The Goatlips Legend

Straight from the Head Goat's mouth by Larry Cowan 

(inspiration by Marsha Surprenant)


An old building snuggled in between many large oaks had just the right character left in it to inspire a neighborhood deli, grill and pub. Located just outside the front gate of an old Navy training helicopter field, the converted 3500 employee industrial park provided a perfect business niche for lunch. The University of West Florida, West Florida Hospital, Baptist Medical Park and surrounding neighborhoods provided the dinner house and pub niche. My previous background in restaurant development, real estate and business brokerage was all good experience to proceed, but I needed something more … something passionate. The passion and more is Marsha Surprenant! Her discipline for quality food, cleanliness, friendly service and people skills are the secret ingredients that every business needs to be successful.


Where did the metaphor come from that inspired the name? My friend, Billy, would always encourage me with the old southern slang saying used by an Episcopal Priest, Betts, to calm people during anxious times. “Don't worry! It’s going to come together like Goat Lips.". As President of the West Florida Advertising Federation, I used the saying in my monthly newsletter article to encourage my board of directors. I embellished the article with the following words: I'm not sure that the Beatles were thinking about Goat Lips when they wrote their song, but in the words of Lennon and McCartney, "Come Together Right Now." Just "Imagine" the possibilities! My board member and immediate Past President nicknamed me Goat Lips and he double dog dared me to name the business Goat Lips Deli. The rest is history!


Goat Lips is a deli by day with a large selection of specialty sandwiches, homemade soups and great tasting salads. At night, Goat Lips adds a dinner house menu serving meat loaf, pot roast, mashed potatoes, chicken parmesan, nightly specials and more. Goat Lips also features a Sport's Pub serving over 40 different beers. Visit for menu, current contact info and links.


A plaque hanging on the Deli's wall was given to me at the end on my year as president of the club. The plaque features a picture of a goat sitting in his cabana chair with legs crossed and sipping on a drink with the inscribed words, "It really came together this year."


So from the Head Goat at Goat Lips Chew and Brewhouse … order, sit back and enjoy!