A Dallas-based restaurateur is turning one of the biggest gag gifts of the early aughts— the singing plastic fish known as Big Mouth Billy Bass — into the signature design detail of his growing restaurant chain. At Flying Fish, a bar and grill with nine locations spread across three states, restaurateur Shannon Wynne will happily offer a basket of fried catfish in exchange for a Big Mouth Billy Bass donation. Before nailing them to the “adoption center” wall, employees remove the batteries from the fish, so that they don’t sing that Al Green song for all of eternity.
An avid fisherman himself, Wynne received Big Mouth Billy Bass as gifts on several occasions before opening his seafood shack. “‘Take Me to the River' still haunts me in my dreams,” the restaurateur recently told Dallas-area news station WFAA. But he’s still got a soft spot for the musical robot. “We wanted to make sure every Billy Bass has a home,” Wynne explains.
• If You Still Have a Big Mouth Billy Bass, Give It to This Restaurant [Munchies]
• Restaurant owner's 'on the wall' idea reels in customers [WFAA]
• Flying Fish [Official Page]