Thursday, August 31, 2006


Got here to Juneau yesterday, getting on the float plane here in a few minutes. Lord willing we'll be on the water in an hour and a half. We're fishing for Halibut & Salmon at in Elfin Cove. This is the little vacation we needed in front of opening this joint up. Bo has gone to an orchard for a couple of days with some amigos to stock pile apple wood for us. Next week things really, really pick up....I'll probably be announcing the open date after the variance meeting & beer board meeting.

Monday, August 28, 2006

Update & more tomatoes

Got a lot done today but the post is not going to sound too exciting. The picture is a bunch of our heirloom tomatoes we picked. I've got 30 different varieties.....salads, marinara, salsa's are all off the charts! Reds, pinks, orange, yellow......all different colors. I've got some late sweet corn about to come in directly. Nothing like growing your own food! Anyway, Bo and I spent the morning finalizing the menu. Its still not finalized but its close enought that I feel good about it. Having Bo on board with me is really going to enable me to offer a little bit of variety to the menu to compliment the BBQ. A lot of the other items, actually a big chunk of the other items come out of the smoker and are BBQ related. There are other things on there that have got a little culinary creativity to them and are southern items. I've basically been writing down my "wish list" menu and then leaving it up to him whether or not it goes on the menu or not. If he tells me no problem I can handle that in the "rush" then it goes on, if there is any hesitation then it more than likely goes to the potential daily specials, any other reaction it goes out the window. So far we've only chunked a couple of items. I'm real pleased with the menu so far, I think its very appealing and very manageable. I'm more excited about getting a little creative with things to make us different and give it a little edge. The sign is going up on Wedensday from Jason at SignGraphix in Cool Springs. Ward Boone's band (yes his uncle is Pat Boone) has agreed to play two sets every friday night. Ward is very, very good and I'm very excited about him being a regular. The guy is a real talent! The band "SweetLeaf" (Bo's band), when they have time, will be leading a Saturday night "in the round" with invited songwriters/singers to play......all acoustic. They are are very good and are really starting to turn a few heads on music row. They just picked up a weekly gig down near "On the Rocks" every thursday night. As a matter of fact, it may be "On the Rocks" where the gig is.....cant remember. Working on a bluegrass band and blues band to play also. Its hard to believe that Lord willing we'll be opening the doors in a little less than a month.

Yesterdays cook

Yesterday afternoon I ran a cook on the pit. I cooked six slabs of baby's for Michael Blankinships church group, some sausage and a small brisket flat. Ribs were cooked well. I still dont have my sausage maker so I bought some polish sausage at Sam's. Polish is traditionally a mix of pork and beef. I rub some of my "BigHoss" rub on the outer casings and throw it on the pit. The sausage brand that I used yesterday had a weird flavor to it that I didnt care for all that much. I can't really put my finger on what it is I'm talking about but it left an aftertaste. I plan on using that in some gumbo here soon Lord willing. The brisket was very good, which was a little surprising because it was the "flat"........and a very small flat (around 4lbs). The brisket is made up of two seperate muscles, the flat and the fat cut or triangle cut. Its THE toughest part of the cow. I loaded the picture so you could have an idea as to where it is. I prefer to cook a brisket like I do a pork shoulder......whole. But yesterday was just another test run to continue to "season" the pit so I just cooked this little flat to add another cut of meat in the pit. I was pretty pleased. Today & tomorrow will be pretty busy tying up loose ends before Martha and I head off to Alaska to fish on Wedensday. Bo's going to be manning this ship while I'm gone, and he'll probably do a little posting on the blog.

Sunday, August 27, 2006


Well the new paint looks awsome and really makes the place look like a whole new building. Yesterday we, actually Bo & our mexican amigo Adan, started moving tables & chairs back in the joint. While they were doing that Michael & I were framing in where the fountain drink machine is going to be. After everyone left I noticed a little mark on the floor where the paint had been scratched a little. Yeah thats going to happen but when I felt the paint it was as if it never really adhered to the surface. We ran a laquer thinner over the old paint so I dont understand. I do have some fear that the money I just spent was wasted and that I'll have to remove the existing paint and paint it again. You wanna talk about something that would piss me off!?!?! The good news is that the front looks good, I'll post some pics later on. I need to get this dilemma figured out quick. This week (Wed.) Martha & I are going to Alaska to fish through the weekend. I need to get the plumber in there while I'm gone and start cleaning that filthy kitchen out. The commercial cleaning service is coming next week to clean it and we need to have it ready for them. Bo will be manning the ship while I'm gone.......We've got a ways to go before opening and it is really stressing me out!

Wednesday, August 23, 2006

New Paint.

Not even going to say much here because the before/after pictures speak for themselves.......and its not even a "true" before & after until i get it all done in there (construction), but you get the idea. We're painting the outside tomorrow so i'll have pics of that to add. I was a little afraid of the color combo but after its on i like it......a lot! Place will really look good finished & decorated. I also went and spent about $2000.00 for kitchen equipment (and there's more to come let me tell you) and dropped $1700.00 for shirts & caps with Nick Mathews @Doug Mathews Team Sports. Nick, his brother Tate & Tommy Bethel all work over there and are all buddies of mine and dang good guys. I'll do a specific post on shirt/cap pick up day. The shirts & caps are going to look good.

Tuesday, August 22, 2006

Stuart Johnson.....the former & FUTURE Mayor of Fairview!

Well today I went over and bought all the paint for the painters tomorrow. About $200.00 odd bucks worth of paint. The guy that runs the Franklin Porter Paint store is Mayoral candidate Stuart Johnson. Stuart is running for Mayor of Fairview and should win in dadgum landslide! Wish more of us lived in the 'view so we could vote for ole' Stu. The guy next to him is Daryl the painter. Ole' Daryl is one of the old timers that hangs at Stu's store in Franklin. The guy is a great guy and has got ONE........and I repeat ONE.... single tooth in his entire head.........and smiles at you like a dentist! Its the front right tooth on the top......and that one tooth is massive! Love guys like that......the "dont give a damn" type. He told me he lost all of his teeth chewing tobacco and fightin', AND then he proceeded to tell me his "old lady" likes his single tooth better than a mouthful! I tried like hell to get him to smile real big for the camera but he wouldnt.....I'm telling you when he smiles real big the guy looks like he's trying to suck on a tombstone. Like one singel tusk hanging out of his mouth. I am dead serious when I say that Its guys like Daryl that make the south great!!!

Monday, August 21, 2006

The flags' been dropped........go,go,go,go,go!

Today the loan was finalized and I now have access to the money. Everything just went from 1st gear to 5th gear in regards to projects. I can now "turn the dogs loose" so to speak. This afternoon I gave the green light to the painters & plumbers. Tomorrow I'll start the purchasing of equipment needed. Slow down hoss's & hoss-ette's........we're not going out to spend money just to be spending money, but it is exciting to really & truly put this train on the dad-gum tracks (financially speaking). This should be an interesting week in regards to progress.

Saturday, August 19, 2006

Looking to the dugout for the steal sign to 2nd base

Overall I'd say I was pretty pleased with the first run today. Baby's turned out real well in regards to texture & taste. We've still got some "gettin' to know each other'n" to accomplish. It'll be a few cooks before I get my feel for the intake air etc. to regulate my temperature on a consistent basis. Today I tried to pull a couple of tricks on her and it didnt work. What kind of tricks? Things like positioning my coals in order of size, layering wood, etc.. But I'm not worried about it......we're just feeling each other out right now. Its like that time back around middle school when you were fooling around with a girl. Your on 1st base with the big sloppy french kiss, but if you want to get to 2nd base you've got to get real creative or do it her way. One way or the other we'll get to 2nd base before too long!

The "Pit"!

Well here she is. Took me & Bo all day but we got her home safe & sound. I would have cranked her up last night but I was too dang tired to do so. She is awsome! Its weird for me to be cooking on one of these shiney, stainless Ole Hickory Pits. I am used to a good ol' dull, black off-set stickburner or a traditional brick pit. But the effeciency these things have are pretty impressive. They are so well insulated. The temperature consistency in the chamber (where the food is) is almost as good as a brick pit, and thats what I wanted to mimic......our brick pit in Mississippi. I've been thinking for days as to what I'll name it. Every real pit has to have a name because a pit, as far as I'm concerned, it is a living, breathing being. A pitmaster & his pit have got to be on the same page all the time, got to be able to talk to each other........buddies. The name I have givin this pit is "Miss Hattie", in honor of the late Miss Hattie Mullins from Tuscumbia, AL. There are several reasons I gave the pit this name.......I wont bore you with them, but she was a woman of class, a true southern lady! This morning I cranked her up with a dry run (no food in the pit) and the temp held very well, just as I suspected it would. Just put in 3 slabs of baby backs for a short cook (4 hours or so). I personally dont like to cook baby's near as much as spare ribs, but I opted for baby's because I'll be able to cook them in four hours instead of 7 (give or take) for the spares. We're just trying to get to know each other so I'll probably cook baby's for the next couple of days or so before I throw the shoulders, briskets etc. on her. With it being 93 degrees today I should be able to get at least 7-8 hours for my burn time (amount of time it holds the temperature without adding coals/wood). I would like to see it get maybe 10 hours if it can, we'll just wait and see. I am like a five year old on christmas day.

1st newspaper ad

Very generic ad to start but I had to get something in there. John McCall is doing my ad stuff for me so everything should get pretty creative in regards to text & quirky pictures.

Friday, August 18, 2006

Westbound and Down

Bo and I are westbound and down headed to Cape Girardeau, MO to pick up the back this afternoon with an updated post...

Thursday, August 17, 2006

Ol' lead foot is back baby!

Yesterday I had to go get my license reinstated (forgot to pay a speeding ticket and they suspended my license). Had to pay $157.00 for the ticket in Franklin, pay the state $65.00 to reinstate, had to go down town (load of fun) and pay $8.00 to get a new copy of my birth certificate because I cant find my original (need that for the D.M.V.) then go pay $23.00 to get my license reinstated. Bad news is that I learned the hard way that procrastination can get expensive. Good news is now that I have a valid license again, I dont have to fret about driving under the speed limit for fear of being pulled over and arrested......I can speed again!!!! Cant wait to pull that lead boot out of the closet and slip it on again! Also met with some contractors to get a bid on screening in the side shed where the cooker is going to be. Today we're cooking sauce to zero-out the weight of each ingredient. I have to calculate each weight so the co-packer who will be mixing & bottling the sauce gets the recipe exactly right. Tomorrow we're west-bound & down to Cape Girardeau, MO to pick up the pit......but dont worry boys, I should be back in time for Bosco's! And dont worry Martha, that means we'll be going to dinner tomorrow night after Bosco's.

Tuesday, August 15, 2006

All over the place today

The day started with Bo and I going to a two hour food safety class (which I might add was supposed to be just an hour) at the health department in Franklin. Jeff Hill is our inspector and he just happened to be the environmentalist teaching the class. It wasnt too bad really, glad we went. I then had to rush Bo back to get to work in the joint while I took off to "climb up on top" of Mt. Juliet, TN to meet with a new co-packer. I have added a picture of Tommy & Sue from Tennessee Gourmet and Dennis from Deacon's Salsa. Dennis has got a commercial kitchen and he has teamed up with Tennessee Gourmet to expand. They are the perfect size for what I am looking to do right now in regards to amount. I'm going to be spending the next few days firming up my recipes so I can give them the information needed so they can give me a quote. The sauces I've been using for so many years are tied up with me and John McCall in another project we're working on (Martin McCall's). I want to be loyal to John with those sauces so I am developing new sauces for the joint......but really not all that different because they are based off those recipes. Hopefully this new relationship will be something within the budget I have set for the joint. They were, and hopefully will continue to be, a big help to me. They have done very well with their products and I will lean on (and pay) them for guidance to help us get the sauces off the ground.

Monday, August 14, 2006

On your mark, get set.........

Got the info back from the banker. It was very good......but at the same time very unsettling. Why? I dont know why because they gave me exactly what I asked for. I think that adding up all my monthly costs (doing break-even analysis) was sobering. I had a clear idea as to what I was going to be looking at but hearing from the banker and seeing the costs on paper was surreal. Hearing from Brad (the banker) was almost symbollic because I've known for almost 3 weeks what the loan terms were probably going to be. It was symbollic in the sense that, "o.k., heres the dough.........make it happen". -Almost like a track meet and you could here the pistol go off. Time to start buying stuff..........but try to buy as little as possible and pay back the balance as fast as possible! Relatively speaking, my loan amount is not terribly much, its the term of the loan (only 18 months) that makes the monthly note so steep. And thats exactly the term I requested because I want to pay this note off quick. I'll think about it today, I may request that the term to be pushed out a tad farther, maybe an additional 6 months. When I say "steep" i mean the monthly note in additon to the other monthly costs. Just calculating the payment in addition to the monthly costs has brought my monthly breakeven to around $13,500 per month, and before its all said and done that will probably become more like $14,500. Thats total rent, food costs, beverage costs, payroll, insurance, etc.. For a simple bbq joint & grill that just seems like so much but maybe thats my own ignorance causing my fear. Now thats not counting any cash flow coming in at all. Thats assuming that not one soul comes through the doors to eat any food whatsoever. Thats assuming that I will never have any catering. Thats assuming that I sell no sauces, t-shirts or caps on the website. Obviously thats not going to happen but I have to look at it that way because its important for me to know "worst case scenario". Its all about surviving that note until the cash flow starts coming in to handle it. Anyway....I must admit that I'm not worried about people coming in to eat the food, what I am worried about is will enough people come in to eat the food in the time that I have to make this work, which is basically two years. Nolensville is growing so dang fast, they have approved so many new homes to be built out there. I have forcasted doing about $200,000 in year one. If we do that we'll make a "whopping" $30,000! -Not hardley a good enough reason to do something like this. BUT.......if we can do an additional $100,000 in year two for a total of $300,000 then this is worth staying around for. My current demographic is weighted on the construction crowd at lunch. That demographic will change drastically in 24 months because of future residents buying new homes within a two mile radius of the joint. by that time the dinner/take home crowd should really start to strengthen. If I can survive the first 12 months I think I will be fine.......but thats a "BIG" if! Oh in the long run we'll be fine........I'll still have my landscape business rolling to bring in money during the lean start up time, and Martha will still be working a little until maternity leave........but this is where my passion is and if this fails it will not only be a huge sting to us financially, but it could be a dream crusher. Without sounding dramatic, money can always be earned one way or the other...there's just too many dumb-asses in the world for any of us to have an excuse not to earn it - but when a dream gets beat down sometimes its hard to find the confidence to dream that dream again, and thats the biggest fear I have in regards to this not working. Where's an 80's glam-hair metal band singing in the background when you need them?

Cooking Hog

Been looking for old pig roast pictures at any of my old catering events or pig roasts we have on our farm in Mississippi. These pics were sent by Michael Blankinship......this is one of the pig roasts we had a couple of years back on my pit at the farm. Bo & I are going over the menu trying to firm that up this week. Ill post later today with todays progress.

Friday, August 11, 2006

Got A LOT done today.......with the help of some great buddies! Removed the partition wall I've been talking about. I took "before" pictures of it but forgot to take "after" pictures so I'll post that tomorrow. We framed in the kitchen expansion this afternoon. This is the area that the cooler, caps/T-shirts and register etc. will be. I was planning on attacking this thing myself but Michael Blankinship, Bryan "Ball" Chandler & Eric Lamb came out to help me. Let me give credit where credit is due.....Michael was a ga-dang lifesaver! If I had done this myself tonight would have been a late night and I would still be working on it tomorrow fixing what I screwed up today. His experience was a tremendous help. Bryan & Lamb were a big help too. Tomorrow I'll be doing some "Quickbooks" training from Jennifer Owens........Then God blesses us with his annual fall blessing.......the Titans start the season tomorrow night against the Saints (the "Ain'ts"). We've got 4 PSL's and I'll be taking the guys that helped me tonight.....and we'll be putting down some cold beers starting around 4:00. I plan on going through cold beer tomorrow night like Bruce Lee with a pair of nunchucks! Ill post another update for y'all Monday.

Thursday, August 10, 2006

Slowly but surely

Today the HVAC guys came and re-routed some ducts to help take some stress off the heating/air unit by circulating the air better. Took them about 1/2 the day. While they were doing that I did a little more demo work to the second and last partition wall I'm taking out. Its not much to demo but its got some electrical and water lines running through it. Tracy "Double Barrell" Jarrell came out this morning and took care of the electrical line for me, tomorrow I'll take care of the water lines. After I get that taken care of it wont take 30 minutes to finish up the demo work. Anyway while all that was going on the guys got the sidewalk and parking lot poured (concrete). I am not paying for that but its great timing. The owner is, shall we say, cleaning the property up.......with a little encouragement from the city of Nolensville. Works great for me because it should all be done right before I open up......which I might add is a day that I'm getting very, very close to firming up on. Should be posting the opening date in the next few days or so. Tomorrow if I have time after the rest of the demo work is done I'm going to go get the materials and I'm going to start framing up the kitchen expansion. I need for that to be finished by the end of next week in addition to the kitchen being cleaned up.....which may take some dynamite before its all said and done.

Wednesday, August 09, 2006

Bo has now jumped on this runaway train called Martin's Bar-B-Que Joint!

Here is my new "partner in crime/short order cook/sous chef".........Bo Collier. Bo comes at us with a ton of time in a kitchen, a lot of which was spent at two 4-star restaurants in the U.S. Virgin Islands. Bo is a dad-gum bonafide white redneck rastafarian! Yes you read that right, and he's dang proud of it........ which I think is great! He's back in Nashville spending some of his nights in a local band as their drummer.......which I might add is really starting to get some attention from those down on Music Row. They are very, very good. I'm excited to have Bo and the experience he brings to the table. As you know I have ZERO experience in a restaurant kitchen.........but I can cook BBQ with the best of them.......a little arrogant???? -well if I didnt feel that way then what in the hell should I be doing this for? Like Ted Williams said, "it ain't braggin' if you can do it." When I first ventured into this I realized I would have to have someone with Bo's experience to handle the other menu items that are not barbecue related.....specifically items that are cooked to order. I would fail miserably at this if I were stupid enough to go at this alone with no crunch time kitchen experience under my belt. Bo will be able to handle the rush. I'll have all the BBQ ready for him by 10:30 or so for him to prepare sandwiches or whatever. No, I have not solitified the menu yet......we'll probably do that over the next week or so but I plan on having a little (and I mean just a little!) variety to add in addition to the barbecue on the menu (fresh burgers etc.)........with as much of that variety coming from meat cooked on my pit to ease Bo's cook-to-order workload. Oh yeah....have you've noticed Bo's circa 1973 Charlie Daniels beard.......dont worry about getting one of Bo's beard hairs in your teeth.....he'll be wearing a beard net and hair net. Nor will you need to worry about any cigarette ashes from that cig in his mouth dropping in your "Q".....he wont be smoking over the food. This pic was taken just after we shook hands and celebrated with a drink.......coke & rum - Tortuga Vanilla rum brought to me by Michael Blankiship from the Caymens. Great stuff!!!!! Anyway......I'm dang glad to have ol Bo aboard!

Tuesday, August 08, 2006 need to cancel huh?

Before I get started let me encourage you to go rent "Strange Brew" and get a case of cold beer and watch of the very best ways to entertain yourself! Anyway...had three meetings set up for today in addition to submitting the business licence. First one was with the painters. Was (and still am) thinking of doing this myself with the help of my buddy Michael Blankinship, but I think I'm going to have these guys get it done. They bid me $1150.00 to paint the floor, porch/deck and trim. Its something I should do myself but at that price I get overcome real quick with the "lazy gene"...........cause painting sucks! Then the Coke guy came by and we talked about order #1 in a couple of weeks. Then I went to get a letter from the city of Nolensville for Williamson County saying they will allow me to operate within the city limits....lets all thank the good Lord we dont live in an area where we have to deal with any B.S. bureaucracy. Then I had a four hour training session set up at 1:00 for QuickBooks new Point of Sale system which allows me to have my computer, credit/debit card swiper & cash register all in sync. The *&%#*$ #!*@ canceled on me at 12:10......50 minutes before the session! I was pissed for about 2 minutes until I remembered I wanted to have Jennifer Owens get my business anyway! I had already set this appointment up when Jim "Frasier Crane" Owens (her husband) reminded me that his baby doll did the same thing....and I was ticked because I had forgotten that. Well I'm going to have her do it now........Everything has a way of working out. Tomorrow is a big day.......not the least of which I am giving the guy I hired to be the short order cook a try-out......should be fun.

Monday, August 07, 2006

More $$$ out the door

Paid my sign guy (SignGraphix in Cool Springs) $1852.25 today for two signs.....a 5' by 7' for the road and another 5' by 7' on the face of the building.........that stings a little. The sign would have cost about half of that if not for the brand new codes for Nolensville (a year and a half ago they did not even have codes!). Also paid my graphic artist today and sent my lawyer his dough. Tomorrow I am meeting with the painters, accountant and finishing up some more demo work.


First off let me say that you never, ever want to cook authentic bbq with briquette charcoal, you always want to use lump charcoal whether from the bag (can get expensive) or burning them down yourself in a furnace of some sort. Grilling on the other hand.......which is a completely different cooking process than the process of fine to use briquettes because the high heat burns off the impurities. I used the briquettes here because thats all I had on hand to illustrate to you what a coal basket is and does. You light a very small amount of coals and put them butted up on one end then fill the rest of the basket with unlit lump charcoal or wood (depending on your cooker). This basket you see here has been burning since 10:00 this morning and its now almost 2:00.....thats almost 4 hours with NO restriction on the airflow around it (obviously burns faster when the fire has access to all the air it wants). When this is put in a cooker with restrictive airflow intake you can get between 7-10 hours of burn time (depending on the seasons) without your temp moving hardly at all......which enables you to either sleep or make sweet love to your woman all night long, which ever you prefer that particular night in which you are cooking.....choices baby, choices! This design is for the Ole' Hickory model I'll be cooking on.......I am used to cooking on what we call an "off-set" or "stickburner". You want your basket to be in an "S" type shape for those so it will fit the square fire box.

Saturday, August 05, 2006

Clean, Clean, and Clean some more!

Not much to add today other than the fact my fingers look like prunes from washing (with my Mexican Amigo) every freakin' pot, pan, fork, etc.. in the place by hand! Took some time, really was not that bad......very glad we did it. I do not know how in the world the restaurant there before me operated in the filthy conditions they were operating in. Also we took the old signs down off the roof and out by the road. Finished taking all the horrendous art work (that they had painted by hand on every window in the place) off completely with razor blades. All thats left in regards to the demo work is removing/unconnecting the Coca-Cola fountain machine and removing the partition wall that lies behind it. After that I'll start construction. Place has got a long, long way to go to get it where I want it by opening, but we'll get there. Talk to you Monday Lord willing, lots a stuff going on Monday!

Friday, August 04, 2006

The World is much larger without partition walls in the way

Wow.........dont even know how to begin to tell you how happy I am to be virtually done with the demo work, mainly because I am pretty much done with something in two days that I thought would take me 4-5! I'm not going to type any further without saying that this does not take place with out having good friends! Ellis Bryan, Russ Hickey, Drew Morris, Ward Boone & Nathan Montgomery were a life saver for me. All came out just to see the place and say "hi" and all end up staying for hours on end helping me work. Thanks boys, I owe you all a big favor! Off the subject for a second, I'm sitting here listening to Bill Monroes old ass ABSOTLUTELY TEAR UP a mandolin......guy was a freakin' legend! At any rate, in the first two pictures you'll see the before and after. Removing the partition wall opened the whole interior up, it looks four times larger than it did........what a difference huh!?!?!?! Then the third & fourth picture is a group picture my lovely wife Martha took of Drew, Nathan, Me & Wyatt. Today me and my amigo will be scraping painted windows with a razor blade, which probably will take the majority of the day. I've now got to sit in a corner and survey the landscape so to speak.......having all this open space is like having an open canvas. Placement of tables/chairs etc. to maximize space. My cooker is finished.....ill be headed to pick it up next week sometime. My welder finished my coal basket.....which is the handy little feature that will enable me to get some good sleep at night. I'll be picking it up this afternoon. He should start on my furnace next week. I'll be using this to burn my wood down to coals. I was going to install a brick furnace out there but the fire dept. said "no sir". Funny thing is they don't care about the furnace, just whether or not its stationary or mobile. So I'm having one made out of double wall iron. I'll post later tonight or tomorrow with todays post.

Thursday, August 03, 2006

Marvel Comics.......POWERBALL!

Had to post this pic.......Houston Hickey, "PowerBall's" brother, designed this. I'll post a more relevant update later today. Oh well I do have some news, just got a bill from my lawyer down in memphis to the tune of $1500.00 odd bucks. Lawyers!?!?!?!?!

Wednesday, August 02, 2006

Sledge Hammer Time with "PowerBall" & "Eno"!!!

Well, I must say that I feel good right now because of the time spent working ( I should say DESTROYING) the interior of the joint. Ellis "Eno" Bryan (of Bryan Custom built Fences fame) and the human front-end loader Russel Wayne "PowerBall" Hickey (the guy in the red, cut-off Jason Vorhees outfit) came over to lend a hand.......of which I've got to give a lot of thanks! The place really does look better, getting the partition wall out really opened the whole space up, it looks three times larger! Seeing that much space really did get me excited. Tomorrow will involve the removal of a few more things and hauling off all of the debris to the dump. Got another bid on screening in the side shed where the cooker and coal chimney will be, actually I had a guy out to bid it........he should have me a # by this weekend. Cleaning crew came by and bid me $600.00 to clean the kitchen up. Sounds like a might even be saying to yourself that $600.00 ain't worth it......but this is the one thing I'm not going to bitch at, if you could see how this kitchen was left you would say its worth it too! I can't pay this guy fast enough to get in there and clean this place up! Ill post tomorrow....hopefully with pic of the whole room after its cleaned out.

Tuesday, August 01, 2006

Getting ready to demo

This is me and my little boy Wyatt getting ready to head to the bbq joint to get some more things done in order to start the demo work - yes we put him in his car seat before we took off. I dont know how long it will take me to get this demo work done, maybe a day or two or maybe a week. I cleaned a lot of junk out today and tomorrow morning ill be trashing a few larger things that were left in there. I should be able to break the sledge hammer and crow-bar out about lunch. Ill post pic of the before and after tomorrow, if I can figure out how to attach two photos to this thing, which I havent been able to figure out yet (HTML code crap). Also today Vern (landlord) and I signed the final lease, so I now can officially say my jewels are laying on the line. All the work I've been doing thusfar as been away from the property........most of which (but not all) seems to have me on the phone, on the computer or down at codes. I am excited to get in there and start getting everything in gear........something about finally doing some work at the place that makes it hit closer to home. After i get the crap taken to the dump and know I'm about to get started, I'll be a little quasi-cerimonial about it............with a flair for the dramatic. Should go something like this:

1) Sit down & say a quick prayer to the good Lord

2) Crack open a can of Budweiser

3) Grab the sledge hammer
4) Hit play on the iTunes (Are you sure Hank done it this a'way will be the lead song)

5) CRACK! goes the hammer

What is this Blog???

You ever been sitting around cooking for your family and friends and been told the following: "Hoss, this is the best I've ever had in my dadgum have got to open up a place of your own". The thought crosses your mind to do just that, but for whatever reason you dont. Well I'm "that" guy that actually went through with it and did it. I had absolutely ZERO restaurant experience! I decided to start this blog about my own experience hoping that it may be of some use and help to others who might be interested in opening their own place.
I learned this craft almost 20 years ago cooking whole hogs on brick & cinder block pits at a couple of little BBQ Joints in Henderson, TN. I learned from old, lifelong career Pit-Masters, working with them as an apprentice during school off and on for four years. Over the course of that time I learned the old, time-honored craft of REAL pit barbecue. At Martin's Bar-B-Que Joint I am trying as hard as I can everyday to bring that time-honored authenticity to my customers.
As you read you'll see I've made some stupid decisions, and I've made some good decisions. If you are thinking of opening a restaurant, especially a BBQ Joint, read this blog! Maybe some of this info can be of use to you. At the very least you will be entertained because I pull no punches.
Now listen, this is my blog to not only help with information but my blog to freely rant about my day to day experiences. There is no real "bad language" on this blog but there might be some things said that are very "tongue in cheek". If you are easily offended and/or cant see the satire in my posts then please just leave the blog. It will save both of us the annoyance of each other. For those of you who do like satire and are looking for good information about this experience, then by all means enjoy!