Ridgefield BBQ restaurant to debut on TV
Updated 12:19 pm, Saturday, July 8, 2017
But on Tuesday night, the pair’s local barbecue offerings will broadcast to a national audience on the Cooking Channel’s “Man Fire Food.”
“We have put a lot of work and time in over the two years, and it’s nice to have our restaurant visible to the masses,” Sperry said. “Connecticut isn’t exactly a barbecue mecca, but we are definitely a unique dining experience in the area, and it’s cool that it will be now out there for all the world to see.”
Hoodoo Brown BBQ, named after a famous cowboy, will be featured on the show’s “Monster Meat” episode, set to air at 9 p.m. on Tuesday.
The restaurant plans to host a viewing party, complete with free chicken wings, on the night of the show.
In the episode, which features food from Nashville, Tenn., host Roger Mooking will sample some of the Route 7 restaurant’s “outlaw barbecue,” including pork butts, pork ribs, pork belly and beef brisket.
As the show’s website says, “That pork comes together in the Hogzilla, a towering sandwich with BBQ ranch dressing, fried green tomato and coleslaw. To wash it down, Roger and Hoodoo Brown Barbecue manager, Chris Sexton make a cocktail called, “The Bloody Trinity,” which is topped with smoked meat!”
Sperry, who graduated from Ridgefield High School with Sexton in 2004, said filming his first TV appearance was a surreal experience.
“With our style of cooking, there are no do-overs,” Sperry said. “It takes 16 hours to cook a brisket, 10 hours to cook a pork belly. We had to be on our A game.”
He said he learned about the ins and outs of filming a food show and Mooking and his team “were so awesome, allowing us to be ourselves and tell our story.”
Hoodoo Brown BBQ opened in spring 2015. Sperry had been inspired by a “guys’ trip” to Texas, where he was able to try barbecue from more than a dozen restaurants.
When he returned from the trip, Sperry began trying to replicate traditional Southern barbecue with an apprenticeship on a Big Green Egg smoker and a part-time job at Ridgefield Prime butcher and seafood shop.
His friends, customers and family encouraged him to open a restaurant, Sperry said. He and Sexton opened Hoodoo in May 2015 near the intersection of routes 7 and 35.
“A few days away from our national TV debut, it really makes you think about all the people who helped you get there,” he said.
“From the long nights, busy holidays, platter days, prime rib Thursdays, the crazy hours, has all led to this point, and I for one am excited to see what happens next.”