We can now confirm that Gus’s Fried Chicken is indeed coming to the River Market in the former space occupied by Redbone’s Downtown. Carter Malloy, a research analyst for Stephens, said today he’s part of a group that has purchased franchise rights for Gus’s for the state of Arkansas. He said the group hopes to expand beyond the River Market location.
Gus’s has been an
east west Tennessee staple for more than 50 years, long a destination sought out by foodies in Mason, Tenn., and more recently at outlets in Memphis. Last year, a Gus’s franchise opened in Nashville.
Malloy said the food would be “exactly the same” as other outlets, that he expected to be open daily and he’s hoping the restaurant will serve beer, but that a full bar is unlikely. Asked about a timeframe for opening, Malloy would only say “sooner rather than later.”
Malloy was cagey about the make-up of the franchise ownership group, but as we reported earlier in the month, filings with the secretary of state show a Gus’s Fried Chicken of Little Rock, later changed to City Fried, LLC. Officers include DGLR, an LLC that lists Daniel Bryant, who holds the lease to the building that will house Gus’s and is a partner in a number of local restaurants and bars, as its only officer, and M&S Holdings of Arkansas, an LLC that includes Malloy and his wife Jennifer Malloy.
Malloy said this was his first restaurant to invest in, but within the partnership, “there’s a wealth of experience in restaurants and restaurant analysis.”
Malloy said he ate at the Memphis location for the first time two years ago, realized it was the best fried chicken he’d ever had and decided to work on bringing it to Arkansas.