Chili’s Co-Founder Opens Local BBQ


Loop 9 BBQ | Image by Loop 9 BBQ/Facebook

A co-founder of Chili’s has opened a new barbecue restaurant in Grand Prairie, as reported by The Dallas Morning News.

Loop 9 BBQ, which opened March 6, is restaurateur Larry Lavine’s new smokehouse experience.

His expertise started in March 1975, when Chili’s opened its first restaurant and grill in Dallas, according to Nation’s Restaurant News. In 1983, Lavine sold the business to Norman Brinker, founder of the Dallas-based business Brinker International. The company also owns Maggiano’s Little Italy and It’s Just Wings.

Lavine’s new restaurant has the capacity for 100 people indoors and 125 outdoors. Nearly all of the barbecue recipes were developed by Lavine himself, according to the DMN. His wife, Ann Lavine, created the other menu spotlight: pies, made from scratch.

Items on the barbeque menu include burnt-end queso, brisket, pulled pork, and pork ribs, while the dessert menu features banana pudding and key lime pie. Others, such as chocolate cream and coconut pie, will be added at a later date.

This new restaurant also will feature a view of Grand Prairie’s newest developments in EpicCentral, which rests on the western side of the George W. Bush Turnpike.

The 172-acre park is developing two new hotels, a convention center, and four restaurant buildings near an indoor water park, a 120,000-square-foot fitness center, and a recreation center for people over 50. Other restaurants on the property include the Finch, Vidorra, and Poach’d, plus a food hall featuring Serious Pizza, Serious Sliders, and Serious Shakes, according to Grand Prairie Parks, Arts & Recreation.

Other attractions on the property include Bolder Indoor Adventure Park and an interactive spring break water show planned for March 8-19.

EpicCentral creative producer Zane King hopes each of these restaurants around Loop 9 also will be open by summer, according to the DMN, and aims for the overall developments to transform the area into a new district called Epic Quarter.

“And it’s finally coming to fruition,” King told the DMN.

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