Pitmaster-owner of B’s Cracklin BBQ, Bryan Furman answers some burning questions from his thoughts on Yelp to his feelings about tofu. (Erica A. Hernandez/AJC)

B’s Cracklin’ BBQ pitmaster named to Food & Wine’s list of Best New Chefs 2019

Honor comes after a fire closed his Atlanta restaurant

He’s been serving up lauded barbecue since 2014, first at B’s Cracklin’ BBQ in Savannah, then at a second location in the Riverside neighborhood followed by a stand in State Farm Arena. And this year, after a tumultuous few months Bryan Furman landed on Food & Wine’s list of Best New Chefs.

“Consider the chefs we celebrate here the culmination of (a) decade of radical change. They lead kitchens that foreground compassion as much as ambition; they cook food that is as meaningfully diverse as it is tasty,” Jordana Rothman writes of the the nine other chefs named to the list.

Of Furman she writes, “His success...has turned Furman into a leading voice in shaping the identity of Georgia-style barbecue.That he puts peaches in the sauce feels fitting, their sweet tang in lockstep with pungent mustard. His Brunswick stew feels right, too—it’s said to have originated in Virginia, but the thick mix of tomato and trimmings has been adopted as a point of local pride. But the magic, of course, is in the meat.”

Chef Bryan Furman, shown arranging meat on the smoker at B’s Cracklin Barbecue in Atlanta, plans to rebuild after Wednesday’s fire at his restaurant. CONTRIBUTED BY MIA YAKEL
Photo: The Atlanta Journal-Constitution

The honor comes on the heels of another bit of national recognition in the form of being named a James Beard Award semifinalist for Best Chef: Southeast. There was, of course, also the devastating fire last month that cause the Riverside location of B’s to be closed until further notice

“I’m going to reopen,” Furman told the AJC in early March. “That’s not a question.”

Furman and his wife, Nikki, opened the location at 2061 Main St. in 2016 after a fire destroyed the first B’s Cracklin’ location in Savannah in June 2015. Pitmasters and chefs from restaurants around the Southeast helped Furman to rebuild in Savannah and encouraged him to branch out into the Atlanta restaurant scene.

Pitmaster Bryan Fuhrman smokes pork ribs and pasture-raised whole hogs at B’s Cracklin’ BBQ. CONTRIBUTED BY WYATT WILLIAMS
Photo: For the AJC

Former AJC food writer Wyatt Williams gave B’s Cracklin’ high marks when he reviewed it in 2017.

“The smoked pork served at B’s is as simple and elemental as it gets,” he wrote. “After smoking overnight, whole hogs are pulled and chopped into fairly short strands. The resulting meat, sold by the pound, on plates, or in sandwiches, has a distinct but not overpowering quality of smoke followed by deep porky flavor. Unlike smoked pork butts, which tend to wallop with higher ratios of rub and bark, the pulled whole hog served at B’s is a subtle but pure experience.

Among other accolades, B’s was also named to Thrillist’s list of Best BBQ Joints in America last year.

Read the 2018 AJC Fall Dining Guide: Dining on Buford Highway 

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