Aug 3, 2023 - Business

Lebowski’s and its famous wings now abide in the Reid’s Fine Foods family

The owners of Reid’s Fine Foods and Lebowski’s Neighborhood Grill are teaming up to introduce a “new and improved Lebowski’s on East Boulevard,” an Instagram announcement reads.

What’s happening: The owners of Reid’s Fine Foods — who also own Salted Melon — recently bought Lebowski’s for an undisclosed price.

  • “We’re renovating the space and revamping the menu,” Lebowski’s new owner Richard Coker tells me, adding that they’re “gonna keep it true to the Lebowski’s feel,” just a little cozier inside.  

State of play: Lebowski’s will reopen Aug. 28, just in time for football season.

  • Much of the menu will remain the same, with the addition of some new items, Coker says.
  • “We’re gonna add some booths, some more high tops and we’re also gonna change up the outdoor furniture,” Coker said. 
  • Prices will go up, but only slightly, Coker said. “There will [still] be a deal on wings Wednesday night.” But, he says he isn’t sure about dollar wing nights.

Zoom in: Reid’s, founded in 1928, now has four locations across the Charlotte area, plus its market-restaurant combo The Salted Melon in South End.

Lebowski’s has some of the best wings in town. Photo: Axios archives

The intrigue: Reid’s is an upscale urban market known for its high-end grocery items and fancy cheese plates.

Meanwhile, Lebowski’s was founded by Buffalo native Kirk Weaver in 2009. It quickly became known for its affordable and delicious dollar Buffalo wing nights and its Beef on Weck sandwich, both favorites among the Buffalo Bills fans who flood the place each Sunday in the fall.

  • The owners of the Roasting Company took over from Weaver about a decade later, and it kept the neighborhood bar and grill feel — something Coker says he is also looking to keep. “Growing up in Charlotte, I understand how integral these places can be to families.”

The bottom line: The Beef on Weck and wings are here to stay.

  • And you won’t find high-end grocery items at Lebowski’s — but the quality of food will improve, the new owners say.

Details: Lebowski’s is located at 1524 East Blvd. Once it reopens, it’ll operate seven days a week.

Our thought bubble: This is to say Reid’s and Lebowski’s — one built on high-end foods, the other built on messy hands and wet wipes — are about as natural a match as, say, Reese Witherspoon and “The Dude” himself.

  • But both have long been committed to being welcoming spots that fit their respective neighborhoods, so maybe it’s just the right match, after all.

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