Get ready to dig in to some home-style meatloaf or a heaping helping of fried catfish fillets.
If all goes as anticipated, the long-awaited Fred's Southern Kitchen in Riverview is set to open Monday, Nov. 26.
"We're ready to get this thing behind us and get on with it," said Dwayne Williams, chief operating officer for the restaurant chain owned by Fred Johnson.
Permitting delays forced the restaurant chain to push back its summer opening date, said Williams. But he believes it will be worth the wait.
"It's going to be busy," he said. "We feel Riverview will be our best location."
The 5,000-square-foot restaurant sits at the southwest corner of U.S. 301 and Krycul Avenue in the former Fubar's building, 6501 U.S. 301 S., Riverview. It will seat 190 people and employ 80.
This will be Johnson's fifth restaurant. He has restaurants in Plant City, Lakeland, Winter Haven and Bartow along with Johnson Barbecue in Plant City and Southern Gourmet Catering in Lakeland.
Like his other restaurants, the Riverview location will offer a buffet and full menu of Southern foods, serving breakfast, lunch and dinner seven days a week.
The restaurant was founded in Plant City in 1954 by Elton and Evelyn Johnson. They started out with a gas station and sold sandwiches on the side, eventually opening Johnson's Restaurant.
Over the years, the Johnson name became known throughout the area for fine Southern cooking, slow-smoked barbecue and Southern hospitality.
Menu favorites include chicken and dumplings, meatloaf, country-fried steak, barbecue pulled pork, catfish fillets and pot roast served with sides of collards or turnip greens, black-eyed peas, corn pudding, okra and tomatoes and cornbread stuffing.
The restaurant will offer an early-bird special Monday through Friday from 2 to 4 p.m. and kids eat for $1.99 on Tuesdays.
"It’s just a great place," said Williams. "We’re excited to be a part of y'all’s community."
Hours will be Monday through Saturday from 7 a.m. to 8:30 p.m. and Sunday from 8 a.m. to 3 p.m.
For more information, visit the restaurant's website.