Loyalty. It’s not just for Facebook fans!
Real friends show up in person!
Al “Bubba” Baker found that out big-time Monday night as a Cleveland Browns reunion was held as part of the kick-off to his retail ribs venture with Heinen’s.
The event took pace at Baker’s popular Avon restaurant, Bubba’s Q, located on Route 83 just south of the railroad tracks.
“Do you believe this!” exclaimed Bubba as he welcomed former Browns greats like Dick Ambrose, Kevin Mack, Reggie Langhorne, Cleo Miller and others. “This is just tremendous. Seven years with these guys and they are all here. That just says so much!”
The party launched Baker’s deal with Heinen’s, which now carries Bubba’s-Q Mild BBQ sauces at all its stores and Bubba’s-Q patented D-boned Baby Back Rib Steak at five pilot locations. It also marked the 7th anniversary of Bubba’s Q Restaurant in Avon.
“This is the beginning of an exciting retail venture,” reported Johnny L. Hutton, Jr., Vice President of Jumpstart, a Cleveland-based nonprofit that specializes in accelerating the growth of entrepreneurs.
“Bubba is just a perfect fit for the entrepreneurial venture. He in an ‘all-in’ personality totally committed to the success of this product. His d-boned ribs, we feel, are a perfect example of a commercial product that can be successfully translated to the retail market.”
Bubba has teamed with Heinen’s to prepare his user-friendly ‘heat and eat’ ribs at the Heinen’s headquarters located in Warrensville Hts.
“They have been just super to work with. We couldn’t do it without their support,” said Baker. “I am totally excited about this opportunity and I am very grateful to be part of their tremendous organization.”
“Heinen’s is rolling out the product at five if its 17 stores as we fine-tune the operation,” said Hutton. “It is one step at a time, and very important that we do it right. So this launch is just the beginning of our evolution as a product, its marketing, its packaging and advertising. We just know that the excellence that Bubba’s patented de-boned ribs product makes it an ideal candidate for the retail market. It is delicious and easy to prepare.”
Heinen’s of Rocky River is one of the five pilot stores to carry Bubba’s patented d-boned ribs for now. The others are Heinen’s of Mayfield Village, Bainbridge, Mentor and Brecksville.
Fans of the ribs will be able to buy them at the store, heat in microwave or oven, and top with Bubba’s-Q sauce for a great heat and eat meal.
Baker shared hugs and handshakes with his former Browns teammates as they entered the room and sat down to a sumptuous buffet of Bubba’s-Q menu favorites. Cleo Miller autographed one of the authentic Browns lockers that sit at the entrance of the restaurant. Felix Wright, Hanford Dixon and Frank Stams renewed friendships. In the back party room of the sports-themed restaurant, Dick Ambrose, Cleo Miller, Dan Fike and Kevin Mack shared food and laughs with even the likes of Plain Dealer reporters Elton Alexander and Bill Livingston, proving that you can forgive – but it’s better if you don’t forget when sportswriters are concerned – otherwise you won’t have anything to laugh about years later!
Loyalty! It’s not just for fans of Facebook! It’s better if you show up in person!