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Southwest Louisville staple Babie Bac'z announces closure

The community has learned one of its most beloved restaurants will closed due to unforeseen circumstances.

LOUISVILLE, Ky. — The community has learned its losing one of its beloved food spots, after Babie Bac’z Good Grill announced its six year run was coming to an end, October 16.

The family-owned restaurant opened in a shack off Terry Road and West Pages Lane in 2016, born out of a bond the Payne family shared for "good food, cooked with love, integrity and dedication,” as owner Dewayne Payne said.

Payne, alongside his mother and father, outgrew its original space 10-months after opening, and moved into what was its latest location, just feet away.

As stated on the Babie Bac’z website, “[It took] pride in preparing delightful smoked meats from original BBQ methods practiced for over 20 years. Our goal is to ‘feed you like family.’”

Dewayne Payne said the restaurant got off to a fast start: something his family wasn’t expecting.

“There was no looking back,” Payne said.”It just became absolutely magical. It was promising."  

Soon after, the restaurant was flooded with hundreds of customers a day, received raving reviews from local news outlets and even received a feature on the Food Network.

The momentum, though, came to a screeching holt in 2020, with an all too common story for small businesses like Payne’s.

“2020 was, 2020 was the biggest experience I ever went through,” Payne said. “Not just for the restaurant but in life.”

Just before the pandemic hit, Payne’s father became sick in the fall of 2019. On top of navigating Covid-borne issues like supply disruptions and decreased demand, Payne would also be forced to take on the role of caregiver, for his father.

From 2020 through spring of 2022, Payne put the restaurant, now run by him and his mother, on the backburner, until his father passed away April 29.

“April 29, is when I realized that nothing is promised,” Payne said.. “I lost my best friend, my business partner. I lost my father.”  

Mourning his father and business, Payne saw a dreaded choice was looming.

Payne said the breaking point came last week, when his mom went into work and found things were missing. 

“The door was pried open,” Payne said. “All of our things [were] gone. Over $5,000 worth of equipment.”          

Payne doesn't know quite what's next, but he does have a message for the community supporting him.

"I want to still be able to be there for that next person,” I know you love Babie Bac’z and I want to keep Babie Bac'z around.”       

Payne said it's not goodbye, just a simple “see you later.” He said his hope is to open a food truck, eventually, bearing the same Babie Bac’z name. 

The Payne family has started a GoFundMe, which you can check out here if you'd like to support them.

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