools and be taught by Linda on how the pastas are made. One noted on Urbanspoon, “Linda cooks with love and you feel like you are in her kitchen.” Also, Hampton Junction received the Gold Seal Award for an Exceptionally Clean Kitchen from the Hunterdon County Health Department last year. Visit them online, and check out this video of Linda using the pasta maker!
Luke’s Joint in Arcata, Calif. has a “localcentric” point of view and is committed to providing their customers with a local, organic and healthy selection of menu options, using locally grown produce as much as possible. Owner Luke Patterson, 33, opened this restaurant last year in the popular Arcata Plaza, and customers appreciate the restaurant’s longer hours of operation. The menu is truly diverse, and one Urbanspoon reviewer says “Chef Luke at Luke’s Joint puts together flavors like no-one else, with sublime results.” Patterson recently opened a food cart, The Other Cart, which serves healthy options at great prices (giving customers a quick and convenient way to get food, that isn’t the typical idea of “fast food”). He also opened a second restaurant on September 11 called The Other Place. Visit Luke’s Joint on Facebook, and read more information about them on our blog.
Pie Slinger’s Pizzeria
This family-owned pizzeria opened in 2009 in Chickamauga, Ga., then this year opened a second location in Single Mountain, Tenn. Central Product Consultant Nathan Greider says they have a great atmosphere, kind of like one of those “teenager hang-out spots,” but truly have all ages walking through their doors. The dough is hand-tossed, so customers always enjoy fresh pizza and can even see it being made in action. On top of customers dining in, they can also take advantage of “take and bake” pizza and lasagna. But what Pie Slinger’s may be most well-known for is their 28” pizza, The Behemoth. Pie Slinger’s recently celebrated their second anniversary and held a celebration, donating 10 percent of the proceeds to the St. Jude Children’s Hospital. Visit Pie Slinger’s online and also on Facebook.
Shoup’s Country Foods
For over 30 years, Shoup’s Country Foods in Frankfort, Ind. has been providing quality foods and meats both in their store and in their catering operation. They are especially well-known for their Mini-Hog Roast®, BBQ, porkburgers, barbeque sauce and seasonings. Product Consultant Margaret Lowery says she has been buying their product for over 14 years. It’s a true family operation with owners Tom and Carol Shoup along with their three daughters Cindy, Amy and Cheri who each play a key role in making this a successful operation. On top of Shoup’s products being very popular, they also are the exclusive caterer for the Frankfort Golf Club, a full service dining and banquet facility. They also bring their products to the Indiana State Fair each year and participate in both the Indiana State Fair and Clinton County Backyard BBQ Cookoff events. Visit them online and on Facebook.
Tell us about your restaurant, what makes you unique?