Ye Olde College Inn was originally The Pig Stand, a chain from Texas. The building was owned by Denis Rufin Sr. and when The Pig Stand got behind on lease payments, the Rufin family took back The Pig Stand and started their own restaurant and bar business. Emile Rufin, and his two brothers Denis Jr. and Albert would run Ye Olde College Inn for seventy years. The menu changed, but the New Orleans Po-Boy and the Breaded Veal Cutlet are still served today. In the 70’s the Rufin’s nephew, Ray Reicke became a partner with the surviving brother Emile. Reicke was the former owner of Chicken Delight, remembered by its marketing jingle “Don’t cook tonight, call Chicken Delight”. Together Ray and Emile would lead Ye Olde College Inn until its sale in 2003.
The Blancher family bought Ye Olde College Inn February 5, 2003. The Blanchers, who were already operating their own New Orleans landmark, the “Rock’n‘Bowl”, have some interesting parallels with the Rufin’s. Instead of three brothers, it would be three brothers-in-law, Jimmy Hankins, Chad Penedo, and Johnny Blancher. Emile Rufin and Johnny Blancher were both LSU Baseball players as well. Just two years into their tenure Hurricane Katrina hit and Ye Olde College Inn sustained 3 feet of water, and significant roof damage which destroyed the old building. An older brick and steel building that predated Ye Olde College Inn would be key to the comeback. The building was built in 1929 and it was just 30 feet from the original location. Less than 90 days later Ye Olde College Inn was born and a neighborhood restaurant with great bar and good food has been flourishing ever since.
Ye Olde College Inn 3000 South Carrollton Avenue New Orleans, LA 70118