Li’l Chow, Baby was inspired by the movie Footloose. Kevin Bacon’s character moves to a small town that doesn’t allow dancing, but that isn’t going to stop him from organizing a prom. Armed only with his love for dance, he eventually melts the heart of the pious John Lithgow. Then Bacon turns into a wolf and plays basketball and goes back in time in a Delorean. The ’80s were a blur to Chow, Baby.

I sort of feel as though Fred’s Texas Café is following the same trajectory as Bacon’s character. Last month, the Outlaw Chef, Terry Chandler, armed only with his 1849 gold prospecting outfit and sterling reputation, opened a second location out in the ’burbs of North Fort Worth.

Chow, Baby was curious to see if Fred’s could maintain its comfortable, edgy, dive-y diner mojo and be a little oasis of awesome in an otherwise barren culinary landscape up near Keller. This is, after all, the same Fred’s that has survived — nay, thrived — amid the West 7th chain-a-thon that built up around the mother ship.

But can Fred’s be imitated out in the McSprawl? Well, no. But then I’m not sure if Chandler and company were going for a replica.

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