FLORENCE, S.C. — The Lost Cajun restaurant in Florence held its grand opening on Thursday with a ribbon cutting. The ribbon cutting also signaled its membership with the Greater Florence Chamber of Commerce. Chamber ambassadors joined in the celebration.
The Lost Cajun is at 2106 W. Lucas St. between Starbucks and Julia Belle’s restaurant.
The franchise is owned by Florence native Terrance Thomas.
Thomas said he held a private tasting session Monday evening and a soft opening before his grand opening on Thursday.
He said everything has gone great so far.
The franchise headquarters is in Louisiana and is known for its Cajun seafood and gumbo. Beverages are Coke products, tea and coffee. It is a casual dining experience with tasteful food made with love, Thomas said.
“It is a family restaurant, moderately priced,” Thomas said.
Due to the pandemic, the restaurant offers curbside, takeout and delivery service with limited dine-in seating offered socially distanced.
Thomas said he has dabbled in a lot of things and owned a small restaurant franchise before the Lost Cajun.
Opening in the midst of a pandemic has been challenging, Thomas said. He said the time was right, and he has confidence in his product, so much so that he is opening a second location in the spring in downtown Florence. Thomas said the downtown location was supposed to be the first to open but ended up taking longer so he decided to go ahead with the Lucas Street location.
He said there is no sane reason for opening two restaurants during a pandemic.
“We had the opportunity and took it,” he said. “I thought it was the right time for something different.”
Thomas' second restaurant will be at 135 N. Dargan St. in downtown Florence.
Thomas said he has 30 employees and believes in promoting within and working by the Golden Rule, doing unto others as you would have others do to you.
Thomas has hired chefs to do the cooking but enjoys cooking. He said they let him in the kitchen some himself.
“We hope everyone will come out and taste the food,” Thomas said. “We want to earn your business."
Thomas said he joined the chamber to meet like-minded people. He said it is a great resource and hopefully he can be a service to others.
Thomas is a graduate of Wilson High School. After high school, he joined the U.S. Marine Corps. He has three children.