Back when the corner of 12th and Chicon in East Austin was as rough and tumble a neighborhood as Austin had to offer there lived a king.

Hailing from Beaumont, Texas, Reggie was at the top of the then nascent trailer movement in our town. He had several facets to his kingdom. Firstly and perhaps most significantly, there was fried catfish.

Austin’s fried catfish scene has never been a strong one. Yes, there is catfish hereabouts but the culture attached to it in places like Birmingham, Alabama or Oxford, Mississippi simply does not exist. Reggie set out, perhaps unknowingly, to change our city’s perspective and Austin never had it so good. What sort of magical dust was he sprinkling on his fryolators to make the food come out in such a supreme state?

We never knew and he sure wasn’t telling. This was where Austin’s deep underground food fanatics came to find the holy grail of east side soul food. Then one day the king abdicated his throne and vanished leaving only the corporal husk of his greatness; a little red, wooden trailer that as recently as yesterday, sat abandoned behind a forlorn chain link fence.

Now he’s back. The once and future king of Austin soul food: Reggie, is back in business. Ethereal hushpuppies, chicken gizzards, boudin, fried chicken wings, dirty rice…..the list goes on and on with no foreseeable end to the intense deliciousness.

We’d like to tip our hat to Alan Sudo over on the Austin Chowhound board for issuing a general alert to Reggie’s presence earlier this evening. We were near comatose after a trencherman’s supper of sausage pizza, fried chicken and boudin balls washed down with Trappiste Rochefort 10 but we wrecked ourselves off the giant sofa and navigated over to the southwest corner of Manor and Airport to gather visual documentation for you our readers.

It doesn’t get any bigger than this.

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