Mr. Strawn opened Strawn’s Eat Shop in 1944 in Shreveport, LA, across from the Centenary College campus. In 1958 Mr. Strawn sold the restaurant to Gus Alexander. Under Gus’s leadership, Lula McCoy “The Fried Chicken Maker”, Ella Hamilton “The Pie Lady”, and Gladys Duncan “The Great Waitress” joined him to make Strawn’s Eat Shop a success. It was during this time that Strawn’s became known as a “Shreveport Tradition.”
In 1988, Buddy and Nancy Gauthier bought the restaurant from Gus. Legend has it Buddy won the restaurant in a poker game from Gus, a rumor which Buddy has always denied. In 1992 The Gauthier’s expanded Strawn’s Eat Shop from seating 50 people to 150 people. In 2001 Strawn’s became a family tradition when Celeste, The Gauthier’s oldest daughter, opened Strawn’s Too at 1640 E. 70th St. in Shreveport, and in 2004 their youngest daughter, Heather, opened Strawn’s Also in Bossier City at 2335 Airline Dr. Wes, The Gauthier’s oldest son, moved back in 2009 to take over the original location at 125 Kings Hwy.
Southern Living Magazine featured Strawn’s Eat Shop’s famous ice box pies in 1994, 2003 and 2009, and The Food Network featured Strawn’s Eat Shop March 10, 2003 on “The Best Of.” In 2011, Strawn’s was named “Shreveport’s #1 Most Iconic Restaurant.”