Friday, March 10, 2017

EXCLUSIVE: Gus's World Famous Fried Chicken Destined for Decatur

"World Famous" chicken chain planning new restaurant in Decatur 

Gus's World Famous Fried Chicken, the Memphis based chicken chain that entered the Atlanta market in 2015, is planning to open in Decatur later this fall.  Sources at the restaurant confirmed to me this week that they plan to open in Belvedere Plaza at the corner of Memorial and Columbia Drives, across from the former Columbia [Avondale] Mall, which is today a Walmart Supercenter.  Technically the restaurant is not in the City of Decatur but nonetheless the Belvedere Plaza eatery will be the group's "Decatur" location. 

Gus's will reportedly occupy a 4,400 square foot portion of the former Blockbuster Video, next to Wingstop, on the Columbia Drive end of the center.  
Gus's is expected to occupy a large portion of the former Blockbuster Video 

Belvedere Plaza was built in 1955 and was previously home to a Rich's department store, Haverty's Furniture, Rhodes Furniture, Colonial Food Store, Kroger, Lane Rexall Drugs, F. W. Woolworth and W. T. Grant, among other tenants. [The folks at Next Stop Decatur put together a cool Belvedere Plaza historical blog here

Today, Belvedere Plaza is anchored by a Kroger Citi Center grocery store and Value Village thrift store.  The center is also home to Wingstop, Hibbett Sports and Dollar Tree, as well as freestanding Checkers and Sonic restaurants, among other tenants.  
Belvedere Plaza sits at the corner of Memorial and Columbia Drives  

A second Atlanta area Gus's opened earlier this week on Roswell Road in Sandy Springs to be followed by a third area location in Chamblee later this summer.  The original Atlanta area Gus's is located in Peachtree Center downtown.  

BCS Restaurant Ventures, LLC, the franchise group leading the restaurant's expansion in metro Atlanta, previously announced plans to open at least five locations in the Atlanta market in the coming years.

While BCS has been targeting "Decatur" for some time, their choice of Belvedere Plaza is a bit odd.  

Both Popeyes Louisiana Kitchen and Zaxby's operate existing restaurants across the street from Belvedere Plaza, while a Bojangles' is expected to open next to the nearby Walmart Supercenter.  All three of these fast food chicken operators offer affordable food that seems to be in line with what the community supports.  

Plates (combos) at the Gus's in Sandy Springs start at about nine bucks and go up to almost $14.  Similarly sized portions at the aforementioned fast food outlets would cost about half of that.  

Gus's proudly promotes that "we only serve fresh, never frozen, natural, hormone-free chicken..."  Their pricing reflects this commitment to quality, and while their prices are not outrageous by Atlanta standards, I tend to think they would be easier to digest closer to downtown Decatur.  

Are you a fan of Gus's World Famous Fried Chicken? Do you think Gus's will do well at Belvedere Plaza?  Where else would you like to see Gus's open in metro Atlanta?

Please share your thoughts below.  


Indi said...

If people are going to complain that the prices of Gus's fried chicken is higher then maybe they should go to Popeye's or something of lower quality and keep it moving. You make it sound like 5 extra dollars is going to break the bank for people in that area.

Anonymous said...

$5 doesn't sound like much until you consider it as a percentage. Is their chicken twice as good?

Anonymous said...

I know that area. I think it is a terrible location. They will save a lot on rent, but don't believe it will end up more profitable because I think their sales will be SUBSTANTIALLY lower.

Anonymous said...

@Indi - That's exactly what the author is saying. In this area, there is Zaxby's, Popeyes, Bojangles, etc. That's what works in this area. Higher end chicken belongs in downtown Decatur or a more affluent area. And $5 is a big deal for people who may earn $40K a year.

Anonymous said...

Surprised they chose that area when they have 3 new options in Decatur at Church and N Decatur Rds

Anonymous said...

Would expect a professional logo from an expensive "World Famous" establishment.

Kevin said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Anonymous said...

While you cant judge a book by its cover, I must concur,I can't see myself spending a lot of money for chicken as there are other areas that have quality chicken that may taste just as good..or even better than theres

Anonymous said...

I work on residential rentals in that neighborhood. At that intersection, Walmart is the classiest business on the four corners, with Taco Bell the runner up. It's going to be a tough row to make money there with mid-priced chicken.

I agree with a previous poster that this is probably a locational error for Gus.

I think they would have more success closer to the guv'ment employees nearer Memorial and I285.

Anonymous said...

When and why did this area become so ghetto? Did white folks just keep moving further out?

Anonymous said...

This location should work fine. It is very close to both city of Decatur and Avondale Estates. Don't underestimate the location. People in the community don't mind spending on food that is of good quality. This is an addition that will be well received by the surrounding area.

marcus said...


Coolio said...

Tried the chicken at the Roswell Road location last week during their "soft" opening. Ew... yuck. NOT worth the price at all. Restaurant really wasn't that crowded, but it still took 15 minutes to received the order. And get this: even though I ordered only 2 wings, I received a wing and a drumstick. This is why fast food workers don't deserve anything over $10/hr.

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