SmoQue House opened Sept. 8 of last year, but this year will be its first serving customers the Southern summer staple — smoked ribs, pulled pork, brisket and meats galore with sides and sweets.
Derrick Eason, the owner and operator of the business, considers himself to be a barbecue connoisseur, who started barbecuing as a teenager.
“I have been barbecuing for more than 20 years,” he said. “As a teenager, I started [barbecuing] with my uncle in Birmingham, Ala. He owned a barbecue restaurant there.”
Eason spent his summers toiling away at the restaurant, learning techniques, broadening the tools of the trade and deepening his love for meat cooked on the grill or slow smoked.
He soon began hosting cookouts with his friends on the weekends and when he entered the workforce, he sold barbecue plates to co-workers.
Selling those plates, despite the popularity in his workplace, became intense as more and more colleagues requested his signature smoked ribs.
“It got to the point that people got tired of plates and wanted entire slabs of ribs,” he said. “I was selling 20 or 30 slabs of ribs at work, per day, at one point.”
Friends, family and co-workers encouraged Eason to take a step out in faith and pursue his own barbecue restaurant, since he so effortlessly prepared delicious barbecue.
That effort became a reality in September when SmoQue House opened its doors to the residents of Stockbridge.
Patrons will find a wide variety of meat on the menu, such as beef brisket, pulled pork, chicken, smoked sausages and jerk turkey breasts, all which are smoked at differing lengths of time on a combination of apple and hickory wood.
Collard greens, potato salad, baked beans, corn on the cob and Brunswick stew are a few of the side items that can accompany any barbecued pick.
Their barbecue sauce, concocted from a secret recipe, is also a featured item.
“The base of the sauce is a vinegar and Worchester sauce,” he said. “We also add citrus and different seasonings. We take pride in doing it ourselves. We don’t use any bottle.”
Pride, passion and precision are key to what happens at SmoQue House BBQ, the standard that has fueled Eason’s love of barbecue and what he hopes will keep them a mainstay in the Stockbridge community.
The restaurant is open Tuesday through Saturday, 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. and closed on Sunday and Monday.
SmoQue House BBQ is at 1375 Rock Quarry Road, Suite 202, in Stockbridge.
Information: (678) 814-4868 or www.smoquehousebbq.com.