Frito pies from a to-go window. Pork rinds with smoked-sausage-and-cheese dip. Fried cornbread pudding with salted caramel and vanilla ice cream. Those are just a few of the indulgences Andrew Evans plans to bring to the 14th Street Corridor—along with a whole mess of barbecue. By March 1st “at the latest,” Evans says, he and partner Eric Hilton will open a branch of Evans’s BBQ Joint in the Den of Thieves space.
This latest iteration of BBQ Joint—which also has locations in Easton and Pasadena, Maryland, and a stand inside Union Market—will have around 50 seats, two pellet smokers, and an open kitchen. At some point, they’ll open a takeout window that will stay active long past the dining room hours.
Finding chefs who are willing to devote themselves to a singular craft like barbecue has been tough, Evans says. He’s enlisted Cody Penton, a Texan who last worked at Halsa, the bone-broth-hawking Brookland cafe, to lead the kitchen. “People from Texas don’t have to be convinced that barbecue is an art,” Evans says. “It’s like Jiro Dreams of Sushi—you have to do it and do it all the time, and get up every day excited to improve by one percent.” As for Evans, he’ll continue visiting all of his restaurants at least once a day.
Their menu will include the meltingly tender brisket Evans is best known for, plus pulled pork and ribs (keep an eye out for a timer which will advertise when the racks are at their peak, for the half hour after they’ve rested). They’re also playing around with vegan chili with smoked tofu and a few sandwiches, including a riff on a Reuben made with their own pastrami, and a Cuban laden with smoked pork and house-smoked ham.
To drink, there will be PBR (the best-selling drink at all of Evans’ restaurants) and Saranac root beer on tap, plus a lineup of Maryland beers. And of course, this is Hilton co-production, so there will be cocktails–mostly whiskey-based. “No $50 shot craziness, though” Evans says.
The BBQ Joint, 2005 14th St., NW.