Kansas City Barbecue History

Posted By: americanbbqsystems, 25th April 8:00am Category: Barbecue

The rich history surrounding the beloved Kansas City barbecue began much earlier than the recognizable restaurants of today. In 1908, a man named Henry Perry parked an alley cart near the Garment District of downtown Kansas City where he served hungry customers “harsh and peppery” meat wrapped in newsprint. This became his claim to fame as word spread, and his fanbase grew.

By 1920, Perry opened the city’s first barbecue restaurant in an old trolley barn. It was there that he shared his secrets with the next generation of great barbecuers, Charlie and Arthur Bryant. After Henry’s passing at the age of 66, the brothers took over the restaurant.

By 1946, Charlie had sold the establishment to his brother, Arthur. From there, Arthur changed the name of the restaurant as well as the “harsh and peppery” barbecue recipe to something savory and sweet. That change of the recipe is what transformed into the zesty Kansas City Barbecue we know and love today. A century later, barbecue carts, trucks, restaurants, and competitions still hold the heart of Kansas City.

Today, we’re proud to provide some of the best barbecuing equipment on the market, and we think the father of Kansas City barbecue would be pretty impressed with our stuff too. Interested in becoming one of the great barbecuers of our time? Head on over to our products page! There you can read about our variety of smokers and grills to fit your needs and skill-level!