Support Local Journalism. Join Riverfront Times Press Club.

Wednesday, June 13, 2012

Owner Matt Stiffelman Discusses Soon-to-Open Vernon's BBQ & Catering

Posted By on Wed, Jun 13, 2012 at 3:00 PM

click to enlarge IAN FROEB
  • Ian Froeb

Last week, Gut Check told you about Vernon's BBQ & Catering, coming soon to 6707 Vernon Avenue in University City.

How soon? Owner Matt Stiffelman tells us the restaurant should have its soft opening in a matter of weeks.

"I was born and raised in the [University City and Olivette] area," Stiffelman says by way of an introduction. "When I got to college, I went to work for Super Smokers for four and half years."

At Super Smokers, Stiffelman was director of special events and helped open several of the then-much-larger chain's locations. He left Super Smokers and worked opening locations of Ben & Jerry's, including its spot in the Delmar Loop (6380 Delmar Boulevard, University City; 314-721-8887).

Meanwhile, Stiffelman and a colleague from his Super Smoker days had discussed for a while about opening a barbecue restaurant of their own. Finally, he says, the necessary circumstances aligned: "We found a location that's killer."

Stiffelman and crew will smoke their meats over fruit wood from Missouri and Illinois. The selection of meats will include the expected -- ribs, pulled pork, pulled chicken and turkey -- as well as a few curveballs. Vernon's will smoke a whole brisket, rather than flat-cut brisket, which most barbecue restaurants use. Vernon's will also offer smoked ham, with the ham coming from local vendor Miller Ham Company (3345 Lemp Avenue; 314-776-0910).

Oh, and there will also be smoked tofu.

"I have a couple of friends who are vegan," explains Stiffelman, joking (we think) that he didn't want to hear these friends whining about not being able to eat barbecue.

(And, yes, of course, the vegetarian-vegan options will be kept separate from the meat.)

Sides will include corn bread, sweet corn, braised cabbage and a smoked seasonal fruit. Sauces will include a spicy-tangy St. Louis-style, a sweet-smoky Kansas City, a (very) hot sauce, a peach-flavored sweet sauce, and a Thai-style peanut butter-based barbecue sauce.

We'll let you know about Vernon's actual opening date as soon as we learn it.

Tags: , ,

Support Local Journalism.
Join the Riverfront Times Press Club

Local journalism is information. Information is power. And we believe everyone deserves access to accurate independent coverage of their community and state. Our readers helped us continue this coverage in 2020, and we are so grateful for the support.

Help us keep this coverage going in 2021. Whether it's a one-time acknowledgement of this article or an ongoing membership pledge, your support goes to local-based reporting from our small but mighty team.

Join the Riverfront Times Club for as little as $5 a month.

Read the Digital Print Issue

January 19, 2022

View more issues


Never miss a beat

Sign Up Now

Subscribe now to get the latest news delivered right to your inbox.

Best Things to Do In St. Louis

© 2022 Riverfront Times

Website powered by Foundation