‘1401 Speight’ lets Waco pick the plate

By Debra Gonzalez

A&E Editor

Baylor students who wander around town looking for a great bite but find the same old options can finally have a say in their dinner.

You may have seen their advertisements on your Facebook sidebars, “Something exciting is coming to Waco!” The website, www.1401Speight.com, is letting Wacoans choose the cuisine of their upcoming Waco restaurant, via voting on their website.

The website, started by Baylor graduates Vincent and Chelsea Harris, gives four options: gourmet tacos, upscale franks or sausages, a burger bar or “other,” where you can write in your own vote.

Chelsea Harris said they came up with the idea of being involved in the community while living in Waco, and wanting to give back to Baylor and the city.

“We were trying to think of how we could do it, and we have very entrepreneurial spirits,” Harris said. “So we thought that since while we were at Baylor, we were always really happy with our favorite food places and restaurants, but Waco could always use more. We’re trying to think of a way, or a little niche, that we didn’t think had been reached yet. So we were just trying to think of different ideas and we thought that it would be a way that everyone else could enjoy whatever we came up with.”

Austin senior Ashley Pereyra likes the idea.

“That’s a very innovative idea,” Pereyra said. “It will draw more people to the opening of the restaurant. A restaurant created by locals for locals.”

The restaurant aims to open on homecoming weekend of 2013, but a winner is not definite yet.

“Everyone’s kind of voting for different things,” Harris said. “The gourmet tacos and the franks and sausages have been the top two, and they go back and forth. There’s been a ton of votes for both of those, so those are definitely where people I guess see the attraction. People are more attracted to that kind of food, or that’s just the little niche that hasn’t been reached yet.”

Besides the main choices, they’ve also seen a lot of write-ins.

“Sometimes it’ll be just a variation of one of the main ones. There’s some people requesting change, but we’re trying to come up with an original idea,” Harris said.

While they’re not sure of a name yet, 1401 Speight may stick.

“We originally were thinking it would be a different name, we just have ended up calling it that,” Harris said. “We could keep it that unless we come up with another, once we decide what kind of food it will be, or rather the people decide what kind of food it will be, I don’t know. It might still be 1401 Speight; it’s kind of catching on with us, so, we’ll see if it is with everyone else.”

Harris is really excited about the restaurant and incorporating social networking in its opening.

“If people still want to go vote on the website, we’ll be hoping to come up with the decision of what kind of food it is sometime after the new year,” Harris said. “Our Twitter handle will keep you updated on what’s going on with the restaurant. We’ll keep posting on the blog as we progress, on the website at www.1401speight.com, what’s going on, and pictures, even though everyone can probably see it since it’s so close to Baylor. But we’re just really excited for people to get their input and see what everyone else wants, because we definitely want it to be for y’all and everyone else to enjoy, not just us.”

Harris said their goal is to create a local, unique restaurant that everyone can enjoy.

“We just want it to be something fun, to be a relaxing place that Baylor and just people from around the city can go and relax and have a good time.”

For updates or more information on the restaurant, visit www.1401speight.com, or follow @1401speight on Twitter.