top of page

How Minnesota Style BBQ was Born


Neighbors BBQ Staff Tower Minnesota
Owners Eric & Angie Drake

Story told by Eric

I was introduced to an amazing BBQ sauce recipe about 20 years ago by a man that came up bird hunting every fall. He couldn't remember everyone's names that he would meet while he was visiting so he just called everyone "Neighbor." And everyone called him Neighbor. For the first 10 years I knew him I never knew his real name. He was just always "Neighbor."  After years and years of failing to get the BBQ sauce recipe from him, one morning he told me, with his deep southern accent, "Neighbor go grab yer boots. We're gunna run to town right quick."  I asked, "What do you need from town?" He said "Neighbor I'm gonna show ya how to make that BBQ sauce today."  So we ran to town and got all of the ingredients  and made a batch and I wrote the recipe down. My smoked meats were now complete!  His only request was to not give the recipe to anyone else. After years of smoking different meats with our 2 sons and having fun watching everyone's face when they take that first bite we decided to make the leap and open a restaurant. We thought it would be a nice gesture to give him some recognition in the name and also thought the name "Neighbor's" gives a warm welcoming feel. 

We had always dreamed of opening our own restaurant and over the years we looked at several different restaurant locations but never felt like any of the other ones were just the right fit.  When the Black Bear came for sale we looked at it and we both felt like this was the one. And at that point Neighbor's BBQ became a reality. 

Since we made the announcement that we were going to open we've had a lot of people ask us what "style" of BBQ are you going to be?  Are you going to be Texas style or Kansas City style or Memphis style or Carolina Style?  There are so many different ways to do BBQ and there are several regions in the U.S. that are famous for their style. We, at Neighbor's BBQ, are going to be "Minnesota style BBQ!"  We are going to put Minnesota on the map for BBQ. We are the "Birthplace of Minnesota style BBQ." 


We encourage anyone wanting to enjoy a fun, relaxed and family friendly atmosphere to stop in for a great meal and visit with the neighbors you know and maybe even meet some new neighbors during your visit!

bottom of page