Jalapeno Tree owner expects summer opening
The recent placing of a sign in a window of the building at 416 East Broad Street is an affirmation of the Jalapeno Tree restaurant coming to Mineola and the company co-owner has provided details.
Paul Bambrey is owner of the restaurant company with Mark Parmerlee. He said Friday, “We’d like to be open by May but we’ll see how things go.” His partner, Parmerlee, is master franchise owner of Golden Chick.
“When you remodel an old building, you never know what you might or might not get into.” He said they will spend $500,000 to $600,000 on remodeling the property they bought from the Stewart family. Bambrey has also purchased the property behind GEMCO car lot from Mack Coker to ensure plenty of parking at the restaurant.
At this point, an asbestos abatement is scheduled for next week and could take five to eight days.
There are 14 Jalapeno Tree restaurants, and Bambrey, a native of Scottsdale, Pennsylvania, and Tyler resident, was asked why he wanted to come to Mineola.
“I just think it’s a great market. I think it has a huge potential.” He said they have found great success in the smaller markets.
But first there is an 8,000-square-foot building to remodel and employees to hire. The building is the former location of the old Medicine Chest pharmacy and much longer ago, Safeway grocery store.
Bambrey said when he renovated the old Golden Corral for his Tyler restaurant it was done in four months. “That’s why I think we’ll make May,” he said. The whole building will be “brand new everything mechanical” – electricity and plumbing.
Bambrey said he expects to employ 40 to 60 people, although that number depends on how many want to work only part-time. They expect to hire locally, although managers may come from out of town, and intend to hire directly.
As far as hours, Bambrey said they are normally open seven days a week, but “I’m not committing to that now.”
Speaking as far as progress on such projects, Bambrey said, “Some days seems like nothing’s going on and others days it seems like a lot is going on.”
The company also has restaurants in Athens, Carthage, Denison, Gun Barrel City, Henderson, Jacksonville, Kilgore, Longview, Marshall, Mesquite, Nacogdoches, Sherman, Tyler and Wichita Falls.