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Sunday, November 18, 2018

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Original Frenchy’s Chicken is soon to be a memory


frenchyshouston

There are still multiple Frenchy’s restaurants around Houston, but they are incomparable to the original. | Courtesy of Wikimedia Commons

Wheeler Avenue Baptist Church (WBC) has announced that in its plans to expand, and that means the original Frenchy’s Chicken has to go.

Frenchy’s has been in the same spot since it was first opened by Percy Creuzot in 1969. Since then, it has shared the same corner of the street with WBC. Last summer, WBC acquired the land that the eatery sits upon and made plans to expand the church onto the property.

Although there are several dozen other locations throughout Houston, the eventual tearing down of the original establishment deeply saddened me. The first time I went there, I was greeted by nice people behind the counter and given some of the best chicken and fries I have ever had.

It is always sad to see the first of anything go — especially when it is a business that has been a part of the Third Ward since 1969.

Although a lot of people just see Frenchy’s as a small-time fast food restaurant, it is so much more than that. It is a business that has emerged from the unique culture of the neighborhood.

Businesses built from the ground up by people with a dream are what Houston is all about. Until it became a chain in the mid-seventies, Frenchy’s was a cultural icon exclusive to only this part of town.

I have eaten at some of the Frenchy’s chains outside of the Third Ward and I must admit that they were never at the same level as the one right off campus. This could be chalked up to the fact that not all of them are directly managed by the Creuzot family. That is why I keep coming back to the one on Wheeler.

The church has every right to acquire a land and demolish a building, but it hurts that they chose an establishment that is a landmark of Houston and a representation of African-American success in a time when it was not as common.

My only hope is that Frenchy’s will make up for its coming loss of breaded-fried goodness in the Third Ward with another joint not too far from the University.

Assistant opinion editor Thom Dwyer is a broadcast journalism sophomore and can be reached at [email protected]

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