A new restaurant and bar off Highway 6 near Oxford offers a country alternative to the Square venues.
Mr. Feather’s Honky Tonk Tavern opened mid-August and is becoming increasingly popular with locals and college students.
Steve Westbrook, the original owner of the building, sold it to Scott Michael, owner of Rooster’s Blues House. Rooster’s is a blues bar on the Oxford Square that Michael opened in 2008 after selling his security business in 2006.
Rooster’s got its name from Michael’s college nickname “Rooster T. Feathers.” He named the new establishment Mr. Feather’s after taking it over.
“I like to take advantage of a good opportunity,” said Michael. “I wasn’t exactly planning on opening up another venue, but the opportunity presented itself, so I took it.”
Because Rooster’s has always been a blues bar, Michael wanted Mr. Feather’s to have a honky tonk atmosphere with live country music.
Zack Clolinger, Roosters’ manager and co-owner, began working with Michael because his brother Aaron, was one of Rooster’s first bouncers.
“I wanted to get involved because of my brother, and I’m so grateful to be a part of the Rooster’s family,” said Clolinger. “I’m so happy to have the opportunity to help Mr. Feather’s grow in success.”
Before opening Mr. Feathers, Michael and Clolinger worked with Jared Foster, owner of Landshark Crawfish.
“I knew Jared as a friendly competitor, and we knew that if we combined our business experience, Mr. Feather’s could be very successful,” said Michael.
Foster and his employees joined the Rooster’s family working in the kitchen. They work at Mr. Feather’s and at Rooster’s.
“It’s been a very positive thing, and Mr. Feather’s has exceeded all of our expectations,” said Michael.
Foster manages the kitchen and shares his own recipes and ideas.
Mr. Feather’s restaurant offers a variety of Southern food, such as uptown shrimp, catfish and landshark bites. It also offers the traditional steak, cheeseburgers and salads.
The restaurant portion is open until 9 p.m. Then Mr. Feather’s turns into a bar. Popular for its unique-to-the-area environment and ‘off the Square prices,’ Mr. Feather’s offers drinks and entrees for a lower price than most restaurants on the Square.
On Sundays, they offer half-priced steaks, and they’re adding more seafood specials to the menu.
“I drive to the coast every Thursday morning to get fresh seafood,” said Foster. “Our steaks have been a huge hit, and I have high expectations for our seafood specials.”
“One of the best things about Mr. Feather’s is the fact it’s a great place for families to bring their kids for lunch or dinner, but it’s also a safe, fun place for college kids to hang out on the weekends,” said Michael. “We genuinely care about our customers and we want them to feel comfortable and satisfied.”
Mr. Feather’s has a spacious indoor and outdoor area with an accessible bar for parties and events. Greek life organizations at the university, local businesses and families have contacted Mr. Feather’s to rent the space for their functions and events.
Mr. Feather’s is the only honky tonk bar in the Oxford area, although it shares some of the same characteristics as Rooster’s. Local country bands contact Michael to play on Friday and Saturday nights, or he contacts them.
“Oxford needed a place like this,” said Ole Miss student Mary Clare Ganucheau. “I feel like it suits the town perfectly, and it’s a nice change from the Square.”
Michael and his team have many plans for Mr. Feather’s. They’re thinking of adding a mechanical bull one night per week because they believe it would be popular with college students. They also plan to add more options and specials to the menu.
In the spring, they want to lay concrete outside to provide outdoor dining. Spring in Oxford is also known as crawfish season. Starting around February, Foster plans to use Landshark Crawfish to provide crawfish for cook-outs during the day with live music.
“I really think our business will continue to grow based on the success we have already had,” said Michael. “We all work very well together, and we truly are a family.”
Mr. Feather’s is open 4 p.m. to 1 a.m. on Thursdays and Fridays, 11 a.m. to 12 a.m. on Saturdays, and until 8 p.m. on Sundays, with live country music on Friday and Saturday nights, and sometimes Sunday evenings.