The Restaurant Chain You Probably Forgot Was Inspired By A Toby Keith Song

Toby Keith is known for a number of accomplishments, including penning an ode to name-brand plastic drinkware and suplexing Jeff Jarrett at a TNA pay-per-view. Keith didn't just leave the world an entertainment legacy when he died on February 5, though, but also a restaurant chain that bears his name. Well, his name and that of one of his numerous country hits, since the chain's called Toby Keith's I Love [stylized as a heart] This Bar and Grill. Kind of an unwieldy name, but the words echo the title of his 2003 chart topper about a saloon that attracts "winners, losers, chain smokers, and boozers."

The video accompanying Keith's single was shot at Cowboy Palace Saloon, an establishment that bills itself as "the last real honky-tonk in Los Angeles." By 2009, however, the first TKILTBAG opened in Mesa, Arizona. An additional 19 locations would soon follow in locations across the U.S. The chain offers live entertainment and booze just like the Cowboy Palace, but it also features a full menu of bar foods. Some of the current menu items have countrified names such as Tumbleweed Onions, Calf Fries, and Jailhouse Chili, while there's also a T.K. Burger that we're guessing wasn't named for Ted Kaczynski, Tawny Kitaen, or Takeshita Kōnosuke. The house specialty is a fried bologna sandwich, a regional specialty claimed by regions across the U.S. Appropriately enough, the same thing could also be said of country music.

There are only a few TKILTBAG locations left

Unfortunately for Mr. Keith's career as a restaurateur, most locations of his namesake eatery closed down within just a few years of opening. Moreover, plans to build restaurants in an additional 19 cities collapsed before they could be completed. Unsurprisingly, the company in charge of this enterprise — Boomtown Enterprises — was sued for more than $28 million. Keith, however, was not caught up in all of the mess because TKILTBAG was actually not a celebrity-owned chain. Instead, the singer just leased the rights to his name and would sometimes appear onstage as part of the featured entertainment.

As of today, there are just two Toby Keith's I Love This Bar and Grill locations, both located in Keith's home state of Oklahoma. Neither one is owned by Boomtown Enterprises, however, abut are instead operated by the Hal Smith Restaurant Group. Each one seems to be doing okay at present because the Oklahoma City location has a four-star TripAdvisor rating, while the one located in Moore gets 3.6 stars from Yelpers. The former also shows a full calendar of live music acts booked through January, while its Facebook page is also advertising a Valentine's Day event featuring entertainment from a harpist. This is obviously meant to be sweet and romantic, but we can't help hoping they'll play "Should Have Been A Cowboy" or "How Do You Like Me Now."