Catfish Cabin making changes under new ownership

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MEMPHIS, Tenn. — A popular Memphis restaurant is undergoing a makeover after dealing with health violations and negative publicity over the last year.

An appearance on a nationally televised restaurant renovation show showed Catfish Cabin in a bad light, but its new management is determined to bring out the positives of this staple in the Memphis community.

"We'll have great service, great customer service, great food and great live entertainment," owner Bevis Bell said.

As of this week, the restaurant is now owned and operated by Exquisite Catering. It's a group of Memphians that have been coming to the restaurant their whole lives, and they're promising to make slight tweaks that will make a big difference.

"I'm very, very, very excited. It's been a long time coming. The family is gonna come in, and do what we gotta do to make sure that our customer service is where it needs to be and our food is where it needs to be," Bell said.

Bell has been in the news before. He previously ran Signature Funeral Home in Memphis and faced allegations of improper business practices, including holding dead bodies hostage. But Bell insists those accusations have no merit, and that his lawyer is getting all the charges dropped. He intends to run the restaurant, which will be called Bell's Catfish and Soul Food, with the highest of business standards.

"I'm very committed. I'm very hands on, so I'll be hands on with the cooking, the service, hands on with everything that consists of Bell's Catfish and Soul Food."

"I just love this place, because I'm  73-year-old and still coming here Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday. I just hope you have a wonderful time. I think he's going to revive it," Virginia Visor, who was a waitress for 35 years, said.

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