...On March 14 and March 29, 2003, Ben & Jerry’s co-founder Jerry Greenfield, Oberlin College class of ‘73, executed two $20,000 promissory notes to Phil B. Davis, Phil the Fire's flamboyant proprietor, at prime plus 200 basis points, collateralized by an equity
stake in Phil the Fire. Mr. Davis, a former deodorant salesman, failed
to make a single payment on the bargain-rate loans. On October 31,
2003, the well-heeled ice cream czar and the wannabe waffle king
consummated a Halloween wing-and-a-prayer loan consolidation through a
$100,000 line of credit issued by Shore Bank. Mr. Davis subsequently
defaulted on every facet of the original loans.
According to Cuyahoga County Court records, Phil the Fire’s tax returns, prepared
by leading public accounting firm SS & G, show a loss of nearly
$50,000 in 2002. In an amended July 19, 2004, brief attached to the
extensive litigation spawned by Phil the Fire’s demise, Phil B. Davis
declares on line #93, "Defendant never claimed that the operations of
Phil the Fire on Shaker Square had yielded a profit after its first
year of operations." The Ohio Department of Taxation affixed eight
liens totaling $69,555.63 to Phil the Fire’s Shaker Square carcass. The
Ohio Bureau of Workers Compensation weighed in with unpaid claims of
Mr. Davis’ Shaker Square operation inherited the retail storefront formerly occupied by Hungarian strudel purveyor Lucy’s Sweet Surrender, a 49-year Buckeye neighborhood fixture employing a bevy of elderly, veteran strudel kneaders. On assuming the balance
of Lucy’s ten-year lease, Mr. Davis seized $75,000 in specialized bakery equipment belonging to Lucy’s proprietor Michael Feigenbaum. Lucy’s never fully recovered and, according to Mr. Feigenbaum’s Hotel Bruce web posting, is "living on fumes."
On Sunday, March 26, 2006, the Cleveland Plain Dealer ran a front-page
expose detailing the implosion of both the Shaker Square and downtown
Phil the Fire and Waterhouse Restaurants, established with the
financial backing of fugitive Atlanta hedge fund manager Kirk Wright.
I, not any member of this body [Oberlin City Council], was the original
source for that story.
Wanted on state and federal mail and securities fraud warrants for allegedly absconding with $185 million in investor assets, Wright targeted novice minority investors,
particularly professional athletes with significant discretionary
income. Equipped, according to the New York Post, with "a materialistic
streak that would make Madonna blush," Wright’s illicitly acquired auto
collection included a Bentley, a Jaguar, an Aston Martin, a BMW and a
Lamborghini. A March 9, 2006, Wall Street Journal article reported Mr.
Wright’s financial seductions occurred in "suites he rented at Atlanta
Falcon football games." Since February 2002, SCA’s financial patron,
Home Depot co-founder Arthur Blank, has owned the Atlanta Falcons.
According to Phil B. Davis’ Cuyahoga County court filings, Davis "met
twice with Wright in Plaintiff’s Atlanta office."
In a short, tumultuous five-month life-span, Phil the Fire’s illiquid downtown
Cleveland gravy train racked up well in excess of a million dollars in
unpaid debts and forfeitures — including over $15,000 in Ohio workers
compensation liens — was on a C.O.D. basis with vendors and, according
to Phil Davis’ July 28, 2004, court filings, had a chronic negative
cash flow. Channel 19 reporter Scott Taylor ran an investigative piece
broadcast March 14, 2004, on Phil the Fire Gateway’s imminent meltdown.
On March 23, 2004, the IRS slapped a $226,259 tax lien on Phil the Fire
for failure to pay federal withholding taxes. On April 15, 2004, Phil
the Fire employees picketed outside the swank downtown eatery to
protest their untendered paychecks. Although Phil Davis’ initial
capital contribution to the Gateway Phil the Fire restaurant was a
nominal $100, as set forth in the operating agreement, Mr. Davis
retained a 60% ownership stake. On March 31, 2004, as the downtown Phil
the Fire hemorrhaged cash and the chickens came home to roost, Mr.
Davis borrowed $20,000, via a promissory note, from Phil the Fire’s
talented chef, Alexander Daniels. Despite receiving $50,000 from Mr.
Wright on April 26, 2004, in an impetuous, global out-of-court
settlement, Mr. Davis defaulted on the bulk ($15,000) of Mr. Daniels’
unsecured loan and a contracted $11,000 culinary consultant’s fee...
As a child of the southeast fairly new to the southwest I didn't know it was possible to find good fried chicken out here. My grandmother in Georgia used to serve fried chicken and waffles for Sunday breakfast and I know for sure she'd never been to LA.
Agreed about Nexus. Best fried chicken I've ever had. We went to Frank's a couple weekends ago and my companions assured me that Frank's was even better than Nexus (I've been tinkering with a gluten free diet recently so I could not partake).
I haven't had the craving in a while, but yeah, Frank's looks dang good.
I had them tonight at the Standard Diner on Central in EDO.
"chicken & waffles
blue corn waffle/piñon crusted chicken breast/bacon-apple hash/maple syrup 14.75"
They also have them at Tia Betty Blue's on San Mateo & Ross SE
Alas, Rodeo Diner is no more. The NE Heights Range Cafe moved in there (4401 Wyoming Blvd NE)