A new Texas-style barbecue restaurant opens in Mid City next month

(Stock)

Offset Smoker BBQ, a new Mid City restaurant specializing in central Texas-style barbecue, is set to host a soft opening on Saturday, June 1.

Co-owners and childhood friends Hue Pham and Thuan Pham traveled to Austin, Texas, in 2020 and fell in love with the city’s unique brand of barbecue. Hue Pham went on to learn smoking techniques from a handful of Austin eateries in hopes of bringing that brand of barbecue back to Baton Rouge.

Offset Smoker BBQ opened a food truck in 2022, though it is currently used only for big events like 225Fest and Night Market BTR. The new brick-and-mortar is located on Government Street near Superior Grill in what was once a Cash America Pawn.

According to Thuan Pham, the restaurant’s offset smokers are what will set it apart from other barbecue establishments in Baton Rouge.

“With offset smokers, you get to control the temperature better and create a much richer flavor,” he says. “We’re trying not to do too much with seasonings so the flavors of the meat and the art of smoking can shine through.”

When it comes to signature menu items, Thuan Pham says “brisket is king.” While other items will be available, he expects the brisket to be the thing that keeps customers coming back.

During the soft opening period, the restaurant will be open only on Saturdays and Sundays, but once operations get into a steady rhythm, it will be open on Fridays, as well. Both Hue Pham, a police officer, and Thuan Pham, a nurse, plan to keep their day jobs once Offset Smoker BBQ is up and running.

“We’re not restaurateurs by any means, but we love cooking,” Thuan Pham says. “It’s a labor of love.”