Weaver D’s, iconic Athens restaurant, to close

The Athens, Georgia, restaurant known for coining the phrase “automatic for the people,” is expected to close in the next two to three weeks, the owner said.

Weaver D’s Delicious Fine Foods has been an Athens institution for more than two decades. Owner Dexter Weaver previously told the Athens (Georgia) Banner-Herald and other outlets the economy is responsible for the decline in business.

The famed restaurant is located in a neon green building on East Broad Street just a short walk from downtown Athens. Over the years, the soul food eatery became a fixture for local residents, University of Georgia college students and alumni alike.

“Weaver D’s Fine Foods is announcing that we will be closing the restaurant for good 2-3 weeks from today,” Weaver said in a Monday Facebook post. “The restaurant is for sale along with it’s contents. Come and get your last eat-on here at Weaver D’s, where our food has made us world famous for the last 27 1/2 years! Automatic, Dexter Weaver!”

The James Beard Foundation in 2007 named the restaurant an American Classic.

R.E.M. used Weaver’s signature phrase “automatic for the people” as the title of their 1992 album. Weaver was born in Athens, but grew up in Baltimore, Md., before returning home to create a classic in 1986, according to the Southern Foodways Alliance.

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Todd DeFeo loves to travel anywhere, anytime, taking pictures and notes. An award-winning reporter, Todd revels in the experience and the fact that every place has a story to tell. He is the owner of The DeFeo Groupe and also edits Express Telegraph and Railfanning.org.