Walk into the Crossroads Grill and Cafe, tucked away at the corner of Flat Shoals and Ga. Highway 20, and you’ll be greeted with a mouth-watering sound track of sounds. The hiss and sizzle of thick, hand-shaped hamburger patties on the grill and jumbo-wings in the fryer serve as a backdrop to the comfortable banter of regulars as they catch up on their lives.
"Our customers are like family," explained manager Stephanie Hurley. "And I’m nosy so I like to know what’s going on in their lives," she said, laughing.
It’s these relationships and the finger-licking-good food that made the Crossroads Grill such a hit when it first opened in January 2007.
Owners Ken and Sheila Sipe had been thinking of opening their own business for quite some time, but more along the lines of something in construction.
"A restaurant was the furthest thing from my mind," said Ken Sipe, who had cooked all during his 14 years in the Navy. "Just wasn’t my cup of tea."
However, his daughter Stephanie Hurley had spent most of her working life in the food service industry and wanted to open her own wing restaurant someday. So as the construction industry in general started slowing down and her dad considered opening a restaurant instead, she was happy.
"He’s actually living my dream," she said.
Hurley said she serves her customers by following the golden rule — treat others as you would like to be treated yourself.
"You go out to a restaurant for three different reasons: You don’t want to cook, you want to get out the house and you want to have family time together," she said. "They just want to be taken care of."
The other secret to the success of Crossroads Cafe and Grill is, of course, the food, which is made fresh to order and cooked with care and precision.
"I am known for the jumbo wings and my hamburgers," said Sipe proudly. "If I was a customer, I’d want to know I’m paying for some good, meaty chicken wings, so I’ve got jumbo wings."
"And club sandwiches to die for!" piped in a waiting customer.
Crossroads also recently started serving beer and wine coolers — the only wing restaurant to do so in Conyers and Covington, Hurley pointed out.
Other changes include the recently extended business hours: 11 a.m. to 8 p.m. Mondays through Thursdays, 11 a.m. to 9 p.m. on Fridays, and 11 a.m. to 7:30 p.m. on Saturdays.
Eventually, Sipe hopes to expand with another room where customers can go to relax and watch football on a wide screen TV or hold karaoke nights.
Hurley said a customer described the restaurant as "the best kept secret in Conyers that can’t be kept secret anymore."
"It’s all about family," Sipe said. "Come let our family serve your family."
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