WOW Catering in Eclectic is a true family affair with a long lineage of culinary talent and the name inspired by owners Deangelo and Davetta Zeigler’s 12-year-old daughter, Anaiyah.

“We were at home one day trying to come up with a name for the business, and our little girl said, ‘Why don’t you call it Wow? That’s what everyone says when they taste your food!’” said Davetta. “So it stuck. She loves that she was a part of the process.”

WOW Catering opened its brick-and-mortar location in January but has been cooking for a variety of events around the area for more than two years. Located on Main Street in downtown Eclectic, WOW Catering offers Southern contemporary-style cuisine that is a reflection of the Zeiglers and their family’s history and passion for food.

Zeigler received a culinary degree from Trenholm State Community College in Montgomery but has been exposed to cooking his entire life.

“My grandmother would cook breakfast, lunch and dinner every single day,” he said. “When I was young, I started helping her out. She was actually the first one to teach my how to grill.”

Davetta also was exposed to cooking and catering from her grandmother, who worked until the day she died at 96 years old.

“She did it all,” said Zeigler. “And she taught us both a lot about the business and cooking. Sometimes what I thought I knew, she would tell me how to do it the right way.”

Zeigler worked at various fine-dining restaurants in Montgomery and Auburn before realizing it was time to venture out on his own. He began catering for events at Tangarray Event Venue and formed a relationship with owner Rita Falk.

“It was Miss Rita who really pushed me to open a location,” he said. “She asked if I would ever consider opening my own business. She got me in touch with the owner of this building; and that was that.”

The corner building at 35 Kowaliga Rd. has been used for various restaurants in the past, so the Zeiglers didn’t have to do much renovating – just some painting and adding the proper kitchen equipment.

The Zeiglers have hit the ground running, and the community has fully embraced their presence.

“The community has shown great support,” said Davetta. “They have really accepted us with open arms. We feel like we’ve lived here forever.”

The couple moved to the Redland area and couldn’t be happier with their new location.

The restaurant is open Mondays from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. for lunch and Tuesdays through Fridays from 11 a.m. to 8 p.m. for lunch and dinner.

“We have some regulars already that come in every single day,” said Zeigler. “And Friday nights, we have a line out the door and a pretty long wait time.”

As a result, he recommends making reservations, which can be done on the Facebook page, WOW Catering LLC., or by calling 334-639-0010. Their full seating capacity is 49.

While there is a set main menu – including wings, burgers, steak, pasta – Zeigler also whips up lunch and dinner specials throughout the week. Those that secure the most accolades from clients get added to that main menu.

“My food is a twist of Southern, but I really can do a little bit of everything,” he said.

The weekends are reserved for catering events, and almost every one is already booked through the end of the year.

While down time is difficult to come by in this business, the Zeiglers embrace their Sundays with their children, Anaiyah and Deangelo Jr., who is 8 years old.

“That’s our family time,” said Davetta. “We let the kids play waiter. It’s an experience for the whole family.”

The children love being around the restaurant atmosphere and can’t wait to be old enough to help out. The kids also eat well and say their favorite food is steak and Caesar salad.

“The kids absolutely love to cook. And they won’t eat fast food. They both say they want to be a chef just like Daddy when they grow up,” said Zeigler. “As long as they’re happy, we’re happy.”

Deangelo and Davetta have been together for 12 years and married for nine. The dynamic pair has a seamless working relationship and really enjoys their new path.

“I couldn’t imagine doing this with anyone else,” said Davetta, who was previously a bakery manager at Walmart for more than a decade.

“It’s not often you find someone who shares the same passions about food,” said Zeigler.

While they’re still getting their feet wet with a new restaurant, the Zeiglers’ dream of opening a food truck some day and a second location in the River Region.

“We have a lot of customers that travel over here to eat. I’d like to open a closer location for them,” said Zeigler. “It’s true though, people will travel for good food.”

For more information about the restaurant or catering options, visit the Wow Catering LLC Facebook page.