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I just drove 120 miles round trip to visit a BBQ restaurant I had heard was good, and had seen mentioned here on the pro forums a few times, Checkered Pig in MArtinsville/Danville VA. They are know for their ribs, and I got kind of curious when I heard they sold something like 17,000 racks in a five day period at Best Of The West last year.

Well folks, it was good. Matter of fact, it was really good. Best ribs I've ever had in a restaurant. And brisket was exceptional as well. So if you ever find yourself in that part of VA, stop in. And no, they're not family or anything like that.

Checkered Pig
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Well,that's nice to hear,and we'll pass it on to Tommy.They are always pleasant and helpful to others.

They run a large scale vending operation ,at the same event they compete in{Todd can tell you what managing the 30 extra hired hands for four days and dealing with all the local inspection depts. can do for your blood pressure Roll Eyes]

Often,it is a requirement of the organizer to do both-so they make double money. MadThey are also running their cater and restaurants by cell phone.

Todd is one of the few of us that can appreciate this splitting your focus-successfully.

At large regional cookoffs,there is extra consideration/money given to the cooks from that region,that have the higher placements.

Tommy, usually, wins the top placing team from the Carolinas.[Tough ,when the other teams aren't feeding a few thousand]

These contests will draw top comp teams from half the country.

Also good,to see Todd up and kickin'.
Originally posted by Tom:
They are also running their cater and restaurants by cell phone.

Also good,to see Todd up and kickin'.

Glad to be up and kickin'. Taking delivery of a new cooking rig next week to replace one that got stolen last month. (Anybody in the south with a trailer mounted cooker, watch it very carefully. The police say they are disappearing at an alarming rate.)

Tommy is fortunate to have an incredible staff. He apparently takes his restaurant staff to events on a rotating basis, and the experience shows. My waitress today, that I questioned at length BTW, knew more about the prep and cooking of BBQ than most restaurant owners I've met recently. And she knew the equipment they used and the wood, etc. If I could imagine having a staff like his, I might consider opening another restaurant.

Another table heard me asking all of my questions, and they mentioned that they remembered Tommy from back in the early '90's when he'd go to nearby Martinsville Speedway and sell ribs in the parking lot with just a pull behind cooker and a cooler. They seemed to have a lot of hometown pride in his success, now with two restaurants. He's doing it right for sure. Nice, clean, well run restaurants, and apparently a vending business doing well too.

I'm signed up to do chicken and ribs at Charlotte in May for the NASCAR race, so I hope I can do it as well as Tommy, since this will be my first venture into vending in many years.

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