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Tara Ariano

S02.E15: Shuler's BBQ

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Business is booming at a South Carolina barbecue restaurant, but the family-run establishment has trouble keeping up with the demands of hungry customers who are lined up outside the door.

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OMG. I love me some Marcus...and I love me some BBQ...ANY kind. ribs, pulled pork, brisket, or chicken.

 

I think Marcus was a little rough on the BIL...and his concentration on PR.

Although I have to admit, pushing major PR for a business that can't handle the customers it has is a little out of order.

I just feel bad because if HE's the one who called....(I didn't see the beginning of the show) he's the one who was sort of left to the side.

That said, his "PR expertise" was all BS speak. To be a PR person he sure couldn't even sell himself. I know he was edited to stumble and bumble, but he didn't impress me. In a meeting with REAL PR are people, I think they'd negotiate him under the table. He couldn't even get his catch phrases and buzz words out. All smoke and mirrors. No there, there. He was WEAK. And he was a PR person for the state. Yikes! 

 

It's only my opinion, but he came off like a person who got a cushy state job (possibly because of who he knew, or because the person hiring his didn't know him or herself, that all he was talking was BS), and stayed in that position...and was weak all along. We all know of people who BS their way into a job, and coast for decades. I'm not saying he did, but I wasn't impressed with what I saw.

Edited by selhars
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I liked Marcus' telling the owner's they didn't need to franchise.  I enjoyed this episode more than other recent ones mainly because there weren't shocking secrets about the owners that Marcus "found out" in the course of the show. But the whole brother-in-law thing was odd in how it was protrayed. Who thought they needed increased PR in the first place? Did he quit his job in order to help his in-laws?

 

And my biggest question is why even bother producing and marketing a biscuit that isn't the original Shuler's BBQ biscuit that everyone loves? I mean, I'm sure the "new and improved" recipe is fine and delicious but since it's not the original it's like why did Marcus feel the need to develop it into a product?  It seems like false advertising. If it was so special, why change it?

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I get what your'e saying about the biscuit. But I suppose we sort on know the answer. For me, it's just that we'll never know how it might have done if he had left the recipe alone.

 

It IS true that some people aren't into 'shortening' -- but then again how many of those people would be buying your biscuit anyway? Some. But enough to hurt sales? And he said he made them uniform in size....well I buy things that are not quite the same size each. But as long as the box has the total approximate weight,  stuff like that is sold all the time. BUT, if you're scaling up for mass production, I DO get that he, as a 'money guy,' would want things uniform, and as mass appeal -- and consistent as possible.

 

If it works and is successful, I suppose those are just the kinds of little tweaks that pay off.

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The one thing I don't like so much about Marcus is that sometimes it feels like he's trying to drive a wedge where it's maybe not necessary.  Like he'll side with employees against the former owners, or with one partner against another.  He's not creating the issue whole; there's always something there beforehand.  But I've said before that it feels a bit like a power play. And that's the sense I got here, from way early in the episode.

 

Is Facebook marketing one of those things people love to say because they think it sounds important? Yes. Was PR premature for this business? Yes. Was Ewell looking for an easy hands-off role, and not really a forceful marketing type? No doubt.  But he wasn't pushy or rude, he deferred to Marcus from very early on, and he never put himself over the owners.  So the way the show started boxing him out almost immediately rubbed me the wrong way.

 

That aside, I like that this was an "easy" episode.  It showed simple ways to raise profits that a lot of restaurants could probably benefit from, and there was room for lots of math.  And of course it didn't blow up due to horrible personalities or incorrect numbers, so we got a happy ending.  

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Ewell was an interesting character. He never committed to the business from the first time he was asked about it. Marcus did give him an opening when he said that someone needed to be constantly checking the quality/food costs and it shouldn't be the owners and Ewell kept quiet. I don't think Marcus knew what to do with Ewell who really had a one track mind.

I don't think Marcus sets out to pit people against people as much as he gives resources to whats working and takes away from what is not. That's why the Amazing Grapes episode was so satisfying because ownership was given to the managers who hung in there for years and kept the business afloat and it was taken away from the absentee-owner.

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I don't think Marcus sets out to pit people against people as much as he gives resources to whats working and takes away from what is not. That's why the Amazing Grapes episode was so satisfying because ownership was given to the managers who hung in there for years and kept the business afloat and it was taken away from the absentee-owner.

It's not so much pitting people against each other. It's figuring out who he needs and then splitting off other parties so that he seems closer by comparison.  Honestly it reminds me of a Pick-Up Artist technique.  Talking to a woman they'll try to send the message that "No one else here gets you. But I do.  That's why you should come home with me."  Thus stuff like "negging" was invented to break down the self-esteem just enough to insert themselves.  This rings some of the same bells.

 

In the Amazing Grapes episode the monetary split was fine. And the old owners were awful at management.  But in that initial round of interviews there was no hostility at them.  Only later it came up. And Marcus complained about him being absentee, while he himself will be absentee.  (And then he reamed out the new employee for giving an answer which he only gave because Marcus wasn't there.) It's a case where there was already a problem, but rather than mend it he made a split.

 

With Shuler's BBQ I don't think there's any viable plan that had Ewell working there.  (At least not if they didn't want to go franchise, and that was a reasonable call.)   However, I really think Marcus tried to drive that split.  Ewell said that he and his wife together made $200k, and he would only join if there was future potential (implying he'd take less to start).  Marcus related this as "Ewell expects you to pay him $200k."  Then Marcus couldn't even be a gracious winner while reading the text?  Stopping several times to mock phrases like "pro bono" when he could have just let it go.

 

What I'm saying is there are better ways to let family members conclude they shouldn't work together.  Especially one who looked like he was ready to take "no" for an answer.  Marcus, and probably the editing too, seemed to make this more dramatic than it had to be.

Edited by Amarsir
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That BIL came off of just wanting easy money for doing something that didn't need doing. I'm glad he left.

I realized I only live about 2 hrs from this place so I may go try it.

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I snorted in agreement when Marcus said "We could get Shuler (the kid) to do Facebook."  Burn!  The thing is people not on social media tend to view it as this untangleable morass, so a guy like Ewell can get away with his 'ooh look at me PR whiz' schtick with them. But not with somebody who's on multiple platforms like ML.

 

And he said he made them uniform in size

 

I think the reason for that is (besides efficiency in production) has to do with hitting the FDA nutritional guidelines standards. Your serving sizes have to be uniform. For chips and piece-y food, a serving size can be a weight or volume as opposed to a count. But for something like a biscuit where each one is the serving, each one has to be calorically identical to the others.

 

I can attest to the changing purchasing habits in cooking fats: I haven't been able to find lard in any of my local (NE US, suburban) supermarkets in years. I have to go to the markets that cater to the local Hispanic populations in order to get it. (I use it for pie crusts.) For supermarkets to abandon what used to be a staple suggests pretty dramatic changes in what people are willing to buy.

 

Anyway, I thought these people were lovely. I'm happy Marcus went the route he went instead of franchising. Ewell may not have quite deserved the Asshole Edit, but it is clear he wasn't a good fit for the business. And I'm kinda curious as to what watermelon cake tastes like. ::looks up closest Crumbs shop::

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It always surprises me when people can't provide a simple description of either the job they are actually doing, or the job they want to be doing, when Marcus asks for it.

I've taken over management in a couple of dysfunctional situations and one of the first things I do is ask the staff to give me a written description of their job. Maybe it's because it's in writing, but I've never had anyone unable to produce something coherent (although there is always an astounding discrepancy between what the official description of the position responsibilities are and what the people in the positions are actually doing.)  I think Ewell's whole career was based on bamboozling people who were intimidated by "technology" and "social networking" into believing he was the one who could take care of this essential but scary area of PR. Faced with Marcus who started their conversation by saying  he saw no need for any sort of marketing plan or marketing manager for a business that already had more demand than it could handle, Ewell choked.

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The one thing I don't like so much about Marcus is that sometimes it feels like he's trying to drive a wedge where it's maybe not necessary.  Like he'll side with employees against the former owners, or with one partner against another.  He's not creating the issue whole; there's always something there beforehand.  But I've said before that it feels a bit like a power play. And that's the sense I got here, from way early in the episode.

Is Facebook marketing one of those things people love to say because they think it sounds important? Yes. Was PR premature for this business? Yes. Was Ewell looking for an easy hands-off role, and not really a forceful marketing type? No doubt.  But he wasn't pushy or rude, he deferred to Marcus from very early on, and he never put himself over the owners.  So the way the show started boxing him out almost immediately rubbed me the wrong way.

 

I'd agree with that. Editing is key in shows like this. We can't forget that. 

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Ewell is a classic case of dazzle them with bullshit. I thought it was great that Marcus sniffed him out and took care of the problem before these nice folks had to deal with him.

Ok, I know i will be heading straight to hell with this thought but I highly doubt Schuler will take over the reins from mom and dad. He seems a bit old to still be carried so much by his dad. I can totally see him headed down the very spoiled only child path.

I will see myself out with my handbasket...

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I could have sworn I read something that lard wasn't as evil as thought and is making a comeback in Europe.

 

Ewell did himself no favors.  When he asked the owner if he should bring the plates to the back and she replied yes, he walked a few feet, then turned around and placed them back on the table when she wasn't looking.  Guy didn't really want to work.  I liked his description of marketing - "I post stuff on Facebook to my friends".  Um, that's not social media marketing!   There's no way a local BBQ joint in a small town in SC that's only open a few days a week can afford a PR person, let alone one that wants to make 6 figures.  This isn't The Palms steakhouse dude.

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Was Ewell the one that contacted the show? If yes, I suppose he did want to help. The restaurant is a hit and he thought it could grow. And he was right about that. He just wasn't clear on how to do it. HE wasn't even clear that he thought franchising was the way to do it. Unless he pitched that to the producers when he contacted them, I think MARCUS was the first one to mention franchising. Ewel just kept saying 'grow the business, grow the business." Marcus asked him a couple of times what he meant. And he just threw out some bull shit. I think he might have said that's what he thought Marcus would take the lead on.

 

As edited, he just didn't have much of a coherent plan and with out that clearly couldn't hold his own with Marcus, that's all. I think he wanted Marcus to handle the day-to-day 'business expansion' and be the 'brains'...and he'd do the PR to go along with that. But as we know and as was clear from the start that job didn't exist -- AND wasn't needed.

 

And there ARE chain BBQ places: Red, Hot and Blue....Famous Dave's just to name two. Now, granted, how big they are in the south I don't know. But they DO exist. So THAT is a separate issue from whether THESE people were ready to franchise. Even if all they did was franchise in regions OTHER than the south, they COULD franchise.

 

((As an example, I'm from Philly -- home of the cheesesteak, a town with a local neighborhood hoagie (sub) place every every two blocks. BUT there are STILL some hoagie/sub chains moving into the area...ie: Jersey Mike's, and Jimmy John's. So maybe Shuler's COULD franchise. I'm not saying it would be a good idea, but it's not like it COULDN'T be done.))

Edited by selhars
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I think Ewell saw his in-laws sitting on a goldmine and wanted a piece of it.  That being said, this was about family as well as business, and I really didn't like that Marcus and the show had no sympathy for that.  I wish they had had more consideration for what would happen if they threw the brother-in-law under the bus.  You could see the love the female owner had for her sister.  She wanted so badly for her to move back home, and then it blows up in their faces.  It sounded like the families weren't even speaking anymore. I can't imagine things are much better now that the show has actually aired.  Granted, the BIL has his part, but I'm really disappointed in Marcus. 

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It was a bit simplistic for Marcus to discuss raising prices and noting the attendant revenue increase, without discussing the very real possibility that customer counts would decline due to the very same price increase. While the buffet prices listed did seem low by my big city standards, I would have at least asked what other restaurants in the area were charging for their respective buffets.  

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I missed a few minutes of the show, and I did not know how the place got its name.  

 

I wanted to know,   "is Shuler the last name of the owners?"     But I REALLY wanted to know,  "Did they name the kid after the business?"   :)

 

The explanation is in the story at this link:       http://www.scnow.com/news/local/article_65409fe0-71e1-11e4-958d-d3b62b73e1ce.html

 

 

(answers:  no and no)

 

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Lynn sure looked uncomfortable when that baker was telling her that the ingredients would be changed.

 

The business buys 25,000  pounds of ribs per year, and they had not asked for a volume  discount?

 

The marketing guy did not know how to market himself or justify his bbq job.   And it looked like he was not interested in the routine work of running a bbq restaurant.   It was great when he told Marcus to open his eyes.    :)  

I can just imagine the city relatives seeing their country relatives earning 100K per year selling bbq and being self-employed..........  and thinking "they need our help!"

 

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http://shulersbbq.com

Edited by clod
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I HOPE this family doesn't let the way the show was edited, and the fact that there was no job for Ewell, come between them.

 

The BIL Ewell did a great thing. He saw that his brother and sister-in-law -- and that's family in my book -- had a great business that could grow even beyond anyone's imagination -- if they had the kind of help that Marcus could give. Only HE (and maybe NOT EVEN his wife) know is ULTIMATE motive for doing that. Did he do it just to GET IN on the business? Who knows?

 

It looked like Lynn's sister was feeling some kinda way about how her husband, Ewell, was treated. And I get that there could be some disappointment, ruffled feathers, and time needed to accept what happened. BUT there really wasn't any place for him to fit in. I think Ewell and his wife, Lynn's sister, should just have accepted that. Ewell COULD have contacted CNBC, and NOT wanted in, and continued to help them with any promotion or PR -- IF they needed it. His text about the 'pro bono' work was low....

 

He's a relative who saw "The Profit" on TV --  and said to his wife, "Hey, that show would be great for your sister and Norton! Let's see if they'll go on it?" They applied, they were picked.

 

The truth is there just wasn't a job for Ewell to do for Shuler's. Now IF -- they had franchised -- THEN at some point big companies do need a PR person to handle media calls, promotions, public outreach, etc. But even then it's got to be the right fit...it's more than social media, and that's all Ewell kept talking about. So I don't think he was even that great a marketing and PR person. He couldn't even market him self and articulate what HE wanted to do.

 

Unfortunately for EWELL, his own circle of friends who do know him, will see that he didn't come off too well. It's one thing for me and other viewers -- even if there are millions of them -- who dont' know you from a can of paint, to think you came off as an empty suit. Who cares? It's ANOTHER for people you KNOW and who could hire you. or recommend you for a job, to think you don't know what your'e talking about. If you're a casual friend or colleague of his who THOUGHT he was good at his job and knew what he was talking about, and you see this show...would you now recommend him for a gig...I know I wouldn't.  Now if you're an intimate friend and know he got a very bad edit, but that he really DOES know more than thinking marketing is Facebook and social media, then I guess you'd still know he knows his stuff. But you'd never know it from that episode.

Edited by selhars
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I didn't have any concerns about how Ewell was treated.  I didn't see anything that led me to believe he would be an asset to this company.  He reminded me an awful lot of Dane from Sweet Pete's.  He comes in, eats for free, roams around with a swagger, and expects to receive over 6 figures?  No.  He was yapping on about Facebook but I'd like to know exactly how many total hours he devoted to the page.  My guess is probably just a few.  It takes about 5 minutes to create a post, including uploading pics, and based on the number of posts, it looks like Ewell was spending about an hour a month (if he was the only 1 posting) yet he wants a 6 figure salary?  

 

If I spent 1 or 2 hours a month helping a relative run their page I would only expect a couple of free meals a month (but I'd still offer to pay for them).  

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A quick glance at FB and Twitter doesn't show all that much activity. And I didn't see any mention of the show.  I did see some posts about the flag.

 

I would definitely try them out if I am in the area so hopefully this show does boost traffic.

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The truth is there just wasn't a job for Ewell to do for Shuler's. Now IF -- they had franchised -- THEN at some point big companies do need a PR person to handle media calls, promotions, public outreach, etc. But even then it's got to be the right fit...it's more than social media, and that's all Ewell kept talking about. So I don't think he was even that great a marketing and PR person. He couldn't even market him self and articulate what HE wanted to do.

To my mind the correct way to handle him would be to say "It sounds like you'd fit in best in an office job. But I don't see any office building around here, do you?"

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I truly don't understand ANY sympathy for Ewell. The guy was obviously trying to take credit for his in-law's hard work. I love that Lynn tried to put a positive face on it, but the truth was that he was expecting (at least) $200K for him AND his wife - for what!? I didn't see his wife do anything. As for him, he couldn't even articulate his own contribution. Most likely, that was because the BS that Lynn and the family swallowed the way supportive families do sounds simply ludicrous to people who have no such obligation. The guy was waiting for the day they could open a second and a third location that he could cash in on. Marcus was right. Unless these two owners could be cloned for those other locations, it was never gonna work. I LOVED this episode. Well done all. ;)

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HOORAY for a great episode! What a relief from the previous shitfests of financial shenanigans, romantic entanglements, and Dr. Lemonis, Professional Therapist.

 

Loved loved loved that he discouraged franchising. I was immediately afraid that's what he would do but nope, he heard my pleadings through the t.v. set. (Hi, Marcus!) Except I have a quibble about that giant uncovered deck they built - it rains in SC.

 

I agree that switching the biscuit ingredients didn't make a lot of sense. Pretty sure he said shortening, not lard, then went on to say that people use butter now instead of shortening because they're "concerned about heart health". Uh... Marcus? Butter-filled white flour biscuits are not part of a heart healthy diet. Going from Crisco to butter doesn't make a damn bit of difference in that respect. Never mind people who are so concerned about heart health won't be shopping at Crumbs in the first place. And the package says "Born at Schuler's" when we know it's being made by a contract commercial baker. IMO the package is misleading. They would have been better off going with her recipe (with the exception of the self-rising flour) and market them for what they are - decadent lumps of fatty dough. I mean, is that watermelon cake "heart healthy"? C'mon.

 

Must be something about BILs because i have one who's the exact same way with b.s. double talk about marketing, growth and social media, and nothing of substance to show for it except grand delusions of making big bucks. But... what was he doing with those plates?????? Trying to look busy when the cameras showed up?

 

Giant US flag was a great idea. I have high hopes that this will be a happy, successful partnership.

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But... what was he doing with those plates?????? Trying to look busy when the cameras showed up?

I was wondering about this, too, Glowlights.  Although the guy is a lazy bullshitter I think that was a bit of editing at work.  It was as though someone told him to pick up the plates and then right when he turned he got a different cue from someone else and just put the plates back.  IDK, but it is a great thing that he is no longer a part of such a nice family business.

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I truly don't understand ANY sympathy for Ewell. The guy was obviously trying to take credit for his in-law's hard work. I love that Lynn tried to put a positive face on it, but the truth was that he was expecting (at least) $200K for him AND his wife - for what!?

 

Personally, I try to have sympathy for most people. And I am mindful that people can get a bad edit.

To be fair to him, Ewell never tried to take credit for his in-iaws hard work. He said he helped them out with some social media. And I'm sure he did. He called the show for them. The extent to which he really wanted to be part of it -- HE didn't even know. 

 

Did he want to 'ride their coat-tails?" DId he ant to "cash in?" I don't know if those phrases apply. I think the wanted to help them. I think he wanted them to grow. That's clear. And I think he wanted to be part of it. BUT being 'part of it' doesn't mean taking advantage, or taking credit for their work. I think he MIGHT have been willing to work hard. (Although I admit I didn't see ANY hustle of immediacy from him.) It didn't help that he couldn't even explain what he'd already done for them -- let alone articulate a vision for future growth. He mentioned bringing in a consultant. Has he not seen the show. Would Marcus EVER pay for a consultant? Are you cray cray?  MARCUS IS the consultant.

 

Ewell just didn't have much to offer. That's all. No hate. No harm. No foul. He didn't have the skills they need. So there was no place for him. I'm sure his wife -- Lynn's sister -- has some hurt feelings. PERHAPS more than him. Lot's of times spouses are more up set for the other, than the person directly affected. I feel for him not because he wasn't going to be part of the business. But because came off looking like he didn't even know his own field of PR.All smoke and mirrors BS. Not good.

Edited by selhars
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To be fair to him, Ewell never tried to take credit for his in-iaws hard work.

 

Gotta disagree. When you say the place is packed because of what you did (i.e; Facebook blah blah blah) and the truth is that the place is packed because of the GREAT food and even better people, you're trying to take credit for someone else's work. He did say the business was packed because of his work. He also must have said as much to Lynn, because (bless her heart) she tried passing that along to Marcus twice. Not a big disagreement, but I have run my own business and I'll tell you - nothing matters more than keeping the self serving people OUT... family or not. ;)

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Butter-filled white flour biscuits are not part of a heart healthy diet. Going from Crisco to butter doesn't make a damn bit of difference in that respect.

 

Current science says that the partially hydrogenated aspect of shortening is worse for you than plain ol' butter. All fat molecules are not equal, it turns out. Transfats are eviler than regular fats. Which isn't to say that one should Paula Deen one's way through life, but if you're choosing a cooking fat and an unhydrogenated oil won't work, butter is the way to go. 

 

One of the other things I found sweet about Shuler's is the way the staff uniformly referred to Lynn as Ms. Lynn. It's charming; both formal and in-.

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Not a big disagreement, but I have run my own business and I'll tell you - nothing matters more than keeping the self serving people OUT... family or not. ;)

 

Yeah. I hear ya.

 

I don't know whether it was you or someone else (sorry)...but I also totally agree about the big exposed deck. I get that they did need more seating and tables inside and out. But so much outside seating that would be weather "vulnerable' -- with not additional INSIDE seating. was crazy. Forget that it rains do you know how frigging HOT it gets in the SC sun? I KNOW they MUST be thinking about having pergolas or umbrellas overhead. (But they just become projectiles in severe storms.)

 

I do think the voiceover said they were going to expand to add a store, but personally, I was never clear about how much INSIDE seating would be increased. And THAT is what I think they needed most.

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Current science says that the partially hydrogenated aspect of shortening is worse for you than plain ol' butter. All fat molecules are not equal, it turns out. Transfats are eviler than regular fats. Which isn't to say that one should Paula Deen one's way through life, but if you're choosing a cooking fat and an unhydrogenated oil won't work, butter is the way to go. 

 

One of the other things I found sweet about Shuler's is the way the staff uniformly referred to Lynn as Ms. Lynn. It's charming; both formal and in-.

 

I love that Southern tradition, too. It's even better when the children call you "Miss ___" instead of your name alone. Miss Glowlights, would you read me a story? *swoon*

 

WRT butter, I'm also one of those people who prefer to use butter (sparingly) and healthy oils instead of hydrogenated products in daily life, and I still call b.s. on Marcus using "heart health" as an excuse to sell butter-laden white flour biscuits - right next to the butter-cream-laden cupcakes - as opposed to staying true to the original recipe. If they are delicious with shortening (and apparently they were), and that's the locally famous secret recipe at the destination restaurant, then go with it!! Biscuits are a splurge. Am I ranting? Oops. /rant

 

But actually, imo the bigger problem is that biscuits are delicious straight out of the oven and that's how they were served at Schuler's. She wasn't making tray loads days in advance and then reheating them, she was making them in fresh hot batches, which is when biscuits should always always always be served. It would have made more sense to sell the dough that people can bake up and eat just as if they were at Schuler's. Premade, commercially manufactured biscuits in a bag, and not from an authentic recipe? I can get that at Safeway. (Okay, now I'm done ranting. lol)

 

It's a testament to this show that I even bother to put any thought into it... in case Marcus is reading here and thinks I don't love him anymore. Because I do. Love!

 

B-I-l may have got the proverbial bad edit with the plates scene, but if he had been doing any actual work for the cameras to capture then I doubt the plates scene would have made the cut.  The family is most likely better off this way, in the long run.

 

Hoping the next episode is more like this one!

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imo the bigger problem is that biscuits are delicious straight out of the oven and that's how they were served at Schuler's.

 

Good point. True dat.

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Current science says that the partially hydrogenated aspect of shortening is worse for you than plain ol' butter. All fat molecules are not equal, it turns out. Transfats are eviler than regular fats. Which isn't to say that one should Paula Deen one's way through life, but if you're choosing a cooking fat and an unhydrogenated oil won't work, butter is the way to go. 

 

I agree that butter is healthier than shortening, but I think you are all blowing the changes to the recipe out of proportion. The changes were minimal. I make biscuits A LOT and I can tell you that switching to all-purpose flour and butter won't change much. Now - Having said that... take a third of a teaspoon of butter and a third of a teaspoon of shortening and taste them both. Shortening is used for effect and because it's cheap. It is not used for taste. You can't say the same for butter. It is entirely possible that the new ones taste better. Something to think about. ;)

Edited by RadioActiveRich
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I'll weigh in on the biscuit debate - if Ms Lynne and Ms Lorraine (the mom?) are happy, I'm happy.  What a cute little family!  I loved the trip to NYC - that was the best kind of drahma.

 

I'm glad that Ewell went back to his government job.  Sometimes things that are ok for government work just aren't good enough for the real world (speaking as a former gov't employee).

 

Best line of the night:  "Don't say Facebook again.  I'll get Shuler to do Facebook."

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I'm glad that Ewell went back to his government job.  Sometimes things that are ok for government work just aren't good enough for the real world (speaking as a former gov't employee).

 

It sounded to me like he'd retired from or left his gov job but not to help them. It sounded like he wasn't really doing anything else, and so he turned his attention to helping the in-laws. IF he went back to gov or was hired by ANYbody to do PR, I hope it's as a worker bee. Because he shows me NOTHING in terms of being a manager. He was WEAK.

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B-I-l may have got the proverbial bad edit with the plates scene, but if he had been doing any actual work for the cameras to capture then I doubt the plates scene would have made the cut. 

I'm with you on the rest of your post, but not this part. The show's not a documentary. (And for that matter, documentaries aren't scientific studies the way they like to imply.) The Profit is edited to make Marcus Lemonis look brilliant, much the same way as The Apprentice is edited to make Donald Trump look human.

Now certainly that's an easier task than the latter. But it's a mistake to ever think "They wouldn't have shown us that if the opposite had also happened." Footage is picked to create a story, not give a statistical representation.

That said, the the rule is that cameras *can't* show what *didn't* happen. So when you see something, it's true. It's just not the whole story.

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 Footage is picked to create a story, not give a statistical representation.

 

I had no idea. :D

 

No seriously, I construct narratives in my own line of work (which is not reality shows, thank god). There is inevitably someone who says "why did you pick that one quote and not everything else I said?". Because I pick what's representative - and pertinent - and distills the overall, and I don't typically need to show five people saying the same thing. I believe the plates clip showed us the deal. Like I said, any actual work.

 

Having said that... there is a weird discrepancy between how he spoke and bumbled around on the Profit and how he conducts himself when, say, appearing live on a NFL broadcast, or promoting a local seafood festival, etc. etc. Some of it's online. He can take over an announcer's booth and wing it, but he gets stuttering and stupid on camera with Marcus? Nah. Something's fishy (hee hee). And I don't think it's in the editing... *sigh* Oh, Marcus.

Edited by glowlights

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He seems a bit old to still be carried so much by his dad.

Yes, you're going straight to hell (just messin' with ya). This kid is adopted. We don't know anything about his background. It's perfectly understandable to me that he might really need this kind of pampering and affection for now, because he's not had it in the past. I give him a pass on that. A major pass.I don't think his parents will raise him to be a privileged frat boy.

 

Even with editing, it was clear that Ewell was just trying to jump on a gravy train, but he really was an empty suit. All hat but no cattle. All sizzle but no steak.

 

I think this is my favorite episode because it focuses on honest people who had a simple idea and worked hard to make it work. They needed help with growth (on the show, there was no indication of who called Marcus). I loved that Marcus didn't talk about franchising, but picked a couple of their products for distribution in other channels.

 

I saw comments about the deck. I think it was a great idea. Recall, he was talking about it being used 100 nights per year. 100. Nights. That's a pretty modest number. In Texas, you have many pleasant afternoons where you can seat people outdoors (sometimes March, but definitely April, May, much of October). And Texas nights (May-September). The customers aren't sitting on a city street having to deal with traffic. They're in on open land. LOTS of opportunities to serve food outdoors. Also, I can see their place accommodating spring/summer evening softball and soccer teams, too, where people would rather be outdoors than stink up the indoors after a game.

 

I can understand Ewell's enthusiasm: GOLD MINE.

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I can understand Ewell's enthusiasm: GOLD MINE.

 

 

iirc, he did say "gold mine" and "make a lot of money".    

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In Texas, you have many pleasant afternoons where you can seat people outdoors

 

Shuler's is in South Carolina.

I hope they get LOTS of umbrellas. S.C has plenty of pleasant afternoons, but can also have hot sun that can stroke you out, and fierce storm winds that can blow anything on that deck right into the water or back into the restaurant. Sure they can anchor the seating, but it should also be moveable. So the deck seating layout can be versatile for what ever event is there....and IF you do that you have to be careful HOW it's anchored....so people don't twist and ankle on an outlet or hole that was left uncovered from moving the umbrellas and chairs around.

 

To me the big plus of the deck is it could be set up for any need ....regular seating or special events.

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Shuler's is in South Carolina.

Yes, so rather than speak of a place where I have not lived, I spoke of a place where I have lived, also with a moderate winter climate, where you have many pleasant afternoons where you can seat people outdoors and also has a hot sun that can stroke you out. I was speaking to the people who had doubts about the deck and how useful it could be much of the year as opposed to a place in northern states. As far as hazards, where there are moving people and chairs and tables, you will have liabilities, both outdoors and in.

 

Another big plus with the deck is that it could be a place where people can smoke (don't know the smoking laws in SC). That could be another draw.

Edited by mojito
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What bothered me most about this episode was that the brother-in-law didn't care enough to learn the business and when Marcus said they needed a general manager, he didn't care enough to point out that he wasn't general manager material.  Like everyone has said, he wanted a big paycheck even though there was no job to support that kind of expenditure.  Sad for the family but the business is doing great!

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I believe Mr. Norton (the owner), said he's read that Marcus' "1st offer is his best offer", . That leads me to think he may have called the show for help??? Ewell was no asset to the business, Didn't offer the kind of help they  needed.. Better that he's not there, except the fact that the sister doesn't talk to Lynn is very sad. That bit with the plates was ridiculous!  Did Ewell think the cameras wouldn't catch that?  Marcus has mentioned that a new manager was found shortly after the esisode aired, to help the family  run the business and give them some relief.The deck is really only useful in good weather, but would be great for events. The restaurant could use more indoor space, as someone else mentioned.  These are real-deal people, charming and down to earth and I'm sure Shuler will be raised to be a great adult. I loved that Marcus said, at the end, that he loves that place  "to come and be myself" and feel like part of the family. Marcus  a wonderful, extraordinary person, according to those who know him personally,  and I agree, but doesn't have enough people "close" to him for relaxation and "down time"  This may be of his own choosing but We all need that,  particularly people who are so energetic & busy.  This was one of the best episodes. Showed a great business and lovely people. Wish them all well.

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That is a great point, rainbow lady!!!  The deck will only work with good weather...I they need to make the enclosed part of the restaurant bigger. 

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I was doing a little research on this episode and here is what I found:

- Ewell submitted Shuler's to the show.  Two weeks later, the show called. The Hughes said they would talk to the producers but they didn't think they were a fit for the show.

- Ewell's background is actually impressive. He oversaw the Louisiana Seafood board and helped that state's business navigate through 5 hurricanes and the BP oil spill.  Some Japanese dignitaries traveled to New Orleans to talk to him when they were going through all their weather / nuclear plant issues.  Ewell resigned from the board when auditors questioned spending, vendors and the board's approvals process.

 

Shuler's is definitely the happiest episode from this season...and their business has very much "profited."   :0]

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He may have had an impressive PR background but that isn't what Shuler's needed to spend several hundred thousand on a year on.  The PR they already had from word of mouth was far more impressive then facebook or tv ads could get them. They needed a manager which Ewell didn't want to do.

Edited by nobodyyoucare

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