Irving Family Business Selling Spoonful of Luck for the New Year

Eating black-eyed peas on New Year's is considered good luck by some. It's the foundation of Po Melvin's restaurant in Irving

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At Po Melvin's in Irving, luck doesn't come in a pot of gold at the end of a rainbow. It comes in a pot of black-eyed peas.

"The black-eyed peas bring you money," said Melvin LeMane III, owner of Po Melvin's. "So hopefully, this year it pays off for me because it's gotta get better."

That is probably what a lot of people are feeling after the past couple of years of living through a pandemic.

"You see it every day on the news," LeMane said. "You're constantly reminded of how fortunate you are to have your health."

LaMane's father, Melvin LaMane II, started Po Melvin's in 1981, selling black-eyed peas from a concession truck. By 1984 they were at the State Fair of Texas.

"That propelled us into the restaurant business," LaMane said. "So we've been very blessed and we are blessed by black-eyed peas."

By some accounts, the superstition or tradition in America of eating black-eyed peas for luck started in the Civil War South.

"It's the gravy that our peas are cooked in is what makes our peas so unique," LaMane said.

LaMane said he can't remember a year when he didn't have black-eyed peas to ring in the New Year for good luck, with cornbread for good measure.

"Cornbread brings gold," LaMane said. "I'm waiting for that one big payoff. Come Saturday night, I'm gonna go buy a lottery ticket and hope for the best."

For the first time in 34 years, Po Melvins will be open on New Year's Eve and New Year's Day for people to get their spoonsful of good luck. You can find their New Year's menu here.

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