By Troy Belton
Jodie’s is a quaint, little breakfast and lunch spot with a six-stool counter inside and two tables outside if the weather’s nice.
Despite the small capacity seating and appearance, there is a steady stream of patrons who wait patiently for the hearty and crispy hash brown potatoes, hot, creamy grits and pancakes so tasty you really don’t need syrup.
Located at 902 Masonic Ave. in Albany, tucked away under the BART overpass, Jodie’s serves the best greasy spoon, stick-to-your-ribs style food you’ll ever have the pleasure of eating.
Owner Jodie Royston lives by the words: “It’s Better to Serve One Person Ten Times Than to Serve Ten Persons Once,” and Royston has been serving his faithful regulars for 24 years.
His grandson Charles Garrison does most the cooking now, with customers having the pleasure of receiving down-home meals from two family chefs. It’s definitely a family affair.
Longtime customers still mourn the loss of Royston’s legendary dish, his “Famous Fried Chicken, which was removed from the menu in May 2011.
The loss is attributed to a Health Department official disguised as a customer who discovered Royston was prepping the meat at home because of the limited space in the 200-square-foot restaurant.
Following this violation of health department and building code standards, there was a domino effect of this unfortunate circumstance, resulted in the immediate demand to improve or replace the overhead air hood, fire suppression system, replace the flooring, windows, doors, counters, shelves, work areas and add additional sinks.
Royston says he’s on the lookout for a new location — one with space for a prep kitchen, but not so big that the restaurant will lose the homey charm that has won over so many repeat customers.
Jodie’s is like the “Cheers” of the neighborhood and is extremely popular in the Albany community. This establishment can use some financial support from local banking institutions or from an angel investor.
It’s evident that Jodie’s has become one of Albany’s favorite gathering places for seniors and community residents.
One thing for sure is that Jodie’s new location would not only continue to help build the Albany area in a very positive way, but will also offer an excellent return on investment for any potential investor.
If you care to open your heart to help, feel free to visit their website at www.jodiesrestaurant.comto see the restaurant’s awards, testimonials, photos, media articles and television broadcasts. Or call (510) 526.1109 for directions to this local treasure.