By David Batterson,
June 20, 2012
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I sure hope whoever leases the place understands the power of that Johnny R character on the sign. They'd be foolish to change the name.
I admit I know nothing about the restaurant business. But it's a sign of the times as mom 'n' pop restaurants (and stores) continue to disappear across the country. They simply cannot compete anymore with the regional and national chain operations.
The restaurant operator (who took over from "Johnny R") could not make it work. I think they would be foolish to KEEP the name if the site remains a restaurant, as it doesn't have the panache needed. It is too dated. Midrange, stylish restaurants seem to be what diners want now. Not high price, but not fast food either. Like Pita Jungle, which now occupies an old space.in Hillcrest,
I think Dwbat is absolutly correct. Change the name, and move in a stylish, mid-price range restaurant serving quality fresh food and maybe alchohol. There are many cutomers within walking or short drive distance to this location.
It looks like that is happening. According to the Facebook page for Brians' American Eatery: "So to put any rumors to rest: Brians' American Eatery on Washington will not be re-opening. Instead we are moving to Lil B's at 2611 El Cajon Blvd. Yes, it is the former location of Johnny's R Family Restaurant."
I went by today for a look, and the renovations are going fast. The owner (Brian) was there, and said their opening should be around Sept. 9. The employees at the old Brians' are all coming aboard too, he said. [Yes, Brians' is spelled correctly because there were two Brians at the now-closed restaurant.]
I went by today and Lil B's is now open. Will try it out soon.
August 11 update: Lil B's is closed. Recently when I ate there it was "cash only"; at the time I thought that was strange. Supposedly it was temporary as they were "changing credit card processing companies." But I'm guessing that was a bogus story.
Don Bauder 2:30 p.m., Aug. 25
Ken Harrison 1:30 p.m., Aug. 25
Scott Marks noon, Aug. 25
Vincent Farnsworth 11:30 a.m., Aug. 25
Ian Anderson 11 a.m., Aug. 25
Dave Rice 9:30 a.m., Aug. 25
Don Bauder 7:30 a.m., Aug. 25
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