Longtime Germantown establishment, Flabby Devine's, better known by the town's people as Flabby's shut its doors a short time back. It's uncertain who will reopen them, or whether or not someone will, but what is certain is that the town has lost a great little neighborhood getaway.
According to Flabby's website, the building long housed Heinz's, a neighborhood grocery store, until Jim "Flabby" Devine, a bricklayer by trade, opened his family owned restaurant there in 1952. Long named "Flabby Devine's" after the presumably fat owner, it became Flabby's Schnitzelburg (with the slogan "Divine food" evoking the original owner's surname) with the new management.
Flabby's was pretty much what you would expect from an urban saloon, with a few distinctions. It was mostly clean, and the asphalt-tiled floors were buffed to a shiny glow and the tables were scrupulously wiped. The walls were covered by a simple maple paneling and patterned with framed cartoons and newspaper clippings, sports memorabilia, as well as a collection of beer signs, and oddly, but not too out of line for this neighborhood, a row of empty of beer bottles lined up on a shelf high on the wall behind the bar.
The things that I'll miss about this place if it were to never open its doors again are its Tuesday evening all you can eat fried chicken specials, and the old time feel of the place that you can only get from an establishment such as this place while grabbing a cheap beer. It's been damn near a year since I've stopped by Flabby's, but I can still hear the clank of the dishes being shuffled around as side orders were being scooped into them before being brought to the tables, the smell of lemon-fresh dishrags that had just swiped across the tables that we sat down at, as well as the faces of the old men that sat cross-legged while drinking cheap bottle beer.
I'm not for certain if Flabby's will reopen as the same bar/restaurant that it used to be, but I would almost guarantee that someone will eventually buy it, and reopen it to the public as something. I have heard rumors that there are interested potential buyers looking into the property, but nothing has been set in stone. I guess only time will tell of what's in store for Flabby's future, but one thing seems certain. This book appears to not be finished.
Photo courtesy of Damian Gerlach
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