Restaurant Phase: Brainstorming.

Discussion in 'General Discussion' started by rrainstar, Jan 6, 2014.

  1. I've been in the food service industry my entire adult life and have done just about every job both in the kitchen and out of the kitchen you can possibly imagine. I've been doing a lot of thinking lately (and some dreaming) and I have decided that I will eventually open my own restaurant that will have a strong Barbecue focus. I am in the process of drafting my dream menu which I will probably pare down to what I know is feasible.From my experience, some of the best ideas and products that I've had have been inspired by customer feedback. On that note, who better to ask a few simple questions about barbecue than you fine folks here. I am not looking for advice yet. . .just some input on a few short questions; In your opinion,What food item(s) do you think is essential for a barbecue joint to have? What would be something you would like to see on a menu? What is the best dish (main,side, dessert, whatever), you've ever had from a barbecue restaurant? Are you open to Barbecue methods from around the world or do you prefer more regionalized american styles? Other than Barbecue and smoked meats what is your favorite type of cuisine and why?

    I appreciate any feedback whatsoever and I thank you in advance for taking the time.
  2. pops6927

    pops6927 Smoking Guru Staff Member Moderator Group Lead OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    There are "the staples" - pork spareribs, briskets, sausages, chickens.  Some prefer beef ribs vs. pork ribs.  We have a restaurant here that does "all you can eat" beef ribs which are smoked and mopped in a few varieties.  They are ok to good, tending to be tough or chewy,bur I prefer pork spareribs, full cut not St. Louis.  One chain here does them that way and are very successful.

    briskets are mostly sliced with good smoke ring, and also chopped.  Sausages are usually 3 or 4 varieties, with or without sauce.  Chickens are ½'s or ¼'s, flavor-brined.  A great cole slaw is a requirement!  Usually mashed potatoes or cold chopped potato salad w/skins and a great baked bean recipe too.

    Here's some good BBQ places in Fort Worth:   single establishment only   single establishment only‎‎

    That's just a few!
  3. hambone1950

    hambone1950 Master of the Pit Group Lead

    IMO , if you are a BBQ joint you gotta have all the things pops pulled pork and pulled chicken..and I will add cornbread , biscuits and Mac n cheese , and plain old hot dogs for fussy kids. .......and good chili.
  4. radio

    radio Smoking Fanatic

    I prefer my sauce served on the side and not mopped on the meats.  The best beans I ever had was a small joint way out in the country and he added pulled pork and simmered them for extra flavor.  He also trimmed the meat really well, so you didn't get gobs of fat on your plate like some joints I've eaten at.  The place don't need to be fancy, just offer consistently good food and even better service

    If you decide to take the plunge, I wish you success[​IMG]
  5. jarjarchef

    jarjarchef Master of the Pit OTBS Member

  6. noboundaries

    noboundaries Smoking Guru OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    What food item(s) do you think is essential for a barbecue joint to have?  Brisket (sliced and chopped), chicken quarters or halves, pulled pork (I rate BBQ joints by their pulled pork and their brisket), sausage (mild and hot), cole slaw (cream, vinegar, or both), potatoes (fries, mashed, salad), beans, mac n' cheese, bread or buns people would talk about to their grandchildren, and BBQ sauces people like me would want to buy by the case.

    What would be something you would like to see on a menu?  You (and me) are in California so sweet smoked salmon could be a biggie.

    What is the best dish (main, side, dessert, whatever), you've ever had from a barbecue restaurant?  I remember having BBQ at a place in Chattanooga, TN in the 70s called Bea's where the food was served family style at round tables from a big Lazy Susan in the middle of the table.  On that table was pulled pork BBQ among other things like fried chicken, fried okra, fried catfish (I sense a theme) and a gooey peach cobbler that to this day is one of my favorite taste memories of living in the South.  (Holy crap, I just Googled Bea's and it is still in business!!!!  Watched a video on YouTube!  Thanks for the living memory!)

    Are you open to Barbecue methods from around the world or do you prefer more regionalized american styles?  Love Jamaican Jerk.  My wife just said the other day, "Find a Jamaican Jerk recipe and make it."  There was a place here in Sacramento several years ago that served only Jamaican Jerk BBQ but it was mismanaged and went OB even though it was always packed.

    Other than Barbecue and smoked meats what is your favorite type of cuisine and why?  Anything international (Mexican, Chinese, Vietnamese, Thai, German, Italian, Persian, etc).  We love the variety.
  7. Well what an exciting endeavor for you!

    I'd love it if restaurants had more minimalistically arranged/prepared healthful albeit fabulous options, like grilled or smoked fish and seafood that isn't all gunked up with butter, a sugary sauce, tons of salt brine and so forth. (Simple, fresh as ever, plump and succulent fish, grilled with just lovely oil, herbs, etc.).

    To order something presumably "clean" when out to eat, like ahi tuna for example, and then find out that it had a soy sauce with sugar added and thus some fancy but non-healthy "glaze" all over it, and/or extra salt and things "snuck into the menu" which would have been so pure and fabulous at home; is a disappointment.

    To order a simple steak and learn that it was basted with butter before it even hit the grill, is tragic, (to me), when I can make a fine one at home that isn't adulterated with such things.

    I know most consumers don't care about that, and want all sauce to mask the fish and so forth. But in my humble mad-cow, or "mad-conch" opinion, I'd love to see fresh and simple things, in their purest forms, done beautifully in a restaurant.

    Here's wishing you incredible success!!!!!!!!!!

    Cheers! - Leah
  8. shakyleg

    shakyleg Fire Starter

    Whatever you decide to do good luck to you. It could take years of planning to perfect your "niche". When most people see a new BBQ joint pop up they give it ONE shot and make their decision if they will return or even recommend the place to others. BBQ places come an go here in TX and its a shame really. Your background in the business gives you an advantage but don't shortcut yourself. You got some good advice from others already just don't forget the stuffed baked taters!

    Good luck to you, there's no such thing as too many BBQ places!!

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