Serving up sauce-slathered smokey meats and sides, Mission BBQ opened its second location in Perry Hall on Saturday. Its grand opening celebration was held Monday afternoon.
Former Under Armour executive Bill Kraus and former Outback Steakhouse executive Steve Newton founded the first Mission BBQ in Glen Burnie on Sept. 11, 2011—the 10th anniversary of 9/11. Gaining immediate popularity, Baltimore Magazine named it the best barbecue in Baltimore.
Patch recently spoke with Newton about the restaurant's future and philosophy.
Patch: Why bring Mission BBQ to Perry Hall?
Newton: First and foremost, it's a great community. Families are solid and stable. It reminds us a lot of the community in Glen Bernie. It's a solid American neighborhood with the high school so close and a grocery store right next door.
Patch: What are your plans for opening additional locations?
Newton: We're taking it just one step at a time, and certainly entertaining all opportunities. Really, our focus is to get Perry Hall off the ground and successful, with great people and great food. If we do well here, we may take it to another area.
Patch: Describe the dining experience at Mission BBQ.
Newton: We don't think there's anything more American than backyard barbecue with the family and uniformed American heroes. The space, furniture and fixtures are comfortable with pictures of military, police, firefighters, football and lacrosse players. You can walk in and have your order ready in two minutes or you can sit in the dining room and take as long as you want. We clear your table but there's no tipping. Every hour you can sample a different menu item.
Patch: Why the patriotic theme?
Newton: Bill and I joke that we're a couple of corny patriots. We love our country, and although it's not perfect, it's the best country on the planet and we're very proud to be Americans. Our lives changed on 9/11. That's when Bill and I look back and think our country changed, in some ways for the better. We came together at that tragic time and we were reminded that the American spirit is as strong as steel. That's why we decided to open our first restaurant on the 10th anniversary. After 9/11, I started telling my son every time we passed a fire engine or a police car, "Those are the real American heroes." For Bill, it's personal. His son is in the Marines and his other son is preparing for the Naval Academy.
Patch: How is the restaurant involved with Wounded Warriors?
Newton: These young men and women go off and fight for our freedoms and sometimes they come back physically and mentally wounded. Wounded Warriors does a fantastic job helping them out. We've become partners with them and friends of their organization. On the day of our grand opening, 100 percent of the proceeds benefit the organization. A portion of sales everyday also go toward the organization.
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