IT'S A FAMILY AFFAIR -
BSC, CA – I may kid about being this valley's male Lois Lane, but I am not joking. Take, for instance, the latest story about a soul food cafe opening up in Murrieta. In a place with no grid system where every street either turns a bend or goes over a hill in either direction you look, and a journalist who finds it easier to obtain a Shungite stone in Orange Country than go across town having moved beyond personal transportation, well you get my point.
So, how does a wizard who lives up on a hill find out about a family with ties to LA, Arkansas, and Louisiana, with a cousin who dresses better than Don King? And is a Panthers Fan? It's as they say in Hollywood, it's who you know. This time I knew the family who chiefed Sonny Boy's restaurant location before he did. It had been an Afghan ethnic food cafe. Though I never visited the business, I helped the fam move into the valley through their cousin and my friend, AJ, the guy who brought Fingerlights into the valley before Dip 'n' Dots [now the Triple Beverage tea-juice-ice spot next to Shakey's, Palm Plaza].
As we rode around the valley one day AJ says, “The people who bought the [old location] were offered the contact for the gyros because that item was a main seller and had a market, but they turned it down.”
“What kind of restaurant are they putting in?”
“Soul food.” As the opening bars to the Sam and Dave Stax Records hit popped into my head, I chimed back, “Nobody goes to a soul food place for gyros. They go for the soul food.”
Conveniently located by car or bus [NB 23 across/Chevron, SB 23 Little Caesar's end] in the Cal Oaks Barons Center, an upscale fixture in the city since the time I lived around the corner, I was back for the soul food and to capture the opening day crowd.
Murrieta's Business Development Manager, Scott Agajanian, was in the house.
The staff was a family affair, starting with Sunny Boy, Sr. and an aunt, both from out-of-state.
Inside the staff was taking care of business*.
While the man in blue, knew what to do.
Southern-styled good eats.
And though the sign says 'dine in or take out' I grabbed an order of fried catfish, fresh mashed potatoes w/gravy, [yummy] green beans, and a corn bread muffin with a pat of butter to dine out, saying good-bye to the friendly faces and delicious smells associated with real 'soul food'. $$
"Best Soul Food since Sharon's" - PT Rothschild
(*- Yes, I know the band who had a hit with that title never played Soul Train.)