WILLIAMSBURG, Va. (WAVY) – In Williamsburg, a sweet and tasty bite of oven-smoked barbecue can be found at a local family-run restaurant that has served the community for half a century.
Over the years, the restaurant has survived a fire, been threatened by interstate plans, and is now facing a pandemic. But that hasn’t stopped the well-known place from earning local, national and national accolades for its cuisine.
Pierce’s Pitt Bar-B-Que, located off of Interstate 64, received a resolution from the Virginia House of Delegates congratulating the family-run restaurant on its 50 years in business.
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“What an honor, and it’s not just an honor for me and my family, but for the restaurant industry in general,” said Jay Pierce, second generation owner of Pierce’s Pitt Bar-B-Que at the restaurant. . “It’s been such a difficult year so getting the recognition is such an honor. ”
Amanda Batten, who was elected to the Virginia House of Delegates in 2019, presented the resolution to Pierce on Thursday.
“I’ve lived in Toano for about 16 years now, so I know Pierce’s very well, which is located in my legislative district, the 96th House District,” Batten said.
BELOW: Amanda Batten, who was elected to the Virginia House of Delegates in 2019, presents a resolution to Jay Pierce on Thursday.
Pierce’s Pitt Bar-B-Que has received numerous awards and accolades, including recognition from Travel Channel, Southern Living, and even National Geographic.
As the only open-air barbecue in Virginia, it uses at least two cords of hickory and white oak each week in accordance with Joint House Resolution # 594. In addition to the slow cooking process, the most important ingredient important is its tangy, Tennessee-style sauce, a recipe that has been refined over countless family dinners and remains a well-kept secret.
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Pierce’s also uses the highest quality Boston pork butts and sources free-range chicken and vegetables from local farms.
When its doors first opened in 1971, Pierce’s cooked about 60 pounds of simmered pork a week and sold sandwiches for 85 cents. Since then, the restaurant has grown to include six smoking pits with a maximum capacity of 6,000 pounds of barbecue.
“As proud as we are of the restaurant, it wasn’t just me. It was definitely all of our staff, ”said Pierce.
Pierce also credits his father, Doc Pierce, who opened the restaurant when Jay Pierce was 15. He credits his father for the longevity of the business and cites his father’s belief in a good product, honest work and the humility to survive in business for a long time.
“We have second and third generation staff who have been here for many years, and this restaurant was built on the backs of these people and the community around us,” said Pierce.
For more information on Pierce’s Pitt Bar-B-Que, visit their website.
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