Sam’s Southern Eatery Opens in old Hickory House location

Whatever New Year’s Resolutions you came up with to work on your diet, you should probably abandon all hope.

Or at the very least, find a way to work in Sam’s Southern Eatery, because chances are, you’re going to be coming here often.

The southern and Cajun food chain, which opened in 2019 on Highway 97 just outside downtown Sapulpa, has relocated to the former site of the Hickory House BBQ on Mission Street.

Owner Said “Sammy” Jaraba says he spent tens of thousands of dollars renovating the space to get it ready for opening, and it shows.

Frequent Hickory House diners will notice the changes immediately, because though a lot of the seating has remained, a lot has changed, as well.

“We put in a new floor, added more lights, added all the artwork on the walls,” Jaraba said.

They retained some of the old items in Hickory House—a wall adorned with license plates, for example—and the people.

This wall of license plates harkens back to the days of the building at Hickory House BBQ.

Megan, a waitress who worked at Hickory House for 13 years, said she’s pleased with the changes. “It’s a lot more open, and a lot brighter,” she said.

A new floor is one of the biggest changes at the new Sam’s Southern Eatery, which opened this week.

“The menu is the same (as the other location), but they’re going to be adding barbecue.”

Jaraba was almost as excited about the coming culinary updates as he was about the new location.

“We’re going to have barbecue, we’re going to have hummus, cabbage rolls, and tabouleh,” he said, a direct response to the recent closing of Freddie’s BBQ and Steakhouse just down the street.

Maybe the most significant change to the existing menu are the burgers, which are now charcoal grilled. The taste and texture was fantastic on the one we had on Thursday. Biting into that juicy burger, one thought came to mind: if I were on a diet, it would be doomed.

The rest of the menu will largely stay the same—Po’ Boys Sandwiches, Seafood, Chicken and family dinners. Diners are encouraged to save room for dessert, particularly their new fried pies or cheesecake bites.

As to the new location, Jaraba says being on the Mother Road will be a game-changer for the restaurant. You can already see it in the branding.

“We are excited about being on Route 66,” he said. “We have been here four years now, we’re committed to serving Sapulpa. I’m hoping my grandchildren will be serving Sapulpa in this restaurant,” he said.

Sam’s Southern Eatery is now open from 10 am to 9 pm every day but Sunday, where the hours are 11 am to 8 pm.