Memphis, Tenn.-based Gus’s Fried Chicken first announced its intent to open in Southtown with a bright yellow sign posted at 812 S. Alamo St., across from Rosario’s. That was in March.
Now, the chicken joint known for its spicy food is finally getting ready to open.
Gus’s Fried Chicken will have a soft opening June 20, and officially open the next day. The company plans to donate 100% of the profits from the soft opening to local charities.
“Once customers first experience our chicken they will first taste our crispy crust, but soon be hit with a sizzle in their mouth that will send you searching for water and munching on your sides,” Assistant General Manager Mark Topham said. “However, our flavor and taste is too good to stop eating and you will want to keep eating more.”
San Antonio will be joining the 31 locations that are scattered throughout 14 states with several in Dallas, Houston and Fort Worth.
When you order your food, expect 2- to 3-piece fried chicken plates with baked beans, potato salad, coleslaw, mac and cheese, and seasoned fries to choose from as your sides, ranging from $10-$20. Dessert options include pecan, sweet potato, coconut and chocolate chess pie. Beer and wine is also available.
Topham said neighboring Southtown restaurants and bars have been supportive.
“We’re excited because we feel like we’re going to help bring a lot of different, new clientele for the neighborhood and help give people another reason to keep on coming back to the area,” Topham said.
The company started off in Mason, Tenn., in 1953, where founders Na and Maggie Vanderbilt sold chicken orders out of the back door of a tavern.
Using a family recipe, the Vanderbilts gained an abundance of support from local chicken lovers that prompted them to open their first restaurant called Maggie’s Orders in 1972, which still stands today.
In 1982 and 1983, Na and Maggie passed away and their only son Vernon “Gus” Bonner and his wife Gertrude took over the establishment and reopened under the new name, “Gus’s World Famous Hot and Spicy Fried Chicken,” in 1984.
Gus’s Fried Chicken will be open 11 a.m. to 9 p.m. Monday-Thursday and 11 a.m. to 10 p.m Friday-Saturday at 812 S. Alamo St.
Rocky Garza Jr. is a freelance journalist in San Antonio and co-editor of The Ranger at San Antonio College. Follow him at @rockssjr on Twitter