Daniel Leon | Editor
A new family-friendly dining experience is now open for business.
Dukes, which officially opened Aug. 11 in The Barnyard Shopping Center, brings a new environment to the Clovis dining scene as it features live music to go along with its family-style dining.
Designed to be a dinner joint, Dukes operates three days of the week – Thursday, Friday and Saturday from 4 p.m. to midnight.
According to owner Justin Dukes, the goal of opening this western-saloon style restaurant is to unite families over a meal, live music and dancing.
“I’m a chef for a living but I started cooking because all of my best memories made with my family were over a meal,” Dukes said. “So I thought, ‘I want other families to have that and I want to be able to facilitate that.’”
Dukes switches things up by putting out a new menu every week with the anticipation that it sparks curiosity among customers to have them return to see what they have to offer the following week.
“I want them to be thinking, ‘I want to go back tomorrow night, I want to go next week because I know there’s going to be different food,’” Dukes said.
Located in the same building that used to house barbeque pit after barbeque pit, Dukes enjoys the freedom of being able to switch things up and offer a rotating menu every week. It keeps things fresh and allows customers to try new food every single week.
“That’s what’s most exciting for me – to not have to do barbeque all the time,” Dukes said. “Everybody’s known this building for barbeque but to have the opportunity to showcase some different food – down-home comfort food in a western setting with live music later in the evening. We want a place where you can make memories.”
Entrees will include staples beef, pasta, chicken and pork every week with appetizers, salads, desserts and a kids menu also available. Dukes will also will also offer Southern-style fried catfish, in honor his late father’s favorite dish.
“Now I’m given the opportunity to cook a different menu and have fun with my friends and family and have a place that my dad would be proud of, that my grandma is proud of, my mom is proud of, my son is proud of,” Dukes said.
With Clovis being a Western town, Dukes wanted to incorporate that style in his restaurant and the response from the community has been rewarding.
“[The feedback] has been over the top,” Duke said. “I’m grateful that we have a place that we can come to like this because it’s never really been done – a western place in a western town that’s family friendly that you can come and have a good time. You might walk in the door after a terrible day, get to eat some awesome food, talk to some great people, dance with somebody that you care about and you leave with a big smile on your face. I’m grateful for that opportunity.”