The newly opened Meathead’s BBQ is serving up tasty backyard barbecue straight from the smoker to your plate.
What started as a way to raise money for his kids’ school fundraisers soon evolved into a catering business, turned thriving food truck, serving up savory southern barbecue creations to scores of people craving tender meats.
Now, those meat lovers can curb their taste buds with beef brisket, pulled pork, ribs, sausage and more at a stationary location. Meathead’s BBQ pit master and owner Marcel Hicks, along with his wife Shay and their daughters, are ready to take your order at their newly opened and much-anticipated Royal Palm Beach restaurant. “I want it to have a backyard barbecue feel, like Texas, Louisiana, North Carolina or Georgia,” Marcel Hicks said.
The corner spot is already drawing a fast and steady business in its opening weeks. It sits just a few doors down from Publix in the Crossroads shopping center at the northeast corner of Royal Palm Beach and Okeechobee boulevards. The scent of the smokehouse leads you there.
Meathead’s BBQ has the ambiance of eating in a friend’s backyard, as picnic tables topped with the company logo are within feet of the counter, and customers, workers and the owners share friendly chat.
“People ask me about the process, so I show them,” Hicks said. “Their smiling faces make me want to do it.”
Hicks has been making people smile with his grilling since he was a child and experimenting with different rubs. That’s when the South Florida native earned the nickname “Meathead.” And he’s proud to show people his craft.
“I smoke the meats in a 72-inch water smoker by Myron Mixon. We’re doing 500 pounds of meat a day just at the restaurant,” Hicks explained.
Meathead’s BBQ officially opened June 1 with a ribbon cutting and wishes of success from Royal Palm Beach Mayor Fred Pinto, who stayed to eat. Hicks is proud to be part of the community and to have his family work alongside him. “I feel so blessed,” he said.
The menu includes meat delicacies from melt-in-your-mouth beef brisket, pulled pork and pulled chicken, to baby back ribs, spare ribs and whole chicken.
“Everything’s from scratch, every day, all fresh. I smoke my brisket and pulled pork for 12 hours. Ribs and chicken for four hours,” Hicks said. “I use a dry rub. Nothing here is injected. What I take great pride in is my brisket.”
The three sauces are key. “I like playing with different flavors,” he said. “There’s the hickory sauce with a mustard inspiration from the Carolina region. The sweet sauce is based on the South Georgia-North Florida area, and then there’s the sweet spicy.”
Down home southern sides include collard greens, green beans, candied yams, and mac and cheese, along with potato salad, tossed salad, cole slaw, grilled corn, baked beans and corn bread.
The price for a half pound of beef brisket is $16, while a combo plate with two sides starts at $17. Family meals include a whole chicken with two sides for $25 and a full rack of baby back ribs with two sides for $32. Pulled pork and pulled chicken sandwiches start at $10 for a quarter pound of meat and one side.
There’s something for every barbecue lover. “The triple plate combo is one of the most popular items,” Hicks said. Another popular option is the fully loaded nachos or fries, topped with beef brisket, pulled pork, boneless ribs or chicken.
Daily lunch specials run from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. on weekdays. A sandwich, side and drink special starts at $8. Customers also gobble up the “Turkey Leg Tuesdays” special.
Several drinks made from scratch are offered daily and include a traditional lemonade, sweet tea and fruit punch. Beer and wine are also on the drink menu, starting at $3.
After making a name for themselves at the Wellington Amphitheater’s Food Truck Invasion and many more events across South Florida, Hicks said that there’s potential for a Jupiter location in the future. That’s another area where they’ve built a dedicated following. Also on the horizon are Meathead’s BBQ’s signature bottled sauces and pit master t-shirts.
For this family, they’re savoring the success of their hard work. This year not only marks a milestone as they open their first restaurant, but for high school sweethearts Marcel and Shay Hicks, they’ll soon celebrate their 25th anniversary — a year that is truly sterling for them.
The restaurant is open Tuesdays and Wednesday from 11 a.m. to 9 p.m.; Thursdays, Fridays and Saturdays from 11 a.m. to 10 p.m.; and Sundays from noon to 7 p.m. They are closed Mondays. Want your barbecue delivered? Delivery service is offered through Delivery Dudes and Grub Hub.
Meathead’s BBQ is located at 1232 Royal Palm Beach Blvd. in Royal Palm Beach. For more info., call (561) 249-2684 or visit www.meatheadsbbq.weebly.com or www.facebook.com/meatheadsbbqrestaurant.