Hi everyone! Welcome to the inaugural musings from me, “The General” as my friends call me, but most of you will know me as Chris Corrigan, founder and CEO of The Lancaster Co., which includes The Lancaster Smokehouse, Crumb Bakehouse (launching early 2018), Lancaster Catering & Events, and formerly Hog Tails BBQ- where it all began.
So how did I get my nickname and how does it coincidently come to be that it’s the same as another more famous Bridgeport resident? (Who just had a movie made about him)
Well, the first part is easy as it dates back over 30 years ago and was dropped on me by my good friend Steve Robb, who is a retired Waterloo Region Police Officer. We used to go on annual golfing trips to Myrtle Beach- long before the restaurant business and when I had time (LOL). It was on one of those trips that I chipped out of a sunken sand bunker up on to the green, and having spent some time in the Canadian Army in my younger years, had to climb out of the bunker, barrel rolled on to the green and marched across it with my club under my arm like a pace stick, drill sergeant style, Steve says, “Hey he looks like a General!”- and it has stuck ever since!
Many of you may know that we owned a small BBQ joint on the west side of Waterloo named Hog Tails BBQ before opening The Lancaster Smokehouse. The story of how Hog Tails came to be will be the subject of another blog. Suffice to say within 2 years we were busting at the seams in Waterloo and made the decision to “go big or go home”! It was while we were searching for a new location that my wife Cathy suggested the old Lancaster Tavern.
We had not been inside “The Lanc” in over 20 years! My father used to take me there to drink 25 cent draft beers when I was underage. I bought Cathy her first legal drink there back when the age of majority was 18. We used to frequent The Lanc and The Ocean Queen room upstairs way back when. When she suggested it, we had no idea who owned it or what state it was in. Only that it was still there and still had the old boat sign outside. So… we creeped it! We would drive by at different times of the day to see what was going on. Meanwhile my commercial Realtor found out who owned it and made contact. Low and behold he was willing to entertain us!