Kennewick — To find Kennewick's newest restaurant, just follow your nose.
Antoine Butcher opened The Butchers' Grill at 1505 W. Kennewick Ave. on May 1, and since then, the aroma of smoked meats has hung in the air, whetting the appetites of passersby.
Butcher has kept his big smoker full. Monday, he prepared about 80 pounds of brisket with his special rub, then loaded the smoker with chunks of mesquite charcoal before adding the meat.
"I'll slow cook it at 265 degrees for 18 hours," he said.
As it cooks, he'll occasionally spray the meat with apple juice to reduce any excess saltiness from the rub. The drippings become au jus for the meat.
Smoking the meats outdoors helps alleviate one of drawbacks of the building -- a lack of space.
"It's a tiny restaurant. On a good day, I might be able to seat 15 inside. And the kitchen is packed, but we make it work," Butcher said.
He and his wife, Melanie, have also added picnic tables for additional seating outside.
Butcher said he has plans to eventually expand the menu, which includes smoked brisket, pulled pork, grilled chicken and gumbo.
"I never intended it to be just a barbecue restaurant," said Butcher, who opened a catering business with the same name in spring 2012.
In a month or so, he plans to add a breakfast menu.
"I intend the menu to be very diverse with lots of different flavors, lots of different foods," he said.
What really gets Butcher's creative juices flowing is having his own kitchen.
Before, Butcher was renting space in the Pasco Specialty Kitchen, sharing space with about 15 other food producers.
"Now I have the opportunity and time to experiment. To see what I can do as a caterer," he said.
Inspiration comes from his large, extended family, who all enjoy good food and some who also enjoy cooking too. Butcher said he also watches a lot of cooking shows.
"I like to take their flavors and make them my own," he said, adding that he has recipes for three different sauces and two meat rubs -- all made from scratch.
The Butchers' Grill is open from 9 a.m. to 7 p.m. Tuesday-Saturday.
The website is www.thebutchersgrill.net and the company is on Facebook too. Phone: 430-0943.
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