"I wonder how hard it is to cook ribs? I like ribs."
Eight years ago, #theRibList began. It started out small, with a list of names on my phone and a few people in my driveway. As I discovered that barbecue paved the way for making lots of friends, the list grew. It grew longer and longer until I ended up with hundreds of people who wanted to #GetOnTheRibList.
I ventured outside of my driveway to cook for causes that I cared about- from elementary schools to churches to nonprofits. As we cooked more and more, I gathered a few things. I gathered skill and technique, appreciation for craft barbecue, a variety of smokers, and a name: the Bishop of Barbecue.
Paul's Rib Shack
In March 2017 we opened for business in a bright red food truck under Paul’s Rib Shack Barbecue. We went a few places in the Food Truck area, but now we’ve found our home - 4800 Nelson Rd. After a year of hard construction, we transformed this little building into a bright red restaurant full of fun and smelling of barbecue. It took some grit, but it was worth it to give you the coolest spot we know how to make with the best barbecue we know how to cook. Our Grand Opening was October 12, 2019 and was a pretty fun day.
It didn’t take long after our grand opening for things to get exciting. Just a few months later, COVID forced us to move to a to-go only operation. We didn’t even hit our stride before we had to change everything. Then Hurricane Laura hit SWLA on Aug. 25, 2021. Thankfully the Lord spared our place, but not everyone was so fortunate. We served alongside other generous members of our community serving at a free feeding site, as well as other opportunities. Then we opened back up the restaurant as fast as we could, just two weeks after the storm, just in time for Hurricane Delta. Then the Ice Storm. Then the flood. Then my house got ripped in half by a tornado.
It was a wild year, but we are here, stronger, better, and more gracious as result of the trials and celebrations of the past few years. We celebreated our third birthday as a restaurant recently, and I couldn’t be more proud of my crew, our food, and this community. Thank you for letting us be a small part of your story, and thank you for joining me on this adventure #LifeIsMoreFunOnTheRibList
Paul Pettefer- Head Pitmaster and CFO - Chief Friendmaking Officer