By Landan Kuhlmann
and Betsy Denson
The new year in 2019 is bound to bring some sadness to Heights-area restaurant goers, as a long-time comfort food staple will be consolidated to a location outside the local neighborhood over the next few months.
Braun Enterprises sent out an e-mail blast about restaurant space for lease at 101 Heights Avenue. That is currently the home of long time restaurant Hickory Hollow, and has served up juicy chicken fried steak at its Heights location for more than 30 years.
CultureMap reported that owner Tony Riedel has sold the property but that the Fallbrook location will remain open. Riedel told CultureMap that he credits the restaurant’s plethora of long-time employees for its long-standing tradition in the Heights area.
Hickory Hollow has long-maintained a presence in the area as one of the city’s lone sites that hosted both live musical acts and food service with no cover or minimum ordering standards. The sounds of bluegrass and folk music have been heard emanating from the restaurant’s back room for three decades — but Riedel has decided it’s just time to hang it up.
“I’ve been at this for 50 years. I’ll be 70 this year. It’s time to step back,” he told CultureMap. “I’m working towards that, which I imagine will be 2020 [when that happens.] This is step number one.”
Riedel told CultureMap that Braun approached him two years ago about buying the 4,400 square foot building – and its ample parking lot. Some recent health scares convinced Riedel at last to sell.However, further details of the sale have not yet been disclosed.
Braun’s Zach Wolf said that Riedel will be consolidating the business in his Fallbrook location at the end of January 2019.
“We are actively marketing this property to restaurant users,” Wolf told The Leader. “We strongly value well placed inner loop second generation restaurants. This building has a unique history and it is important to Braun Enterprises to try and preserve that. The property is directly across the street from the brand new mixed-use HEB. There is already tremendous traffic in this area and it will only increase with this project. The area only continues to get more dense with office and apartments.”
There is no word yet on what type of tenant Braun will search for in order to fill the vacancy, though it is currently being marketed for lease as a restaurant space. The company has already redeveloped (or is in the process of redeveloping) more than 30 older buildings in the Heights area into new-age retail and restaurant properties, such as Harold’s and the old Heights Water Works site.
Interested in getting in to the restaurant business? Check out the flyer at: https://www.braunenterprises.com/properties/