Tuesday, October 25, 2011

Buckeye's Fried Chicken on Michigan Avenue closed down today. That location appears to be jinxed. The owner blames employee theft and bad press. It's too bad, as he invested a lot of his own money in an effort to create jobs. The restaurant business is a tough one. It seems as though most new ones fail...

“The stuff I’ve been going through trying to help people and deter crime has been absolutely brutal,” Davis said. “I could have easily kept my retirement money and moved to Miami, but I didn’t because I wanted to make a difference. And all I caught was hell.”

Davis said some employees tried to extort money from him by filing false claims of not being compensated to the Labor Department. And he claims a former worker has threatened a sexual harassment suit if he doesn’t pay her $1,000.

Doesn't sound like fun times. To me, the best formula for the success of a new restaurant is to start small. While location is important, keeping losses to a minimum (should the business fail) is also paramount. If the food is good, people will go there. If you're not from the neighborhood, you might need a GPS to find Mullberry's in Lackawanna. It's hidden in a residential neighborhood. But, the place is always packed because the word has gotten around. I've never been there, but I hear the same thing about Mattie's on the East Side. I give Mr. Davis great credit for trying to do something downtown. However, in the end, it may have come down to the product. But, at least he made the effort.

Buckeye’s closes after 10 months; founder blames trouble with employees


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