When Grady Harreld, Mike Courtney and Joel White bought Briarpatch Restaurant last August, they knew it was an iconic place to dine in the community. The trio recently announced plans to reopen the former Michael’s Pub portion of the restaurant, also completing renovations including new carpeting, an expanded waiting area and an outdoor patio.
“We bought the Briarpatch in August of last year,” Harreld said. “The previous owner did not use the pub. We have decided to buy the property – we also need to take advantage of the pub.
With the restaurant celebrating 50 years in business in 2022, there are plans to redevelop and expand what it has to offer.
“We are tearing down a wall and redesigning the waiting room. We will be redoing the dining room and also adding new flooring, new wall coverings and updated lighting throughout,” Harreld said.
The reopening of the Briarpatch pub is exciting for the owners, who have recognized the need for more space in the establishment.
“The pub will be a little bigger and much more attractive – you can easily walk out of the bar and onto the patio. Customers can venture into the pub or patio and have a drink while they wait,” Harreld said.
Looking ahead, Harreld said if Briarpatch continues to grow, they will need more parking.
“We will try to buy a property next door and have more parking where customers can come straight into the bar,” he said.
An unexpected change under new ownership was the improved quality of steak sold to their customers.
“When we first decided to buy this business, a very positive thing was that our suppliers came to us and said they had a whole new line of steaks, from a new supplier. These steaks were a major factor in Briarpatch’s rebound – they are much higher quality steaks,” Harreld said. “We improved our ribeyes, our fillets, the whole thing. We had hundreds of positive comments on our sequence.
Briarpatch has been operating since 1972, many customers have been visiting the restaurant for decades.
“A lot of them tell me that’s where they came on their first date or where their spouse asked them to marry them at a dinner party in Briarpatch,” Grady said. “We want to create a special atmosphere in this special restaurant.”