Way Down Yonder Reopening on the South Side
Way Down Yonder has made (another) comeback. After a location in Olde Towne East, a fire at owner and chef Yonder Gordon’s home, a hotel stay, and an interim location in Linden, the family-owned and operated business is back in action on the South Side.
“The good thing about it is this is our own space. Our own space is something we’ve always dreamed of,” says Gordon’s daughter, who’s also named Yonder, but goes by Yanda Millz. “We went through this transition and journey, go through all that to get to us here. Nothing but God that got us to this point.”
Their new standalone location sits at 3847 S. High St., at a former Long John Silver’s in front of a large strip mall. They’re surrounded by chains like Waffle House, Bob Evans, and Ponderosa, and Gordon says the business community, who’ve all made their visits, are excited to have a new option in the neighborhood.
The building has shed its Long John Silver’s aesthetic and radiates the New Orleanian culture and color that Gordon brought with her back in 2000. Purple, yellow and green cover the walls and tables, a mural by artist Brandi Grammas livens up the back wall, and the sound of jazz fills the space.
The Way Down Yonder kitchen will be putting out their usual cajun and creole fare, with some notable additions, including shrimp and grits and beignets. Gordon says they’ll be doing chef specials weekly as well. Their menu offers an array of seafood, including tilapia, perch, catfish and shrimp, along with gumbo, wings, Po Boys, and a bunch of traditional southern sides like jambalaya, rice, beans, mac and cheese and butter corn.
Gordon’s been cooking or catering in some form for most of her life, starting at parties for family and friends in New Orleans. She and her ex husband also ran a charter business, bringing her customers out to the Gulf to fish. They kept it going for a while, even bringing Columbusites down to the Gulf as they started making trips to and from the area, but their eventual separation put the charter business to an end.
Gordon made Columbus her permanent home in 2002, when Way Down Yonder got its start. They’ll celebrate their grand reopening next Tuesday, May 7 at 12 p.m.
“We just excited, want to be able to share our culture with the people in the area, people all over,” says Millz. “We excited for people to come in and feel comfortable, enjoy the music, feel like they at home.”
For more information, visit waydwnyonder.com.