Independents Week: Hugo’s

Lots of you guys mentioned Hugo’s as one of your favorite locally owned businesses on our Independents Week post from a couple of days ago.

We couldn’t agree more.

Hugo’s has been in that basement on Block Street for longer than I’ve been alive. I had my first Derek’s Special when I was in High School, and since then I’ve probably eaten at Hugo’s one gazillion times.

If I moved away from Fayetteville, when I came back to visit, my first stop would be Hugo’s.

I’d make love to a Blue Moon Burger if I could. Sorry. I would.

But enough gushing. As part of Independents Week, we’ll be highlighting some of our favorite locally owned restaurants. We got in touch with Jason, the owner of Hugo’s and he was nice enought to answer a few questions.

Fayetteville Flyer: What have you been listening to lately?
Jason: Here in the basement, we only listen to Big Band. All day, all night. I hear it in my sleep.

FF: How long has Hugo’s been in business?
Jason: Since 1977.

FF: How long have you owned the place?
Jason: I’ve been with Hugo’s for over ten years and became owner almost five years ago.

FF: I have a hard time deciding between the Derek’s Special, the CSTS (w/ avocado), and the Blue Moon Burger every time I come in. It’s a battle. What’s your favorite menu item?
Jason: My new favorite is the Wednesday Special, the Bruschetta Burger…it’s awesome. It’s served on a kaiser roll with Parmesan cream sauce, mozzarella cheese and a blend of tomatoes, onions, garlic, olive oil and basil.

FF: That sounds awesome. With the economy the way that it is, shopping local is more important now than ever. What are some of your favorite Fayetteville owned businesses in town?
Jason: Wow, one of the great things about Fayetteville is that we have so many interesting, original, locally-owned businesses. To name just a few: Hammontree’s is a new favorite – his soups and sandwiches are amazing. Also, Ozark Natural Breads is a wonderful family owned business that Hugo’s has used for years. Flying Possum Leather is another great Fayetteville business. I just got a pair of Bruce’s handmade sandals, and I looooove them.

FF: A huge contributor to the atmosphere at Hugo’s are all that cool things you guys have on the walls there. Where does that stuff come from?
Jason: The real question is: “Where is it going?” If someone out there has the JFK commemorative plate, please bring it home. No questions asked. Hugo’s was decorated by one of the original owners, Liz Page. She found most of the decor at local thrift and antique shops, and we now add the occasional worthy item.

FF: I have to ask: what’s up with that pipe along the far wall?
Jason: Those are actually working pipes from our boiler that heat the building during the winter. We are in a basement, after all.