The searing urge was too much for him, so Barry Sorkin just upped and left his safe and comfortable career as an IT professional to pursue his dream of bringing great regional American BBQ to Chicago. Barry spent over a year researching the industry, traveling to the BBQ mecca of Texas, then writing a detailed business plan, finding a location, and fine-tuning recipes.
The result was Smoque BBQ, a little joint that he and his partners opened four years ago on Chicago’s northwest side which quickly developed a saucy reputation for serving some of the City’s best BBQ. In its first two years, Smoque was spotlighted in Bon Appetit, Gourmet, The New York Times, and on The Food Network.
Barry discusses the forces that propelled Smoque’s rise from out-of-the-way startup to Chicago institution and tells why he believes BBQ evokes more passion than any other cuisine.
Barry is introduced by BBQ maven Gary Wiviott, author of Low and Slow: Master the Art of Barbecue in 5 Easy Lessons. Gary also dishes out a small sampling of BBQ history covering such morsels as cavemen’s first BBQ, and the evolution and differences in regional American BBQ.
Recorded Saturday, July 17, 2010 at Kendall College.