Restaurant sign reveals latest concept

Published 12:00 am Thursday, December 2, 2021

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Many people know Alexander Kazakos as the Breakfastime guy for his work in updating and expanding the popular breakfast chain — including the one that opened several years ago in his hometown of Clemmons.

So when Kazakos was in his restaurant on Lewisville-Clemmons Road last week measuring a three-foot circle and putting his Breakfastime sign up that he had up in his office, “then it turned into Breakfastime moving,” he said. “So I got all my customers in Clemmons saying we were moving. And I was like ‘no, it’s just a measurement, nothing else.’ ”

Many had speculated that the property he purchased earlier this year on U.S. 158 in the former Cimarron Steakhouse location might become a breakfast place, but Kazakos had an idea for a different concept.

“So now I’ve got my sign up on the road, a nice sign that I paid the good money for, like now they can see what we’re doing,” he said. “It says ‘Hawgfish — BBQ Seafood Shack.’ ”

It’s always an exciting time when new restaurants come upon the scene, and this one caught my attention with the name, knowing it was barbecue and seafood — two of my favorites.

And Kazakos has already established a reputation for a quality product when he opened Breakfastime in Clemmons.

Kazakos is certainly filling a need. There are plenty of barbecue joints in Lexington but not many around here other than Little Richard’s and Real-Q. And popular fried seafood restaurants that used to dot the local landscape, such as Dockside and Libby Hill, are long gone.

I can’t wait to give it a try when it opens in January. I already knew about Hawgfish coming to town through some other contacts well before the sign went up last week but didn’t know about his other upcoming venture in Lewisville until speaking with him for this week’s front-page story on new restaurants in the area.

It’s called Shakeburger, and like the other restaurant, it’s not hard to figure out what’s on the menu. Hey, there’s never enough good places with hand-pattied Angus burgers and homemade milkshakes.

• • • • •

Like having fans in the stands again for football this fall, it was nice to have another sense of normalcy by attending the “A Carolina Christmas” production featuring the Winston-Salem Symphony.

Except for last year, when it was canceled because of the pandemic, it’s always held the weekend after Thanksgiving in the historic Reynolds Auditorium, and it was wonderful to again hear the traditional sounds of the season.

An extra bonus was also having the Camel City Jazz Orchestra on stage as part of the special night. Even Santa made an appearance.

However, we couldn’t totally escape the remnants of the way of life we’ve reluctantly become used to. Not only did we have to wear masks, which I understand with a large inside gathering, but proof of full vaccination against COVID-19 or a negative PCR lab test was also required.

Again, in the interest of health and safety, I’m fine with following the protocols. We were met before entering the building asking for documentation, which we provided.

The funny thing was that upon entrance to the beautiful auditorium, they never even asked to see our tickets.

• • • • •

When I got the news that Mike Combest was going to return to Clemmons Village Council in December, my first thought was the vital role he played in one of the most incredible examples of “our government at work” a couple of years ago when he drove to Raleigh twice — once in the wee hours of the morning — to help stop an 11th hour drop of a House bill by a local developer to de-annex property located in Clemmons.

After Combest went to Raleigh the first time to speak before the House Finance Committee, which ultimately led to the bill being pulled from consideration, Clemmons was on guard that it still could be added again.

That happened a couple of weeks later when Village Manager Scott Buffkin received an email after a council meeting from a lobbyist for the N.C. League of Municipalities, informing him the de-annexation item was on the agenda the next morning.

That came about 9:30 p.m., and Buffkin immediately called Combest, telling him of another House Finance Committee meeting scheduled less than 12 hours later at 8:30 a.m.

Combest immediately put together a short rebuttal, a slide packet for several Representatives and a plan to connect with the NCLM and any and all others who might be able to help with the cause for Clemmons.

Combest asked Buffkin to meet him a little after 4 a.m. at Town Hall to get some things printed out before hitting the road for a 6:30 a.m. arrival in Raleigh to allow for any meetings and conversations before the 8:30 a.m. start.

“It was debated for about 20 minutes, and I was allowed three minutes during the public comment period,” Combest said at the time. “They took a vote, and it failed to pass. It was 12-12. I don’t think anyone expected Clemmons to respond like we did. But the Clemmons council and staff collectively defeated this de-annexation effort. We killed House Bill 392.”

Combest, who chose not to seek re-election two years ago, will be joining the council after being nominated to fill the upcoming vacant seat of Mayor-elect Mike Rogers, who is in the middle of his four-year council term.