The local Captain D’s Seafood Kitchen is literally on top of the hill these days in physical presence and the sales sheet.
The Milledgeville franchise has ranked No. 1 three out of four years, besting 560 worldwide.
Area franchise partner Wes Cummings said the staff and management deserves every accolade.
“They are the ones who get it done and understand our philosophy as a company,” he said. “They live it, breathe it and work it everyday some for 50 and 60 hours a week.”
Milledgeville’s Captain D’s has a visible, long-term staff. The eight-person team brings nearly 130 combined years in the industry.
“There’s a comfort with our guests being able to see the same people day in and day out,” Cummings said. “Every single manager employed at this restaurant with the exception of one grew up in the business.”
Current head manager Alan Carswell has 28 years invested.
Carswell said he started working in the kitchen toward the end of high school.
“I took over the store as a general manager at 19 years old,” he said. “When I first started, sales were about half of what we are doing right now.”
Carswell attributes most of the consistent success to fellow staffers.
“We have very good people that have been with us for a long time,” the manager said. “Traditionally, we have the least amount of turnover in our entire company. I don’t think there is another store that hangs in with employees as much as we have.”
Back in 1969, Shoney’s Inc. was the original Captain D’s franchisor.
The local eatery’s parent company SPFS Inc. started its first Captain D’s by 1976. SPFS operates 18 restaurants currently.
The Milledgeville franchise opened in 1978. Cummings purchased the seafood restaurant nine years later.
The establishment used the current Pickle Barrel Café building, until moving near Walmart in May of 2005.