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A new restaurant with ties to a historic Texas woman aims to reinvent Southern cuisine

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Lucille B. Smith demonstrates her hot roll mix in one of the dozens of grocery stores that carried her products. Photo via Lucille's/Facebook
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Lucille Biship Smith Photo via Lucille's/Facebook
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Lucille's famous hot rolls Photo via Lucille's/Facebook
News_Lucille's_Lucille B. Smith_demonstrating hot roll mix
News_Lucille's_Lucille Biship Smith
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News_Lucille's_hot rolls

If you are looking for a solid Southern food pedigree, you can't do much better than Lucille Bishop Smith. Smith and her family owned U.S. Smith's Famous BBQ in Fort Worth, published sets of recipes, sold her hot roll mix in grocery stores and served her chili biscuits on American Airlines and to notables including Martin Luther King, Jr., and Eleanor Roosevelt, according to her great-grandson, Chris Williams.

Bishop Smith is featured in the Women In Texas History project.

Williams and his brother Ben are carrying on the family legacy with Lucille's, a restaurant opening in the Museum District near the Children's Museum. Williams says  the menu will include some of Lucille's recipes, like gingerbread waffles and the aforementioned hot rolls and chili biscuits, albeit with some 21st-century updates.

 One dish that won't be getting any adjustments is Lucille's Caesar salad, which Williams describes as one of the most inventive Caesar recipes he's ever seen. 

Williams, who will serve as executive chef, has worked in European kitchens "from London to Lithuania," and he says those European influences will be intertwined with the Southern and American cuisine he grew up eating.

One dish that won't be getting any adjustments is Lucille's Caesar salad, which Williams describes as one of the most inventive Caesar recipes he's ever seen, with basil, watercress and tarragon vinegar.

Lucille's is currently offering catering while the restaurant, housed in a building that dates back to 1923, is under construction, with an official opening planned for March. Williams says there will be a backyard garden and the potential for neighborhood cookouts and barbecues.

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