McAlister’s and Graeter’s bring buzz to Chevy Chase area

By Chase Fairchild

McAlister’s and Graeter’s have had an impact on more than just their customers. While the restaurants have been experiencing success in their new locations, local businesses have been enjoying the increased foot traffic the two stores bring to the area as well.


The location on the corner of Euclid and High has been occupied by many different companies, but none of them ever really stuck. This is until a group of investors got together and brought the famous McAlister’s deli to Lexington.

This is the first McAlister’s to open in the Lexington area, but not the last. The investment group intends on expanding in Central Kentucky with an overall goal of having six stores, according to Jason Nickel, the restaurants general manager.

Nickel said that their store prides themselves on customer service and how they attempt to optimize the customers dining experience.

Known for their “World Famous Sweet Tea” McAlister’s is also known for having incredible menu items, such as the stuffed spud, a potato filled with various toppings.

The general response during the opening months was very positive. “It was overwhelming. The first month of business for us was crazy, we only have 100 seats, but during the lunch rush we were packing out at around 140 people at a time” Nickel said.

Curt Vernon, 28, is a fan of the popular deli, and a regular customer. “McAlister’s is to the Lexington restaurant scene what Anthony Davis has been to Kentucky Basketball, redemption,” Vernon said.

In addition, you can try the Southwest Chicken Griller or the Reuben sandwich.

“We are happy to be a member of the Chevy Chase area and are very glad to be here” Nickel said.


Right next door to McAlister’s is another local favorite, Graeter’s ice cream.

Graeter’s ice cream parlor returned to Lexington with an overwhelming response from the public. Since all of the stores had left town, there had been a desire to bring the franchise back to Lexington. Graeter’s reopened in March and according to Shawn Rose, a Graeter’s employee, the response has been fabulous.

According to Rose, there has been a constant rush and people have been overwhelmingly supportive of their business. The store has been well received by other shops in the Chevy Chase area.

Black raspberry chip tends to be the most popular flavor ice cream. “Every time I get to eat black-raspberry-chip my day gets a little bit better” Brenn Arbra, 20, said.

“We are just glad to be back, the response from our customers has been outstanding,” Rose said. The Lexington public will be pleased during these upcoming summer months to be able to get a cold ice cream treat.