Historic BBQ isn’t a restaurant and it’s not a traditional food truck – it’s a competition BBQ team that also serves as a food truck in its spare time. Their sponsored by Smithfield Foods and are most definitely award winning.
Historic BBQ is run by these two – John Gambill Jr and Tony Bunce. John is the CEO of GO Concepts – an IT consulting firm in Lebanon and Tony is an IT Consultant for them as well. As well as being coworkers, they share a love for meat and that love grew into Historic BBQ.
It’s a love they take seriously – they have the best equipment – they were like beaming children showing off their first day of school outfit when they were telling me about their smokers! They’re pretty special and I was drooling from the smell of the truck – so I was pretty sure they produced a great product.
I think this thermostat taught me something in itself – just take a look at the difference in temperature needed to smoke vs barbecue vs grill. Learn something every day!
That’s another thing – John’s wife is a teacher and I think that’s engrained in him as well – he was explaining and sharing his knowledge with us on our visit. Then I got inspired by him to try smoking something on my own grill – I texted him for a recommendation – he replied within 30 seconds and walked me through every step. We’ve since become pretty good Facebook buddies and he is a wealth of information!
This statement says it all. John and Tony are great guys and they love what they do. It’s also a family affair – when they’re running the truck – the whole family gets involved cooking, serving and helping run the show.
The competition team aspect of the business takes them on the road – all over the country – and luckily with an internet job – they’re able to do their “day jobs” from their BBQ truck – so it’s afforded them the flexibility that makes it all happen.
Historic BBQ is also a pretty high tech operation. The screen you see in the background is connected to the smokers so they can look up and monitor the temperature of the smokers at any time.
And for the competition team aspect of it – all you have to do is follow them on Facebook or Instagram to follow their escapades and drool all over their creations. I know I do. (Oh – and they didn’t pay me for this – they gave me a plate of meat and some sauce which you’re about to see – I just fell in love with the whole group!)
So yes – after educating me and informing me about all they do – John finally decided to feed me!
First up I tried their smoked sausage and it was so freaking good. They said they get their sausage from somewhere special and then smoke it and seriously – I could have eaten a pound of it. But…
I had this staring me in the face! Brisket, pulled chicken, pulled pork and burnt ends. Burnt ends? Oh my – just wait.
They also let me try their sauces – and they have one that they’re putting the finishing touches on that was by far my favorite (and it’s about to go into official production)! That said – you can’t go wrong with either of their sauces (Original or Spicy) that they have available for sale right now.
So here we have the plate of beauty – and while it was all good (look at that pink smoke ring on the brisket) – the burnt ends were my absolute favorite. I found a recipe to make burnt ends that I’ll be sharing with you soon – it’s not the same way they do it – but it’s the best I can do without a real smoker and all their intelligence.
This stuff was amazing! I killed every bite of the burnt ends and the brisket – then made a dent in the pulled chicken and pork.
John and Tony sent me home with a bottle of their original sauce as well as two other products that I HAVE to tell you about. First – their rubs – they have a Black and a Red – the Black is for Beef and Bird and the Red is for Pork and Poultry. (yes – bird in both really) This was super helpful though because when I was working with a brisket – I knew – Black – when I had pork ribs – I knew to go Red. So simple and so delicious. These blends are their own blends and have a lot in them – and all I can say is trust them – it’s magic.
I’m not usually one to say – go buy this right now – but I will say – GO BUY THESE RIGHT NOW: get yourself a jar of Red, a jar of black and a bottle of the Sweet Vinegar Dressing – it will be money well spent – and you’re shopping local and helping local guys do even more in our area. (the jars might be out of stock – you can buy the larger package – but the jars should be fully stocked in the next two weeks)
And if I’ve sold you – you can have them cater your next event! Which has me thinking about our Christmas party – I mean – we can make that work – right?! And hey – next summer be sure to watch for them at the street fairs in Lebanon – until then – you’ll just have to keep an eye on their events page so you can taste for yourself!
They’re headed to KC for the American Royal competition right now – so here’s hoping they bring home some trophies!