A University of Alabama alumnus is stepping into the restaurant business as he prepares to open the desserts-only Peach Cobbler Factory on the Tuscaloosa Strip next month.

Wade Johnson, a 1988 UA graduate, joined the Steve and DC Show on 95.3 the Bear Tuesday morning to talk about the new-to-market concept and what patrons can expect when they try it out.

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"We're hoping to open in the next two or three weeks. We're finishing up getting our final inspections from the county, the city and the health department and we're ready to go," Johnson said. "We're right there on the Strip and the good news about our store across from Publix is we have parking, so we're on the Strip behind Moes and the Supe Store but with parking, curbside, for the people all over town who don't like coming to the Strip, come on down."

Like the name suggests, the Peach Cobbler Factory will focus on cobblers and other desserts including banana puddings and cinnamon rolls.

"It's not just cobbler but cobbler's our base and we say it's a factory what we mean by that is we keep manufacturing new ways to eat cobbler. We have cinnamon peach praline, we have mango peach, we have the blackberry peach which is sweet and tart," Johnson said. "12 cobblers, 12 banana puddings, six cinnamon rolls including a cobbler-stuffed cinnamon roll and when you can't decide, we have dessert flights."

The Peach Cobbler Factory was started in Nashville by Louisiana natives who relocated to Louisville, Kentucky and now aim to expand to new locations across the country.

"When I bought a franchise and I bought a few, the first place I was going go was Tuscaloosa," Johnson said. "It took me straight back to comfort food and college here in T-Town and all my great memories here and I knew where I wanted to put it. I wasn't going to put it anywhere but on the Tuscaloosa Strip."

Johnson also said the Tuscaloosa location will be the only Peach Cobbler Factory with crimson signage and decor instead of the peach-orange theme every other store features.

"Our concept is peach -- it's orange! and the University of Alabama is our landlord and they said, 'No, no. No orange. There will be no orange here, you don't understand," Johnson said. "So corporate signed off on allowing us to be the only franchise with a red sign and red decorations inside."

The Peach Cobbler Factory aims to open in early February and will be open every day, including late nights until 2 a.m. on Thursdays, Fridays and Saturdays.

For more exclusive stories about restaurant and retail development in and around the Druid City, stay connected to the Tuscaloosa Thread.

Editor's Note: 95.3 the Bear and the Tuscaloosa Thread are both owned by the same parent company, Townsquare Media.

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