The Old Coupland Inn and Dance Hall is putting out the Welcome mat again when it comes to Texas music and home cooking, but with a new host, Abbey Road, previously event manager and talent buyer for Threadgill’s and the legendary Luckenbach, and former On Air Personality at Sun radio and KOKE FM.
The Southern Pride mesquite wood barbecue pit is firing up once more with Abbey Road as pitmaster, one of her many passions, and one of many hats worn in her new role as owner, music booker, manager, sometimes food runner and grill supervisor, and bed & breakfast host. In the 1970’s people flocked to Coupland from all over Texas for the barbecue, and now they’re coming back, but not just for the brisket, sausage, pork ribs and pulled pork, but for the hand cut and hand breaded fried-to-order chicken fried steak, (with bacon gravy),ribeye steaks and Southern fried catfish lightly tossed in cornmeal. Cobbler, smothered green beans and hand mashed potatoes made fresh daily round out the menu. “I want people to eat great food and feel like they are sitting in their friend’s dining room,” said Abbey. “And every Friday, Saturday and Sunday, I am inviting people into my house.”
Abbey was inspired in the kitchen by her Midwestern grandma, an award winning cook, who attracted folks from all over just to sit and dine at her table. On their Ohio farm, Abbey says she saw life in its full circle, “Everything that is good about me I learned from the dairy farm.”
Abby’s passion for music also started with her grandparents. Abbey also spent time in Texas with her family, in the suburbs of Houston, where she discovered Waylon and Willie, Loretta, the Highway Men and Conway Twitty, soaking up everything the radio was playing at the time. Abbey also caught Johnny Cash at the Texas Prison Rodeo in Huntsville, “Everyone played that rodeo,” she says, “so outlaw and so rebel, but I had no idea at the time!”
The Coupland Dance Hall building began life in 1904 as the Coupland Drug Company, and in 1910 the adjoining Coupland Tavern was built, known throughout the state as the place where pun-offs were held on a quarterly basis. Years later the building housed a newspaper called the Coupland World Globe News. In March of 1992, owners Barbara and Tim Worthy converted the former Speckles Grocery into a Texas-sized (7,000 plus square foot) dance hall, named it Coupland Dance Hall & Tavern and cranked up the barbecue pit once more. In June 2017, The Worthy’s retired and sold it all to Abbey who with her incredible music background and the respect of her industry, not to mention her passion for real home cooking and hospitality, desired to bring Coupland back to its dance hall glory days all the while keeping its precious memories and magic alive.
Dinner at Coupland Inn is served Friday and Saturday 5.30 – 10 PM & Sunday Brunch 11 AM – 2 PM (till the food runs out!)