‘Quality food for a good price’

‘Quality food for a good price’
March 24
13:44 2021

It has always been Lee Price’s dream to own his own restaurant. When he was in the sixth grade, he was given an assignment to write about what he wanted to be when he grew up. “I said I wanted to manage and run my own restaurant … when I read it out loud to the class, a few people laughed. But I didn’t care, that’s what I wanted to do,” he said. 

Last week Price’s dream became reality when Papa Lee’s Grill opened at 2600 New Walkertown Road.

Price, 52, started cooking when he was only eight years old and has more than 30 years of experience working in fast food at McDonald’s and Bojangles. Although he retired in 2017, Price said when he was presented with the opportunity to open his own restaurant, he couldn’t pass it up. He said although he had his doubts in the beginning, after receiving encouraging words from several close friends, including his pastor, Bishop Willie David Sr., he decided to follow his dream. 

He reached out to Goler Community Development Corporation about the property on New Walkertown Road and things just started to fall in place.

“My pastor really encouraged me. He said, ‘You can do this, you know the business and you can handle it.’” Price continued, “So me and my wife sat down, counted up the cost and it was really more than we had, but we still decided to do it. We worked by faith … faith is the substance of things hoped for – Hebrews 11:1. And I live by that and that’s how we got to where we are today.”

Papa Lee’s Grill officially opened on Monday, March 15, and has seen a steady flow of customers since the grand opening. The first customer Price and his team served was Winston-Salem City Councilwoman Annette Scippio, who represents the East Ward where the restaurant is located.

“Councilwoman Scippio was the first person to walk through my door and she doesn’t know how good that made me feel. Just knowing that I have her support means a lot,” Price said.

Price said he wants Papa Lee’s to be the go-to restaurant in the East Ward and for families across the city. “I want this to be a restaurant in the East Winston community that people are proud to come to,” he said.

Some of the favorites on the menu so far are the chicken wings and Papa Lee’s Big Bubba Cheeseburger, a half-pound double cheeseburger with the works. 

The menu also includes a host of other burgers, turkey burgers, a barbecue sandwich, hot dogs, chicken tenders, salads, tacos, ice cream cones, sundaes, a kid’s menu, and more, all for a reasonable price. Price also mentioned plans to add a breakfast menu in the near future.

“We’re trying to give people good quality food for a good price. I think our prices are a good value for what you’re getting,” Price continued. “I’ve had some people tell me my prices were too low, but I told them they aren’t too low because I want to support the community and I want the community to support me.”

When asked what sets Papa Lee’s apart from other restaurants in the area, Price said, “Our customer service is above and beyond any customer service you will find anywhere in this city or outside this city.

“I’ve worked in Tennessee, South Carolina, and in Virginia, and given talks on customer service when I was with Bojangles and it’s something that has to be in you. So when I interview my employees, I look for those skills in people. When a customer walks into Papa Lee’s, the community can expect to receive quality food and excellent customer service.”

Papa Lee’s Grill is open for dine-in and take-out Monday through Saturday from 11 a.m. to 8 p.m. For more information or to see a full menu, visit “Papa Lee’s Grill” on Facebook.

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Tevin Stinson

Tevin Stinson

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