start a small bbq business

Discussion in 'General Discussion' started by zardrel, Aug 25, 2014.

  1. zardrel

    zardrel Fire Starter

    howdy every1 im 17, and i been bbq since i was about 14 and i want to know how to start a really small bbq business pls help btw im in va
    Last edited: Aug 25, 2014
  2. knifebld

    knifebld Smoking Fanatic

    You might want to give a bit more details bud...small could be a lemonade stand type setup in front of your driveway! LOL

    You looking at a mobile setup, small restaurant, catering??
  3. oldschoolbbq

    oldschoolbbq Smoking Guru OTBS Member

    Zardel , where are you , please add this your profile../

    Business ? Check your local restrictions , Laws , certifications , license , and regulations .

    More to it than just start.

    Good luck though and  .  .  .
  4. Good luck with that venture.  Make sure you follow ALL applicable laws and get the correct permits.  Some more info would help us out though.  I notice that most of your posts ask a VERY generalized question with not much research by you and then when we answer you never offer additional info.  This is a 2 way street here.....not just us members shooting info your way with no help from you. 

    Just an observation

  5. zardrel

    zardrel Fire Starter

    well in va, i know i have to have a licence to start selling food, but what im asking is , what are the nessesary supplies, what ares some tips, i want a small trailer to sell bbq in, and i  can move the trailer and stuff to different locations and what not
  6. welshrarebit

    welshrarebit Master of the Pit

    I would recommend you go and learn the ropes with someone else for a couple of years. Then go out on your own. Better yet go to culinary school!
  7. squirrel

    squirrel Master of the Pit OTBS Member

    I went to culinary school and while I certainly learned a lot, I would recommend you find a bbq place or two and work there for a couple of years. There's a lot more to it than cooking and selling bbq. First thing you should do is sign up for ServSafe classes and pass the exam. All restaurants are required to have at least one person that is ServSafe certified. If you can't get past the health inspector you ain't going no where. Not to mention, having your restaurant closed down because you didn't follow the law is not a good thing. BUT most important is knowing how to serve safe food so you don't get someone sick.

    There are certain restrictions in certain states when using ''unconventional'' cooking methods. For example, you may be required to have your smoker enclosed in a building with wire screen. There's also this thing called HAASP plans that you may be required to do. If you are only 17 you have time to learn the ropes from some wise folks that have been around the block a few times. Not only do you need to learn what TO do, you need to learn what NOT to do. Definitely get the ServSafe book and start studying, then find a location that gives the test. Find a bbq place that will show you the ropes, keep your mouth shut and your ears open.
    marauder and magnus like this.
  8. zardrel

    zardrel Fire Starter

    ive done some culinary arts stuff and attended classes, ive been bbq for a while(im old school) i just want to know how and what to serve and schedule to cook and serve for most
  9. Ok well I will say that people have given you some good advice, but it still seems you just want everyone to make your menu, schedule your open and closing times, help you set up your shopping lists etc.  Sorry if I seem like a grump but they are giving you some great advice and you seem to be ignoring it a bit.

    We can't make your menu or tell you how to cook for how many people  and what people in your area will want to eat.  That has to be YOUR call. 

    I personally think you are going to get in over your head but again that is a choice you must make yourself. 

    Rant off

  10. zardrel

    zardrel Fire Starter

    well i took it into consideration, and im going to get my servesafe first, then i will move from there
  11. Now it sounds like you are thinking!!!   Look I love that you are motivated.....don't get me wrong......but I make what I think (and friends and family too) is GREAT BBQ.....but I don't think I could make it a business.   It's a lot of work. My father owned 3 restaurants and my brother and I are pretty damn good cooks, but he about Shi* when we told him we were planning on opening a restaurant.  We thought it over and decided that Dad was right.  Long hours and a huge chance of failure. 

  12. squirrel

    squirrel Master of the Pit OTBS Member

    I think you are a smart young man. If you are really serious about this I will be more than happy to mentor you through ServSafe. I scored 96 on the exam and I take it very seriously. I'm even considering becoming a ServSafe instructor. Do some research on ServSafe and come back and tell me what you have found out. The book is expensive. If you do research and prove to me that you have done it, I will send you a free book and help you pass the exam. 
    padronman and magnus like this.
  13. Now that's a very Generous offer.  Squirell is Da Man!!!  [​IMG]
  14. welshrarebit

    welshrarebit Master of the Pit

    Last edited: Aug 25, 2014
  15. oldschoolbbq

    oldschoolbbq Smoking Guru OTBS Member

    And , you'll need a boat load of money.....[​IMG]
  16. Contact local caterers.  Have samples of sliced brisket and pulled pork available when you meet with them (meet with meat). Have a price schedule with you (price that scales down as volume goes up).  Have your frozen samples vacuum sealed, with a water bath to rapidly bring them up to serving temperature.  You want to show them how easy it is to store, prep and get to a safe temperature with your product.  This way, your cost to start is smaller (smoker, vacuum sealer, heated water bath at 170F).  By limiting the scope of your start up, you control costs to enter the market.  It can be attractive for a caterer to provide another product line to their offering.  This is especially true if it requires no significant addition of equipment (or skill set) on their part.
    Last edited: Aug 26, 2014
    magnus likes this.
  17. zardrel

    zardrel Fire Starter

    im definiately going to do my research on servesafe, and do my best thank you, i will let you know
  18. rob sicc

    rob sicc Smoking Fanatic Group Lead

    I think the best idea (though all great suggestions) was to try and apprentice with someone for a few years.  You sound like you feel you have the cooking side down but do you know anything about budgeting or all of the additional costs to run a business.  Lets not forget the price of insurance just to mention one.  I may be going over the top but I just wanted to add more for you to think about.

    I wish you the best of luck.
  19. dcarch

    dcarch Smoking Fanatic

    Do they even allow a 17 year old to sell cooked food?

    Can a 17 year old drive a truck?

  20. zardrel

    zardrel Fire Starter

    im not having a food truck, and my business will be started once im out of school. and i have a licences so i can drive pick up with trailer

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