Circle II Restaurant grows by exceeding expectations

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ELIZABETH CITY — Thomas Jones is the current operator of the Circle II Restaurant on Hughes Boulevard. His business has grown in less than nine months by a combination of hard work, long hours, attention to detail and exceeding customer expectations in every way.

But this has not been the case until just recently, when he finally dug his way out of a deep hole that he inherited from the previous owners.


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Thomas has worked a number of jobs over the span of his adult life, many of them in the restaurant business working for other people and being the man behind the scenes that few people ever saw. He has worked in grocery stores, convenience stores, hotels and various odd jobs — all of which dealt with customer service in one way or another. Along the way, he has learned how to listen to customers and to provide them with a product or service, or both, that meets or exceeds their expectations.

Over the years, he has worked with Bob Carson who previously owned Bob B Que on Griffin Street in Elizabeth City and he has also worked with Bob at The Pines Country Club restaurant, while also working for him at the BBQ location at the same time.

The Circle II Restaurant was originally owned by a gentleman, known locally as Big Daddy. When he wanted to open a new location on Weeksville Road, Big Daddy was approached by one of his former employees.

That was the first in a quartet of different owners, all of whom encountered difficulties.

Fortunately for Thomas and for Big Daddy, a negotiated a lease / purchase is now in effect and the restaurant has returned to profitability.

When Thomas first took over, he retained some existing employees – who have become exceedingly loyal to the new owner! Although the trusts these people explicitly, Thomas knows that in order to maintain good customer service he needs to be in the restaurant as much as possible, sometimes working as much as 100 hours per week.

The result is a growing business and a growing clientele, which numbers approximately 100 on an average day. Customer count each day has remained steady for the last couple of months!

Now that he has achieved profitability, Thomas is looking forward to continuing to grow the business and providing a good quality product at an affordable price along with a clean establishment.

Most customers order the $7.99 buffet Monday through Saturday. The Super Buffet on Sunday is much larger in scope with only a modest price increase to $10.99. Each buffet encompasses a salad bar, several types of meats and vegetables, often features soups, and always sports a tantalizing dessert bar.

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Again, the only difference between the Daily and the Sunday buffets is that the latter is much larger in terms of the number of choices that are available.

A different entree is featured on the buffet throughout the week as follows:

Monday-Meatloaf

Tuesday- Chicken and pastry, aka chicken and dumplings

Wednesday- Ham and Cabbage

Thursday- Hamburger Steak

Friday-Fish

Saturday-BBQ

Sunday- Super Buffett

Circle II hours are 5:30 to 9 Monday thru Thursday; 5:30 to10 Friday and Saturday; and Sunday from 5:30 to 3. If you want good food and are in Elizabeth City at almost any hour of the day or night, we encourage you to check out the Circle II. You won’t be disappointed.

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