B’s Cracklin BBQ moves forward with temporary location

B’s Cracklin is one step closer to reopening.

The popular barbecue restaurant in Riverside has been shuttered since early March when a fire broke out in the pit area and left the building heavily damaged. At the time, owner-pitmaster Bryan Furman vowed to rebuild.

In April, Furman told the AJC that he was assessing two locations, and if either worked out, it would be a temporary measure while he continued to search for a new permanent B's Cracklin' location in Atlanta.

Furman has settled on a temporary fix for his barbecue joint. He has signed a lease at Emory Point, in the former Marcello’s Pizzeria spot at 1679 Avenue Place. This week, he will begin the paperwork process to seek necessary licenses and permits, including for a smoker.

"It should not be a problem," he said of the permitting process, noting that the team at General Muir, his soon-to-be neighbors at Emory Point, received similar permits to use a mobile smoker there to test recipes for the restaurant group's forthcoming barbecue concept, Wood's Chapel. 

If all goes as planned, Furman anticipates opening doors to B’s Cracklin sometime in mid-July or early August.

Furman had initially focused on Riverside for a temporary location, but “everything we found and saw in Riverside wasn’t enough space. It didn’t make sense for us to go into it,” Furman said.

The space at Emory Point is 4,300 square foot and seats about 150 people. The increased footprint offers an opportunity for a different service model than before.

“We’re trying to figure out whether it will be counter service,” Furman said. “Having so much space there now, we’re trying to figure out the best service flow for the operation.

The new digs also come with a pizza oven, which Furman stated he would put to work for such menu items as mac-and-cheese and baked beans.

In addition, Furman is beefing up his culinary team. He will be bringing on Maximilian Hines. Hines has worked under the direction of prominent chefs like Richard Blais, Patrick O’Connell of Michelin-starred The Inn at Little Washington in Virginia, and Sean Brock, including being on the team that opened Minero at Ponce City Market in 2015.

Furman met Hines three years ago when the chef was working at Chicago's Steak and Seafood Restaurant in Roswell. Hines later served as chef consultant for Wade’s in Smyrna, and Furman was impressed by the way he ran the kitchen. “He helped that place get off the ground,” Furman said. Hines has also worked for Atlanta restaurant group Big Citizen, including holding the position of executive chef at The Lawrence.

“When we come back, we have to come back hard, swinging like Barry Bonds,” Furman said of the next iteration of B’s Cracklin, even in its temporary space.

Furman was unable to discuss plans for a permanent location because those are still in the development stages.

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