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The Premature Demise of Foodies

by Steve Lackmeyer Published: March 7, 2014
Foodies, sans the security bars, with new signage.
Foodies, sans the security bars, with new signage.

Forgive me for the delay in getting this story out, but yes, Foodies Asian Diner in Midtown is no more. And what happened to this restaurant, at first glance, is pretty senseless.
Regular OKC Central readers might recall that I first wrote about Foodies at 1220 N Hudson and its owners, Bang Bui and Quyen Le, in November, 2011. At the time I noted how much I loved this neglected old diner. I was further impressed to discover a very likable young couple who had some incredible new recipes and twists on food to share with our community.
With some great help from the surrounding neighborhood, including the marketing and graphical genius and Midtown newcomer Brian Winkeler, the neglected little diner was transformed into something special. The diner was filling up with customers at lunch, and surviving whatever missteps the young couple made in their on again, off again experiments with expanding into breakfast service and frequent menu changes.
I knew from early conversations that the rent they were paying was unusually high. But after a year in business, the couple was doing well.
But then, suddenly, a few weeks ago, a message went out on Twitter that Quyen Le and Bang Bui were moving on to a new restaurant, OMG, on I-240 in south Oklahoma City, and that Foodies was being taken over by Deep Fork Restaurant Group veteran Josh Richardson.
Then the diner closed. Paper went up over the windows. A flurry of activity took place for about a week. And then, mysteriously, nothing.
The paper is falling off the windows. A glimpse inside shows someone gutted the place, and it is now a wreck, with no trace left of the cute, vintage style diner that once was.
I’ve not been able to locate Josh Richardson, and I’d love to hear what’s going on.
But I have heard back from Bang and Quyen.
With their lease coming to an end, they faced a big jump in their already pricey rent. So Foodies is no more, though the couple are still cooking up their great dishes at OMG. And an owner who had his first successful tenant in the diner in decades is once again left with an empty building.
by Steve Lackmeyer
Business Reporter
Steve Lackmeyer is a reporter, columnist and author who started his career at The Oklahoman in 1990. Since then, he has won numerous awards for his coverage, which included the 1995 bombing of the Alfred P. Murrah Federal Building, the city's...
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