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Troy restaurant to become Little York Tavern’s 2nd location

LeDoux’s expanding employment ahead of transition

LeDoux’s at 118 W. Main St. will close as a Cajun and seafood restaurant on May 4 but will reopen two weeks later as a franchise location of the Little York Tavern & Bar, restaurant owner Don LeDoux said Monday.

LeDoux announced on his Facebook page that his namesake restaurant “will discontinue the Cajun and seafood menu” as of May 4, close for a brief kitchen remodeling, and reopen the restaurant as Little York Tavern & Pizza Troy on May 19. The bar will remain open through the transition, LeDoux said.

LeDoux said he has known Little York Tavern owner Tom Hentrick for several years, and the franchise idea “came up in casual conversation. I think it’s a good move and the right fit.”

This will be the first franchise location for the Little York Tavern, which was founded in 1981 and which moved to its current location at 4120 Little York Road in Vandalia in 2005. Hentrick said Monday that long-term plans call for adding more franchise Little York Tavern locations in the region “if the opportunity presents itself.” He said he was impressed by LeDoux’s work ethic and entrepreneurship.

The Troy restaurant has started hiring additional staff in anticipation of the transition from a dinner-only establishment to a restaurant-bar that will be open seven days a week for lunch and dinner, LeDoux said. Employment has risen from seven to 16 people, and LeDoux said he’ll likely hire a handful more.

The Cajun-themed restaurant opened in late 2009 on North County Road 25A north of Troy near Upper Valley Medical Center. That location closed in September 2011, and the restaurant reopened at its current downtown Troy location in November 2011.

The restaurant-bar seats about 100 people in four dining areas, and also offers a banquet facility.

Attracting diners who would make frequent, recurring visits “was a tough battle” in part because of the restaurant’s Cajun-themed menu, LeDoux said. Cajun dishes have a passionate, but somewhat limited, following.

Before becoming a restaurateur, LeDoux worked in various radio positions, including as the “Prize Guy” on what was the Nancy and Kerrigan Morning Show on K99.1-FM.

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