Monday, November 16, 2020

[ALERT] Former Folks in Marietta and Tucker to Reopen as New Restaurants from Owners of Landmark Diner

The family that owns Atlanta's Landmark Diner has acquired the former Folks Southern Kitchen restaurants in Marietta and Tucker and plans to open new restaurants at each site in the coming months.  Planning documents suggest each new restaurant will operate as "Landmark Diner" but sources close to the restaurant indicate that while both may feature a menu similar to Landmark's, the name is expected to be different.  Anastasios (Tom) & Carolyn Lambrou opened the original Landmark Diner at the intersection of Piedmont and Roswell Roads in Buckhead in 1994.  A second location, in the street level of the Helen M. Aderhold Learning Center at Georgia State University's downtown campus, opened in 2003.  

The former Marietta Folks (2031 Cobb Parkway), a local mainstay for nearly 40 years, closed last December, months before the coronavirus brought it and so many restaurants to the brink.  The Tucker location (4286 LaVista Road), also a community favorite for decades, officially closed in April, a casualty of the pandemic which caused not only its closure but the permanent shutter of the other two remaining Folks restaurants in Hiram and Woodstock too.  ToNeTo Atlanta reported April 7 that the three Folks closures planned to be only temporary in late March, were later made permanent by the restaurant's chapter 7 (liquidation) bankruptcy filing in early April.  

Local real estate brokerage Norton Commercial had been marketing both the Marietta and Tucker former Folks restaurants for sale.  ToNeTo Atlanta is aware of at least one other interested party in the Tucker location but the fact that the Lambrou family purchased both sites likely helped their case in getting the deal done.  [ToNeTo Atlanta reported in 2018 that RaceTrac was planning a new location in place of the Marietta Folks and adjacent Chevron but later called off those plans and it's unclear if they were ever back in the picture or expressed interest in the site following the restaurant's closure.]  

ToNeTo Atlanta first got wind of the Lambrou's reported purchase of the former Folks in Tucker over the summer but at the time was unable to confirm the sale.  

Tax documents in Cobb and DeKalb counties confirm the sales of both former Folks to "Piros Enterprises, LLC," an entity controlled by Anastasios (Tom) & Carolyn Lambrou with headquarters at their home on Lake Forrest Drive in Sandy Springs.  

The sales listings from Norton - both of which are still active - indicate the asking price for the 5,049 square foot Marietta restaurant which occupied a .98 acre site, was $1.795M.  In Tucker, where Folks occupied both a larger parcel (1.49 acres) and had a larger building (6,329 square feet), the asking price was $2.6M.  

Tax documents filed September 25 in both Cobb and DeKalb counties indicate the Marietta site sold for $1.32M (about 74% of asking) and the Tucker site sold for $1,544,400 (about 59% of asking).  Both sites were sold by "King & Pratt LLC," the parent company of Folks Inc., named for Folks founders, Richard J. Pratt and Richard W. King.  

The addition of a diner-type restaurant should be a welcome addition to the Tucker community where local favorite Galaxy Diner closed on Henderson Mill Road at Embry Village this past December after fifteen years in business.  In the 90s, Northlake Diner operated from 3824 LaVista Road next to the Northlake Barbara Loar Library where Georgia United Credit Union today operates from a former BB&T building built in place of the former diner.  

In Marietta, the Lambrou's new restaurant will put it in competition with Cobb Parkway icon the Marietta Diner, a 24-hour eatery and an area mainstay since its debut 25 years ago.  Marietta Diner owner Gus Tselios also owns several other restaurants in the area including Marietta Fish Market, Casa Grande, Cherokee Cattle Co., Pasta Bella and Yeero Village.  Marietta Diner, easily Tselios' most popular and successful restaurant, has been featured on Food Network’s “Diner, Drive-ins and Dives” and even added a custom "drive-thru" earlier this year to help facilitate sales for the restaurant as the effects of the pandemic limited their ability to serve customers as they had previously.  

In addition to the two Landmark Diner locations, the Lambrous, together with their son, chef Nicholas Lambrou, also own Midtown Diner on Peachtree Street in Midtown and Delray Diner on Delk Road in Marietta which they opened in 2017 in place of what was for many years Spaghetti Warehouse.  [Cobb tax records indicate the family spent $1.7M on the 3.66 acre Delray Diner site.] 

It is clear from the outpouring of comments and shares on our earlier coverage of the Folks restaurant closures in metro Atlanta that many diners still enjoyed the classic southern fare of the local eatery.  Hopefully the Lambrous keep this in mind when fine-tuning their concepts and deliver a restaurant the Marietta and Tucker communities will embrace.  

Are you excited for the planned openings of these new restaurants in Marietta and Tucker?  Were you a fan of Folks?  What is your all-time favorite diner menu item?  

Please share your thoughts below  

13 comments:

Unknown said...

I LOVE FOLKS !!! I CAN'T WAIT TILL MARIETTA REOPENS !!! HURRY PLEASE !!! J.DAVENPORT

Anonymous said...

are you sure Galaxy was only 15 years old? I was pretty sure it was older than that. Also where kaycee's buffet is located, that was also called 'Northlake Diner' for a little while. But it wasn't a diner for very long.

Ham said...

I would occasionally pop into the Tucker Folks, but it did seem to be getting a little "tired". I'll checkout the new place and would love an eclectic menu with some possible healthy options.

Unknown said...

PLEASE GET THE MARIETTA RESTRUNT OPEN AS SOON AS YOU CAN !!! I LOVE FOLKS FOOD ! I MISS EATING THERE 2 TO 3 TIMES IN A WEEK OR TWO !! THANKS Y'ALL !!

Anonymous said...

I was hoping the Tucker spot could do better than crappy Greek diner food. Oh well...

SB said...

No comment on Cheshire location?

Kat said...

glad to see this happen. IMO, Folks had been spiraling down for years. this is the South. you can't half-a$$ Southern cooking down here.
a diner in the Northlake area will be welcome since Galaxy closed down. some of the Landmark Diners in the area have had health inspection issues in the past. hopefully standards will be high at the new locations.

Anonymous said...

@Davenport - Sorry, Folks isn't reopening. This is a new restaurant.

Anonymous said...

When will the Tucker location open?

Unknown said...

Did you read article?

Unknown said...

Agree. They are dated.Kind of like Sears.

Unknown said...

Apparently no one read article 🤦‍♀️

Coolio said...

@ Davenport: I don't think ALL CAPS is going to help Folks reopen any of their locations dude.

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