4-6-2022 – JD’s Smokehouse anticipates May opening

Posted on: April 6th, 2022 by admin No Comments


April 6, 2022




Apr 5, 2022


LENOIR — Just in time for summer BBQ, JD’s Smokehouse in Lenoir anticipates opening in mid to late May.


When Jim and Debbie, “Jowls & Dimples” Goare opened JD’s Smokehouse in Rutherford College in 2013, they did not anticipate the smokehouse’s reputation would catch fire and spread so quickly.


The smokehouse was intended to be a small mom-and-pop style restaurant as part of the couple’s retirement, but its reputation grew, making JD’s Smokehouse one of the Unifour’s premier BBQ destinations.


Prior to coming to North Carolina to be closer to family, Jim and Debbie owned a restaurant in Georgia. Jim has worked in the hospitality food industry since he was a teenager. He jumped started his career at the age of 15 at the Holiday Inn in the 1970s. On the day he turned 18, he was promoted to the director of food and beverage at the hotel.


The plans to open the Lenoir location were snuffed out the day the owners signed the contract on March 17, 2020, the same day COVID restrictions led to the closing of dine-in restaurants. Now, the plans to open the Lenoir location have been rekindled and progress is blazing.


Overall, the kitchen is ready to roll, but they are still working out a few quirks with equipment. In addition, the general manager and operations manager are putting the finishing touches on the interior, including finishing construction of the booths.


Although there have been a few challenges to overcome, Matt Goare, manager, said that there have been no major issues.


To keep the restaurant from feeling corporate, family heirlooms and collectibles, as well as memorabilia from the JD’s Smokehouse in Rutherford College, are used to decorate the restaurant and sets the tone for a friends-and-family oriented dining experience.


The large A-framed wrap around porch creates an open air breezy feeling and begs for rocking chairs. Inside, dropped lighting that is designed from wooden Coca-Cola crates and large mason jars accentuates a large stone bar, creating a feeling of warmth.


As folks walk into the restaurant they will be greeted by a host, or hostess, who will take their order, then seat them for service. When customers leave, there is no waiting for the check.


Local wood is used to fire up and fuel the high tech BBQ smoker and is supplied by Barry Austin, who lives in the Patterson area. Austin was putting the finishing touches around the exterior of the building, as Matt Goare spoke with a contractor about the smoker.


The Lenoir restaurant offers over 100 years of combined experience, in a nine-year period.


Nick Burban, general manager, brings with him restaurant management experience from Atlanta. Burban and his wife moved from Atlanta to help open the JD’s Smokehouse restaurant in Lenoir in 2020. Burban and Goare have known each other for years and have a long-standing professional relationship.


Daniel Cox, operations manager, has been with JD’s Smokehouse since the beginning. Cox brings with him his experience with the restaurant in Rutherford College. Cox, who lives in Lenoir, said he is looking forward to having a 4-minute drive to work.


Clayton Huffman, who is a student at Western Carolina University where he is triple majoring in business management, hospitality/tourism, and marketing stopped by to visit the restaurant. Huffman, as well as his two younger sisters, have all worked with the smokehouse for years. One of his sisters, Catherine Lunsford, is currently the front-end manager at JD’s Smokehouse in Rutherford College.


JD’s Smokehouse, located at 2731 Morganton Blvd. SW in Lenoir, is recruiting individuals who have a dedication to providing exceptional customer service. Visit their website at https://www.jds-smokehouse.com to find out how you can become part of their team.


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