It’s a little off the beaten path, but the Tipsy Cowboy
in rural Pinconning inspires a unique customer loyalty.
When a summer storm damaged the bar and grill at 116 Pinconning Road, owner Tina Goodman readied herself to close for a few days.
“We posted that we had to shut down, and not long after we had people showing up with chainsaws and trailers to help us clean up,” she says.
That’s not the only time her customers volunteered to help.
“There were potholes out by the road that I was looking to find a contractor for and that next morning someone came through, graded it and leveled it.” She says she never did learn the name of the Good Samaritan.
Goodman, her sister Janice Hebert, and their mom, Diane Chosay, work together to make the bar and grill something that inspires that kind of loyalty.
Inside the restaurant, you'll find unique tables and a family atmosphere.
“I’m not sure if it’s because we’re women owned or not, but we always have a regular or someone who is there to immediately help out,” Goodman says.
The women try to return the favor by giving the community a place to gather.
Goodman says she and her sister teamed up to buy what was once The Ole Rendezvous to fulfill the dream of their late father, Jim Chosay. Their dad was a volunteer firefighter who loved serving people in the community, Goodman says, and he wanted to bring people together.
“My dad passed away from colon cancer 15 years ago,” she says, but before he died, he wanted to buy the Roadside Inn in Pinconning and cook for people. “He wanted to name it the Tipsy Cow.”
Goodman tweaked the name to honor a close friend – she calls him a second dad – whose nickname is Cowboy.
Their mom has the same goals as her late husband.
“She’s 77 years old, retired and doesn’t need to do anything, but just loves to do it,” says Goodman. “She loves to bring people in and have the camaraderie and the friendships in the community.”
Five years ago, a mom and her two daughters bought an out-of-the-way eatery in Pinconning. It's now a popular destination for food and camaraderie.
Despite being an out-of-the-way eatery (it’s about 1 ½ miles west of I-75), Goodman says the business thrived during COVID-19 pandemic closures and restrictions. She says they’re grateful to the people who drove sometimes 25 miles or more for take-out.
“A lot of the people that did come and get take-out had never heard of us before, but most people just wanted to get out and drive somewhere,” she says.
Once they discovered the handmade food, many of those travelers have become regulars.
When they bought the place five years ago, Goodman and her sister wanted to keep their father’s legacy alive.
“We’re just a little small outfit that’s a hidden gem in northern Bay County,” Goodman says, and like their dad, they want to be that “quaint little area to bring people together and to meet new people who stop by.”
A complete menu and take-out information are available on the Tipsy Cowboy website.