It was just last fall that we met Scott Jones of Jack's Southern Comfort Food on Lower Greenville. After a decade-plus in the Dallas restaurant scene, Jones put his soul into opening this restaurant, pulling from dishes that he grew up with and adding to it his vast experience in the industry. The result was a cozy spot that felt like a restaurant on a Main Street in a small town, serving up plates of from-scratch big biscuits and fried green tomatoes.
When news broke that Jones was closing shop not because business was bad, but primarily due to a lack of customer parking, it was a bit of a surprise. Then he filed suit over it -- and won.
"The parking at Jack's was misrepresented and as result of this, I was able to terminate my lease and have a three-month exit timeline at a greatly reduced rent," he says.
Closing shop after less than a year of business is no doubt painful. The restaurant was getting established in the area; moving is a risk.
"We had an enormously positive experience opening Jack's," Jones says. "I loved the neighborhood, the clientele and the loving embrace we received for the food that I so passionately created and served."
For Jones, the decision to move didn't come easily.
"It was by far the hardest thing I've had to do, but I have always believed that all things happens for a reason and that the next incarnation of Jack's will be amazing and these hard times will be worth it."
At the end of the day, if customer parking is limited, then it's impossible to grow business, he says. So moving was a necessity, and Jack's last day of business was Sunday. Currently he's is negotiating several different deals, including in Casa Linda and another spot on Greenville. Jones plans to open a new spot by January of 2014. Until then, he's still running his catering business through a commercial kitchen.
When asked what he's been able to take from this experience, Jones says he isn't sure: "I don't know, especially since I did the due diligence necessary to avoid the pit falls that came my way, but as I said, there is a lesson to be learned, it just hasn't revealed itself yet."
Stay tuned for Jack's Southern Comfort Food part two. We suspect there will be ample parking.