The Kentucky Pork Producers Association 2017 Pork Restaurant of the Year is Brothers in Campbellsville.
Owned by Campbellsville native Josh Tucker, Brothers is the first barbecue restaurant in the community. As a child, Tucker fell in love with West Kentucky style barbecue when his family would take trips to Land Between the Lakes.
“My parents would stop at Knoth’s Bar-B-Que in Western Kentucky and load up on pork barbecue and the vinegar, mustard, black pepper sauce that came with it,” said Tucker. “I loved that stuff!”
While West Kentucky hooked him on barbecue, it was his time living in another barbecue region that inspired Tucker to go into the business himself.
“My wife and I moved to Kansas City for her schooling and that’s where our eyes were opened to barbecue as a restaurant culture,” said Tucker.
“Experiencing world class barbecue on that level and seeing restaurants thrive in a saturated market gave me the confidence that a barbecue restaurant would be a great thing to bring back home to Campbellsville!”
In 2011, the Tuckers moved back home and began smoking pork butts and selling pulled pork at the farmers market. In 2013 they opened a full-fledged restaurant, naming it Brothers in honor of their three sons.
Brothers features a West Kentucky inspired pulled pork, baby back ribs, smoked chicken and brisket. Their biggest seller is the pulled pork, which they incorporate into the majority of the dishes on their menu. One of their most popular sandwiches is the “Pig in the Orchard,” a combination of pulled pork, bacon, melted white cheddar cheese, flash fried apples and sweet barbecue sauce served on a split top kaiser bun.
“To be a small restaurant in a small community, only open 5 days a week, I’m very proud that we sold over 43,000 pounds of pork in 2016!” said Tucker.
Brothers offers lunch counter service during the day and full table service at night. In 2017, they hope to begin offering whole hog barbecue as a catering option for events.
Tucker says that items will continue to be added to the menu but the backbone of Brothers business will always be pork.
“I’m so thankful for the hard work of pork producers to produce the volume of pigs needed to support the restaurant industry,” said Tucker.