Crystal Grille In Greenwood Closing

dorndawg

Well-known member
Sep 10, 2012
6,692
4,358
113
If you haven’t been in the last 5 years you should take a ride. There are about 100 residential roof tops now and they have added a small grocery store with a deli that has great sandwiches. A coffee shop. Grit restaurant is good. It’s worth a drive if you’re around Oxford or live within an hour.
I haven't been so I don't actually know, but that kinda sounds like everywhere else and not anything unique?
 
  • Like
Reactions: Maroon Eagle

BoDawg.sixpack

Well-known member
Feb 5, 2010
4,181
1,162
113
Driving around any town USA during lunch time during the week, it's hard to imagine any restaurant going out of business. And there's plenty of obesity as evidence. Food prices haven't stopped many people from not just eating but gorging themselves.
 

AlCoDog

Well-known member
Feb 27, 2008
5,770
1,226
113
I haven't been so I don't actually know, but that kinda sounds like everywhere else and not anything unique?
It is unique in style. Reminds me of beach town where the houses are smaller painted pastel colors and on very small lots and porches. It’s definitely not a typical development. A house will cost you about $300/sq ft.
 
  • Like
Reactions: dorndawg

dudehead

Active member
Jul 9, 2006
1,262
278
83
Driving around any town USA during lunch time during the week, it's hard to imagine any restaurant going out of business. And there's plenty of obesity as evidence. Food prices haven't stopped many people from not just eating but gorging themselves.
Our obesity is from eating the predominant highly processed and "sugarfied" foods and seed oils that make up our American diet today. The owner of the Crystal Grille said it in the MPB video that they were one of the few "scratch" restaurants around because they make and serve foods from scratch and not from processed institutional foods. I've never heard a restauranteur use that term "scratch restaurant" but it makes sense.
 

PooPopsBaldHead

Well-known member
Dec 15, 2017
7,791
4,544
113
Merely curious, but how much is a large pepperoni or whatever?
Ding-ding.

$24 for a large pepperoni
$1800/month for a 700 square foot apartment

A dollar is worth $.55 or so around here.

This is the best argument against a high minimum wage. The $24 pepperoni and $30/hr part timer works in a resort town in the mountains, but not a farming town down in the plain. The market figures it out.
 

BoDawg.sixpack

Well-known member
Feb 5, 2010
4,181
1,162
113
Our obesity is from eating the predominant highly processed and "sugarfied" foods and seed oils that make up our American diet today. The owner of the Crystal Grille said it in the MPB video that they were one of the few "scratch" restaurants around because they make and serve foods from scratch and not from processed institutional foods. I've never heard a restauranteur use that term "scratch restaurant" but it makes sense.
It's also from granulated sugar and oversized portions of food. You don't need to eat enough food in a meal for four people, and you don't need 16 oz of tea that has 200 g of sugar mixed in.
 

jethreauxdawg

Well-known member
Dec 20, 2010
8,627
7,941
113
Acknowledging groceries have also risen in price, I can't help but imagine this will lead to folks cooking at home more. It's honestly not that difficult, and as referenced in this thread it is increasingly a better experience, not to mention (usually) more nutritious and way more bang for your buck.
Preach. Crockpot meals are fantastic. Throw the stuff in there in the morning and it’s ready when you get home. Feed a large family for less than $15. Lots of fairly quick meals that can be thrown together and cooked in the oven fairly quickly as well. Besides the cost savings and equal flavor (at worst, better at home most of the time), the convenience factor of being able to eat at home is worth a lot to me.
 

DesotoCountyDawg

Well-known member
Nov 16, 2005
21,436
8,013
113
Our obesity is from eating the predominant highly processed and "sugarfied" foods and seed oils that make up our American diet today. The owner of the Crystal Grille said it in the MPB video that they were one of the few "scratch" restaurants around because they make and serve foods from scratch and not from processed institutional foods. I've never heard a restauranteur use that term "scratch restaurant" but it makes sense.
Calories in calories out. You can eat those things in moderation.
 
  • Like
Reactions: She Mate Me

johnson86-1

Well-known member
Aug 22, 2012
11,994
2,189
113
The economy is crushing restaurants. If the current conditions continue you’ll see more of this going forward esp in niche markets (like the delta) and esp high-end fine dining.

I think the high-end fine dining may actually be doing better, provided they aren't in smallish towns, because the people that go to those places regularly tend to be hurting the least from the economy.
 
  • Like
Reactions: patdog

DesotoCountyDawg

Well-known member
Nov 16, 2005
21,436
8,013
113
Calories in calories out is the physics of it, but there's a lot more to it than that. I do think our 17ed up diets have made people crave worse things and possibly messed up people's metabolism.
Fad diets are literally the worst. You can’t maintain that.
 
  • Like
Reactions: patdog

oh yeah

Member
Aug 28, 2017
204
18
18
Ding-ding.

$24 for a large pepperoni
$1800/month for a 700 square foot apartment

A dollar is worth $.55 or so around here.

This is the best argument against a high minimum wage. The $24 pepperoni and $30/hr part timer works in a resort town in the mountains, but not a farming town down in the plain. The market figures it out.
We'll all be ordering at the kiosk (or on the app)before too long. I mean it's already mostly happening, but not fully. I would think that's a product of the increased minimim pay as well.
 

johnson86-1

Well-known member
Aug 22, 2012
11,994
2,189
113
Fad diets are literally the worst. You can’t maintain that.
I don't mean fad diets, I just mean the way we eat in general. Tons of refined sugar and then also there are the people that unfortunately tried to follow government guidelines, making it much harder to limit themselves to 2,000 calories or whatever amount they need without being starving.

I don't even know that fad diets that can't be maintained are terrible as long as people know what they are getting into. Jumpstarting weightloss with something like a carnivore diet seems fine? Same with an adkins diet?

But just generally eating more protein and fiber and limiting carbs would help a lot of people lose weight without having to feel like they're depriving themselves. Combine that with cutting out snacks (which is a lot easier if you are full from eating good food) and just counting calories so you are intentional about what you are doing and I think that would put 95% of people at a healthy weight over time.
 

johnson86-1

Well-known member
Aug 22, 2012
11,994
2,189
113
We'll all be ordering at the kiosk (or on the app)before too long. I mean it's already mostly happening, but not fully. I would think that's a product of the increased minimim pay as well.
Partly accelerated by dumb minimum wage laws, but baumol's cost disease will require that a lot of low productivity work be automated or just dropped altogether.
 

FreeDawg

Member
Oct 6, 2010
3,602
167
48

I think the high-end fine dining may actually be doing better, provided they aren't in smallish towns, because the people that go to those places regularly tend to be hurting the least from the economy.

That’s actually opposite of what’s happening. Anytime there is an economic disturbance, the higher price point feels it first. During the 08 crash, fast food hit record profits while high-end was decimated. Your stars are always going to be stars and can withstand a 10% drawdown through tighter budgeting but several big markets are down 20ish%.

Restaurant news ran an article in this months edition about a “steet fight” erupting is the fast food and fast casual sectors over value drivin customers ie lower income. Cliffs: 6-figure households are eating more fast food & value-driven customers have disappeared. Article had quotes from c-suite execs of Wendy’s, Applebees, & McDonalds.
 

She Mate Me

Well-known member
Dec 7, 2008
9,131
5,503
113
Fast food cheeseburger & fries at $9 is fine, at $12 it’s disappointing.
The deli that served sandwhich/salad/tea combo for $12 is great, at $18 it’s meh.
The local fish house that was $13 a catfish platter 4 years ago was fun, at $21 not so much.
The Mexican joint that a family of 5 could have margs, queso, & a meal for $60 tip included is now $73 pre tip.

Your point is valid. That said, I hope everyone understands it’s not the restaurants fault. It’s the governments fault. They have totally screwed us since 2020.

I absolutely understand it's not the restaurant's fault. It's always been a very difficult business. I imagine it's hellish trying to make it in this environment.
 
  • Like
Reactions: FreeDawg

travis.sixpack

Well-known member
Mar 3, 2008
974
935
93
I haven't been so I don't actually know, but that kinda sounds like everywhere else and not anything unique?
It's a rip off of dozens of other TNDs (traditional neighborhood design) around the South. There is a much better version near where I live, but even that one has a fake quality about it. They have to manufacture events because there's not enough of a real population for things to happen organically. Drive through there on a Monday morning and I bet it's desolate.

It's perfect for Oxford.

ETA: I was wandering around their website and I saw they had rip off of the Southern Living House that was built at Terra Bella.
 
  • Like
Reactions: Darryl Steight

She Mate Me

Well-known member
Dec 7, 2008
9,131
5,503
113
Our obesity is from eating the predominant highly processed and "sugarfied" foods and seed oils that make up our American diet today. The owner of the Crystal Grille said it in the MPB video that they were one of the few "scratch" restaurants around because they make and serve foods from scratch and not from processed institutional foods. I've never heard a restauranteur use that term "scratch restaurant" but it makes sense.

Eating the wrong stuff is definitely a big part of the fat problem here. But as someone who has gotten back to a pretty reasonable weight for my age height, etc., I'm now kinda appalled at the sheer quantities that people eat.

I definitely did it in my younger years, but the amount of food we consider a normal meal in this country is just way out of whack. I can happily get a small hamburger, small fry, or just two small hamburgers with a sugary drink and be satisfied. It's plenty of calories and if you don't overeat those kinds of calories, I'd argue they are not really bad for you, relatively.
 

patdog

Well-known member
May 28, 2007
47,279
10,211
113
It's a rip off of dozens of other TNDs (traditional neighborhood design) around the South. There is a much better version near where I live, but even that one has a fake quality about it. They have to manufacture events because there's not enough of a real population for things to happen organically. Drive through there on a Monday morning and I bet it's desolate.

It's perfect for Oxford.

ETA: I was wandering around their website and I saw they had rip off of the Southern Living House that was built at Terra Bella.
If I'm gonna spend that much money on a house, it's damn sure not going to be in a tight, congested neighborhood right next to a business district (and traffic).
 

FreeDawg

Member
Oct 6, 2010
3,602
167
48
I absolutely understand it's not the restaurant's fault. It's always been a very difficult business. I imagine it's hellish trying to make it in this environment.
It’s def bigger than just restaurants, it’s really the big corporate places vs mom & pop. The current economic environment really handcuffs the locally owned joints and it’s all about absorbing the cost. Even like with hardware stores, I know Lowes is cheaper than Revel Ace but at Ace I can get better service and some guidance on a job I can’t get at Lowe’s.

With restraunts specifically, the tight environment stacks competitive advantage to bigger fish. Example: Lets say I buy 75k lbs of chicken a year. Sounds like a lot but if I’m independent and I’m selling a chicken sandwich & my competitors are CFA, Popeyes, etc… they’re all independently negotiating chicken contracts leveraging millions and millions of lbs of chicken which gets them a better price. Even if my local food purveyor, let’s say Sysco, finds a line for me and 4 other local joints only us use, their poultry guy is negotiating with a 200k lb group buy that they have to earn a nickel off too. What the locally owned places have to do to kick the corporate place asses on service, experience, & quality. Very doable but the worse economic conditions the middle class family is enduring, the more price sensative they are.

My best recommendation, and it’s one Mississippians do really well, is rabidly support you’re locally owned stars and most will be fine through the valleys.
 
  • Like
Reactions: She Mate Me

dudehead

Active member
Jul 9, 2006
1,262
278
83
It's a rip off of dozens of other TNDs (traditional neighborhood design) around the South. There is a much better version near where I live, but even that one has a fake quality about it. They have to manufacture events because there's not enough of a real population for things to happen organically. Drive through there on a Monday morning and I bet it's desolate.

It's perfect for Oxford.

ETA: I was wandering around their website and I saw they had rip off of the Southern Living House that was built at Terra Bella.
That Terrabella place is a bit too Disney Worldish for my liking, but it does look pretty. Kinda reminds me of a Chi O back in my day.
 
  • Like
Reactions: patdog

She Mate Me

Well-known member
Dec 7, 2008
9,131
5,503
113
It’s def bigger than just restaurants, it’s really the big corporate places vs mom & pop. The current economic environment really handcuffs the locally owned joints and it’s all about absorbing the cost. Even like with hardware stores, I know Lowes is cheaper than Revel Ace but at Ace I can get better service and some guidance on a job I can’t get at Lowe’s.

With restraunts specifically, the tight environment stacks competitive advantage to bigger fish. Example: Lets say I buy 75k lbs of chicken a year. Sounds like a lot but if I’m independent and I’m selling a chicken sandwich & my competitors are CFA, Popeyes, etc… they’re all independently negotiating chicken contracts leveraging millions and millions of lbs of chicken which gets them a better price. Even if my local food purveyor, let’s say Sysco, finds a line for me and 4 other local joints only us use, their poultry guy is negotiating with a 200k lb group buy that they have to earn a nickel off too. What the locally owned places have to do to kick the corporate place asses on service, experience, & quality. Very doable but the worse economic conditions the middle class family is enduring, the more price sensative they are.

My best recommendation, and it’s one Mississippians do really well, is rabidly support you’re locally owned stars and most will be fine through the valleys.

Makes sense. The only restaurant food I eat that's not locally owned is fast food. If I'm going to pay more than $15 for a meal it's going to be with a locally owned restaurant that does a good job.

ETA I do realize that some of the chain outfits do have somewhat local ownership in the form of franchisees.
 
  • Like
Reactions: Double Dawg

DesotoCountyDawg

Well-known member
Nov 16, 2005
21,436
8,013
113
Eating the wrong stuff is definitely a big part of the fat problem here. But as someone who has gotten back to a pretty reasonable weight for my age height, etc., I'm now kinda appalled at the sheer quantities that people eat.

I definitely did it in my younger years, but the amount of food we consider a normal meal in this country is just way out of whack. I can happily get a small hamburger, small fry, or just two small hamburgers with a sugary drink and be satisfied. It's plenty of calories and if you don't overeat those kinds of calories, I'd argue they are not really bad for you, relatively.
This is the same thing I do. I’ve lost almost 20 pounds since late March.
 
  • Like
Reactions: She Mate Me

Darryl Steight

Well-known member
Sep 30, 2022
1,447
2,155
113
I think everyone knew this was coming at some point, with nobody in the family willing and able to take it on. It's still a sad thing to see, though. I have probably eaten at the Crystal Grill more than any other one restaurant on the planet. You don't see to many restaurants that serve veal anymore. Their veal cutlets are probably in my top 5 favorite menu items anywhere.
With The Elite gone and now CG, Mississippi has lost its two best (only?) veal cutlet places.
 
  • Like
Reactions: She Mate Me

johnson86-1

Well-known member
Aug 22, 2012
11,994
2,189
113
That’s actually opposite of what’s happening. Anytime there is an economic disturbance, the higher price point feels it first. During the 08 crash, fast food hit record profits while high-end was decimated. Your stars are always going to be stars and can withstand a 10% drawdown through tighter budgeting but several big markets are down 20ish%.

Restaurant news ran an article in this months edition about a “steet fight” erupting is the fast food and fast casual sectors over value drivin customers ie lower income. Cliffs: 6-figure households are eating more fast food & value-driven customers have disappeared. Article had quotes from c-suite execs of Wendy’s, Applebees, & McDonalds.
The people supporting the high end places are not just six figure households. It's probably more like $500k plus households and probably higher in higher cost of living areas.

The stock market is still climbing and business profits are still pretty good, if seeing some pressure. The households established enough to have half million plus incomes were probably in their houses pre-covid run-up and at the least had the opportunity to lock down sub-3 financing. They just aren't feeling it yet unless they are in an industry that is struggling.

On the other end of the spectrum, the fast food and casual chains are fighting over customers because their traditional customers are getting hammered. The high end places are probably losing out on some customers that go there for special occasions, but as far as I can tell most of the people supporting those places are doing ok still. Seems like something similar happening with travel. I don't see a lot of screaming deals at higher endplaces, but definitely starting to see some in the midrange. This is all just anecdote and/or personal observations, so maybe not reflective of reality as a whole, but that's what it looks like in my corner of the world.
 

She Mate Me

Well-known member
Dec 7, 2008
9,131
5,503
113
With The Elite gone and now CG, Mississippi has lost its two best (only?) veal cutlet places.

We used to hit the Elite when I was a teenager, with my grandmother. She loved her some veal cutlet or Mexican enchiladas (which I don't think a Mexican would recognize as enchiladas).

She'd also abscond with extra rolls and warm them up later for a snack.

I'm sure there are at least a few restaurants around still serving a veal cutlet, but I'd be shocked to see Veal Chop Suey on anybody's specials board.
 

DesotoCountyDawg

Well-known member
Nov 16, 2005
21,436
8,013
113
We used to hit the Elite when I was a teenager, with my grandmother. She loved her some veal cutlet or Mexican enchiladas (which I don't think a Mexican would recognize as enchiladas).

She'd also abscond with extra rolls and warm them up later for a snack.

I'm sure there are at least a few restaurants around still serving a veal cutlet, but I'd be shocked to see Veal Chop Suey on anybody's specials board.
There’s a place in Southaven that had veal cutlets. They’re in Italian dishes.
 
  • Like
Reactions: She Mate Me

leeinator

Active member
Feb 24, 2014
505
378
63
Dang.....hate to hear that. One of my all-time favorite cafes. Surely, some investor(s) out there will not let the Crystal die.
 

johnson86-1

Well-known member
Aug 22, 2012
11,994
2,189
113
Dang.....hate to hear that. One of my all-time favorite cafes. Surely, some investor(s) out there will not let the Crystal die.
Without knowing anything about Crystal's other than having been there and having been in Greenwood, I suspect the only reason the Crystal provided any kind of good living for their owners was because they had owned the building for a long time and they were involved in the business on a daily basis to try to maintain quality.

So for investors, they'd have to pay for the building and I doubt Greenwood is high on the lists of places people want to invest in a restaurant or commercial real estate. I would assume somebody will try to do the same as Lusco's and try to copy the restaurant in a new location. The person doing Lusco's is at least a family member; he may generally know their recipes and how to operate the new restaurant like Lusco's, which may make it more likely that he can capitalize on existing good will. Not sure what the family situation is for the owners of the Crystal.
 
  • Like
Reactions: She Mate Me

greenbean.sixpack

Well-known member
Oct 6, 2012
5,647
4,143
113
Without knowing anything about Crystal's other than having been there and having been in Greenwood, I suspect the only reason the Crystal provided any kind of good living for their owners was because they had owned the building for a long time and they were involved in the business on a daily basis to try to maintain quality.

So for investors, they'd have to pay for the building and I doubt Greenwood is high on the lists of places people want to invest in a restaurant or commercial real estate. I would assume somebody will try to do the same as Lusco's and try to copy the restaurant in a new location. The person doing Lusco's is at least a family member; he may generally know their recipes and how to operate the new restaurant like Lusco's, which may make it more likely that he can capitalize on existing good will. Not sure what the family situation is for the owners of the Crystal.
Johnny, the owner, is second generation. His life is that restaurant. No one would pour their soul into it like him. He often says it is a "scratch restaurant." His kids are successful in their own lives and not interested in carrying it on. Someone could buy the name and recipes and move it to Madison, but unless it was someone like Robert St. John, they wouldn't care enough about the history/quality to ensure its high standard was continued.
 

OG Goat Holder

Well-known member
Sep 30, 2022
6,791
6,412
113
Unfortunately, restaurants have been the main thing that exited my monthly budget. It's just impossible to rationalize the markup and what you spend for.......food.
 
Aug 22, 2012
845
55
28
That’s the biggest challenge in the industry rn. Covid created a labor crunch. Every CFA in the county is understaffed and some markets start at $19hr full-time. Think about it, CFA is hiring pimple faced teenagers with no experience at $15hr and can’t find enough help… Then add the insane price of food increase and there is your problem. I know the gov’t releases detailed CPI data but the food part has always been BS. Food is 20% more expensive minimum & that includes regular Joe grocery shopping. Let’s say you’re a restaurant that did $4M a year pre-covid with a $1M payroll & $1M grocery/supply bill. Now both of those cost are $1.25 & sales are down 15% so you’re doing $3.4M. That math don’t math and it ain’t mathing for many.
Saw a video on Instagram where a guy hit reorder on the Walmart app for his monthly groceries from 2020 and it went from under $200 to over $400
 

DoggieDaddy13

Well-known member
Dec 23, 2017
2,672
970
113
Unfortunately, restaurants have been the main thing that exited my monthly budget. It's just impossible to rationalize the markup and what you spend for.......food.
It's really easy to rationalize. The biggest grocery chain in America is Walmart - by far. They make it very difficult for competing chains to operate and practically impossible for smaller market chains and and locally owned grocers. They can set prices wherever they damn well please. They can use the prices to put the pinch or competitors and still turn a very handsome profit.

Like shooting fish in a barrel.

They won't bring the prices back down as long as we keep buying.

Grow your own garden and stop buying groceries you don't really need. Support your local grocer whenever possible. Of course, most Mississippians really don't shop for food outside of Walmart and Dollar General.
 
Last edited:

OG Goat Holder

Well-known member
Sep 30, 2022
6,791
6,412
113
It's really easy to rationalize. The biggest grocery chain in America is Walmart - by far. They make it very difficult for competing chains to operate and practically impossible for smaller market chains and and locally owned grocers. They can set prices wherever they damn well please. They can use the prices to put the pinch or competitors and still turn a very handsome profit.

Like shooting fish in a barrel.

They won't bring the prices back down as long as we keep buying.

Grow your own garden and stop buying groceries you don't really need. Support your local grocer whenever possible. Of course, most Mississippians really don't shop for food outside of Walmart and Dollar General.
I meant restaurants. It's literally like 4 times the cost of eating at home. It's just not something that's sustainable or practical if you're trying to save money or cut budget.
 

MSUDOG24

Member
Mar 31, 2021
399
242
43
Johnny, the owner, is second generation. His life is that restaurant. No one would pour their soul into it like him. He often says it is a "scratch restaurant." His kids are successful in their own lives and not interested in carrying it on. Someone could buy the name and recipes and move it to Madison, but unless it was someone like Robert St. John, they wouldn't care enough about the history/quality to ensure its high standard was continued.
I also wonder if at least some (if not a lot) of the appeal isn't the history and funky characteristics of "the original". Lusco's, Chrechale's, Mayflower, Beechwood, Doe's, etc. Do those pies just not taste quite as good if you're sitting in Madison in a strip mall versus downtown Greenwood.

I was going to use Doe's as an example of trying to expand and failing but I see there are a number of them scattered about. I haven't made it yet but when I go, I'm going to Greenville as much for the experience as the food. Anyone eaten at the original and one of the franchises for a comparison?