Friday, May 16, 2008

Mr. C's

Early '60's ad for George's dad's restaurant

1968 ad for Mr. C's

1978 ad for Mr. C's Grand Central

Another 1978 ad (the "Super C" continues its popularity today at Showmar's)

1979 picture of Mr. C's Grand Central


mid-70's menu for the downtown location of Mr. C's


1978 menu for Mr. C's Grand Central

The original Mr. C's on Monroe Rd.

George (far right) with family in front of Johnny's Grill in 1953

George and wife, Helen, in the early '70's

Recent photo of George at Showmar's at the East Blvd. location


George Couchell is the "C" in Mr. C's. He has spent almost his entire life involved in Charlotte restaurants. Not only is he an American success story, he is a Charlotte success story as well.

When George was twelve, his father opened Johnny's Grill in the early '50's on Monroe Rd (an early forerunner to the famous Gus' Sir Beef). A family affair, George was the carhop and ran orders from the kitchen to awaiting cars parked at the drive-in. The restaurant was so popular, George was allowed by his school principal to leave school during the day to help at the restaurant.

With restaurants in his blood, George opened Mr. C's Southern Country Chicken on Monroe Rd. in 1967.  The restaurant was so successful with its fried chicken, fish, and pizza that he opened two more locations within the next six months. Eventually, he would also have locations in downtown, near UNCC, and (his biggest venture) a full sit-down restaurant near Eastland Mall.

In the early '80's, with diners looking for more healthy alternatives, George overhauled his UNCC location and revamped the menu and gave the eatery a new name--Showmar's (named after his bookkeeper). Showmar's continues to grow to this day and currently has over twenty locations throughout Charlotte and its neighboring communities. George has found a niche with Showmar's by offering a bridge between fast food and full-service restaurants. Showmar's menu includes many items made famous at Mr. C's along with Greek specialities and their famous pita burgers and sandwiches. 

REVISIONS-- 8-2-2008

1975 photo of the UNCC location

1975 ad


REVISIONS -- 8/9/2008

1976 photo of the entrance inside the Northwestern Bank Building


2 comments:

  1. I love Mr. C's on Monroe, but it now has a new name. Is it still owned by George Couchell?

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  2. There was also a Mr. C's located on The Plaza just south of Matheson Ave. that we used to go to in the late '60s and early '70s, (which has been closed for a long time), and there's still the one on Hwy 29 just down from Northeast Medical Center in Concord.
    I was pleased when I found out that Mr. C's was still there on Monroe Rd. when I worked in the area in the mid-to-late 90s, and went there several times as time allowed.
    Still as good as I remembered growing up!

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