The Shack Restaurant was originally opened in 1989 by Russell Han. He purchased a building in East Lyme, Connecticut that was aptly named The Little Brown Shack. East Lyme is Russell’s hometown and he wanted his restaurant to be a well-loved part of the community. With an exorbitant amount of elbow grease and determination, Russell transformed the business into a successful dining destination with a constant line to get in the door. Word spread that the best breakfast in the area could be had at The Shack in East Lyme. Customers repeatedly asked for lunch and dinner to be offered so they could enjoy the all-American favorites and classic comfort foods that The Shack was known for all day long. Always willing to respond to customer needs, the restaurant hours were expanded and the restaurant began offering lunch and then dinner as well.
Continued success resulted in longer and longer lines. People who were traveling from surrounding towns to enjoy a great meal at The Shack suggested that another location would be a welcome addition. So, in 2003, Russell’s son, Jeremy Han, opened J.R.’s Shack [now The Shack] in Waterford, Connecticut. Armed with The Shack reputation and popular menu the new restaurant quickly became a successful addition to the company.
Russell’s daughter, Michele Han, returned to the family business as the Office Manager in 2006 and her husband Jim Morgan joined the Management Team. With the whole family now on-board, The Shack faced a difficult decision in East Lyme. As talks of developing the land leased by The Shack grew more serious and the danger of losing its lease loomed, the family decided it was time to leave behind the building that had been part of their family for 18 years. In July 2007, The Shack Restaurant in East Lyme moved from its well-known ramshackle building to an end-cap space located at the intersection of Flanders Road and Boston Post Road. Even with the significantly larger building, people were still lined up for the best breakfast, lunch, and dinner around.
With many customers east of the Gold Star Bridge pleading their case for another location, it was decided that a third restaurant would be opened in Groton, Connecticut. The Shack Restaurant in Groton opened on April 21, 2010. The Han family is excited to have the opportunity to be a part of the Groton area and surrounding communities.
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