The interior of the restaurant.
Texas State Alumni to open new restaurant
Cody Taylor and chef Todd Havers, both Texas State Alumni, are joining friend and restaurant veteran Harlan Scott to open an “everyday” restaurant south of the Square in San Marcos.
Sharing a building with Hops & Grain’s much anticipated new brewery, the team is two months away from realizing the dream of Industry two years in the making. The lunch, dinner and late-night concept is meant to be a constant celebration of life in the service industry, from the decor to the glassware, right down to the menu language. The inspiration came during initial development and fundraising. “You look at our best friends, some of the most successful bars and restaurants, and they have one thing in common: The operators are loved and respected in our business, their most frequent and vocal customers are in the industry, and the industry is the foundation for their success,” Scott said.
When it came to the business plan and raising money, everyone just “opened their books” and wanted to help. “That’s when it hit us: Let’s open something our friends will love, open something they can afford, and open something that’s authentic to the industry. And what is service industry? We value hard work and taking care of one another, we eat and drink too much, and we are friendly but to a point. We are real.”
Industry is hardly just for their friends, though. Families, business folk and students who never washed dishes to pay bills will feel right at home at Industry and likely not even notice the subtle theme.
Industry guests will start their experience ordering at the counter, but the service continues at the table. According to Taylor, “Staff will be floating throughout the dining room to deliver food, taking additional orders, helping with drink refills… basically just flag us down for whatever you need, or you can still get it yourself. It’s still technically counter service, but with actual service!”
This style of service is complemented by mostly communal seating on large handmade wooden tables that spill over into the wraparound patio connecting with Hops & Grain’s tasting room, which Industry will serve as well.
The menu is centered around a Texas Live Oak smoker. “Everything that can be smoked, will be. This is key to flavor and tenderness but also makes for quick service, the key to being ‘every day.’ But we are not barbecue,” Havers said. In fact, much of the menu is decidedly healthy, like the Sweet Potato Bowl, alongside staples like Green Chile Queso and the Hops & Grain Burger. “I need to have lunch or dinner without it being my cheat meal,” Scott said. “That’s what supports an everyday spot versus the guilty special occasion.”
Taylor and Scott, lifelong friends since waiting tables together in college, always dreamed of doing a restaurant together. Taylor operated and then purchased and revitalized the Austin institution Café Josie, where he met his chef and partner, Havers. They then realized their shared connection to San Marcos and desire to come back to where it all began.
Industry is scheduled to open this summer in the Crossroads center south of the Square in San Marcos at 110 E MLK.
• Submitted by Industry San Marcos