It’s the Brand

Bar B Q

In North Carolina, Bar B Q is right at the top of the food chain. There are even two distinctive styles. The eastern pork style with a vinegar based sauce and the western (Lexington) style with a catsup base. Of course just about every state has its own unique Bar B Q style.

 Where I grew up in Michigan, the only really good place for Bar B Q was US 31 Bar B Q. It must be good because it has been around since 1939.  What makes US 31 Bar B Q different and unique is the “secret sauce” which has never been duplicated. It is somewhat sweet and thin….it adds flavor yet does not over power the beef, pork or ham.

I always thought US 31 Bar B Q could be popular elsewhere. However, they have not changed much in the last 70 years. Recently a young man opened a 31 Bar B Q in small town north of Muskegon. The local business writer called it a franchise. I’m not so sure this is a franchise yet. It is a restaurant that sells a distinctive Bar-B Q. US 31 Bar B Q needs to develop itself into a “brand”. Starbucks has branded coffee. Biggby has branded coffee ( BIggby Coffee 09.24.08). McDonald’s has branded the hamburger.

I think the new 31 Bar B Q will do fine, as it is a local favorite. I believe that right now it is neither a franchise or a distinctive brand.

When I visit Muskegon again….there will always be a lunch at US 31 Bar B Q….the best Bar B Q there is!