Southern celebrity chef Paula Deen is about to open her first restaurant in Texas. Called Paula Deen's Family Kitchen, it'll open on March 26 at Fairview Town Center, according to a Facebook post.
And in possibly even bigger news, Deen herself will make a personal appearance at the restaurant, one month after its debut.
According to a representative, Deen will visit the restaurant in mid-April, with an exact date still TBD.
Deen's previous visits to Dallas include a 2013 appearance at MetroCooking Dallas, a two-day food exhibit at the Dallas Convention Center.
Fairview Town Center is the shopping complex at the northeast corner of US 75 and Stacy Road in Fairview. The restaurant will be located at 163 Fountain Ct., the space left vacant some time ago by the doomed Guy Harvey's Island Grill.
The restaurant will be open for lunch and dinner, and will come with a companion Paula Dean Store, for your merchandising needs.
In a release, Deen says, "I adore all my fans in Texas, and bringing my Southern cooking to the Lone Star State is something I have dreamed about for years. This is the perfect place to bring together family, friends and great Southern food — three of my favorite things!"
The restaurant's menu consists of Deen family recipes, including Southern fried chicken, spare ribs, and fried catfish. Meals are served family style, and guests can order endless portions of Southern-style entrees, side dishes, and desserts. Endless portions.
It'll also serve alcohol including sangrias, margaritas, peach bellinis, wine by the glass, and beer.
Deen offers a colorful quote about the restaurant's complimentary bread.
"I have taken my favorite recipes and brought them to life in an atmosphere that feels just like my own home," she says. "When you come in and are taken to your table, the first thing you're gonna get is biscuits and sweet potato butter that'll make your tongue wanna slap your brains out."
Guests can dine in the 250-seat dining room; browse retail items from Paula's home, kitchen, and lifestyle collection; and enjoy a unique interactive cooking experience at a full-scale replica of Paula’s kitchen called "Cooking with Paula." The restaurant's Facebook page will post updates about how to reserve your experience.
Current Paula Deen's Family Kitchen locations include Pigeon Forge, Tennessee and Myrtle Beach, South Carolina, and another is opening soon in San Antonio. A release says that this new location will be located in the largest inland metropolitan area in the United States with a population in excess of 7,000,000. Is that a dig on Pigeon Forge? Hey small town, we're bigger than you.
Deen has another restaurant, The Lady & Sons, which opened in Savannah, Georgia in 1996.
Matt Gallo, a senior VP for landlord Lincoln Property Company, says they're thrilled. "Paula Deen’s Family Kitchen will further position Fairview Town Center as the place to dine in Northern Collin County — there will truly be something for everyone," he says.
The center has a Dillard's, Macy's, JCPenney, The Container Store, Old Navy, Buckle, Express, Versona Accessories, Gloria’s, Wild Salsa, Cane Rosso, Splitsville Luxury Lanes, Whole Foods Market, and iPic Theaters.