A Soda City staple, Rambo’s Fat Cat Biscuits, recently opened its brick-and-mortar location in the Cottontown neighborhood near the BullStreet District.
The now-restaurant began its story in 2018, when husband and wife team Todd and Renee Adams noticed a gap in Soda City Market’s food offerings.
“There's a ton of good food out there, but there really wasn't much breakfast food ... [There are] a lot of burgers, a lot of sandwiches, a lot of this and that and a lot of Latin food," Todd Adams said. “We saw that as an opportunity to fill a void."
Biscuits for breakfast in the South — what could be a more perfect pairing? And just like that, Rambo’s Fat Cat Biscuits was born.
Shortly after appearing at Soda City, Adams said he knew he had done something right.
“It took three, four weeks in, we started noticing that we had a damn good line, all the time,” Adams said.
First-year biochemistry student Emma Mason was drawn in by the line at Rambo’s Fat Cat Biscuits.
“I saw there was a pretty long line and I was like, 'Hey, this place has biscuits, it looks pretty good,” Mason said. “The first time I went, my roommate was with me, and we both got biscuits ... We both just loved our biscuits, so we kind of like, made it a tradition to go back together.”
As a Georgia native, Mason knows a good biscuit. She said she always orders the spicy bacon, egg and cheese biscuit with a side of cheesy hashbrown bake.
“I went [to Rambo’s] once, and then it just became my favorite food place at Soda City,” Brown said. “Like, I wanted to try new stuff, but I just kept coming back because I knew it was always going to be good.”
Opening a brick-and-mortar restaurant was the next step for the husband and wife team. But it is no easy feat: There are loans to apply for and a building to lease. The Adams took their time with the process to ensure everything went right.
All of their plans fell into place just as the pandemic began.
“Basically, the nation went on lockdown, what, about the end of February?" Todd Adams said. “We signed our lease to take over the building two weeks after that.”
The early stages of the pandemic were full of confusion and uncertainty, but that wasn’t going to stop the Adams from opening their dream restaurant.
“At the time, we obviously didn’t think that this was going to stretch out for a calendar year,” Todd Adams said. “We just kept on going with it.”
Pressing forward meant the business model would have to change to meet COVID-19 guidelines.
“In a perfect situation, we can seat about 40 people; so, now we’ve got to go 50% of that,” Adams said. “So, you worry about when you're going to be able to pay the bills with that.”
Adams and the rest of his team at Rambo’s Fat Cat Biscuits pivoted to offer carry-out and delivery, something they have experience with from their Soda City Market days.
“What we've found out is that what we've lost in revenue of people eating in the restaurant is more than made up for in to-gos,” Adams said. “We're doing about three quarters of our business right now carry-out; pick-up; delivery.”
First-year global studies student Jillian Brown visited the new restaurant, getting a glimpse of what dining-in would look like.
“I really like the interior a lot; it's kind of a modern vibe,” Brown said.
A word of advice: If you're having a hard time picking a biscuit, just ask what you should get.
“The owners are really friendly,” Mason said. “One time I was like, ‘Hey do you have any good recommendations for me? Like, I'm torn between these two.’ And the owner was like, ‘Yeah, I am definitely feeling like, this biscuit vibes from you. I think you should get this biscuit today.’”
Rambo’s Fat Cat Biscuits is now selling biscuits online through ChowNow in an effort to further streamline the ordering process. Visit Rambo’s Cottontown location at 2430 Main St.