Local Man Opens New BBQ Restaurant in DuBois for Memorial Day Weekend

DUBOIS, Pa. (EYT) – After years of success at “The Shack” in Lucinda, DB’s Smokin’ BBQ is ready to smoke up its new location at Doolittle Station on Rich Highway in DuBois.

(Photo: Owner Doug Bauer stands in one of the dining cars in Doolittle Station.)

DB’s Smokin’ BBQ opened with nearly a full menu in DuBois, putting the finishing touches on its new location as it opened for Memorial Day Weekend. The ribbon-cutting was at noon on Thursday, May 27, and the barbeque was sizzling until 8:00 that night.

“There were some things we didn’t get on the menu in the rush to get this open for Memorial Day, but we have pretty much a full menu,” owner Doug Bauer told exploreJeffersonPA.com. “We’re getting a few days under our belts, and after we get that done, we’ll start to introduce new things.”

The business on Thursday after the ribbon-cutting was a steady stream, and Bauer said that more were going to find their way to the location by that evening.

“My phone’s been blowing up,” he said. “People asking me, ‘Where is this new location?’”

The sign on the side of the old golf shack at Doolittle Station.

The sign on the side of the old golf shack at Doolittle Station.

In Doolittle Station, as a customer enters the parking lot, they need to turn right at the ice cream shop and then up that hill as if they are heading to the dinosaur exhibit. Right there on the left, next to the outdoor putt-putt course, is what is called “Suite Barbeque,” which is the old golf shack. A big DB’s Smokin’ BBQ sign is on the side of the building.

Even though the location is just opening, Bauer said he thought the first day was a success. There was a little problem during the opening hours, though. They had a new point-of-sale system that works well at their Lucinda location, but the DuBois site had a slight glitch.

“Today’s going well,” he said. “We had some hiccups, as every new business does. Running that new smoker out of the box – it seemed to perform quite well. I want everyone to come out and see us. I make a point to try to see everyone, but if I’m not here, I want people to tell someone that they stopped in here and said ‘hi.’”

Bauer is always looking to innovate. He said that a business needs to adapt to changes in technology and use whatever new ideas they can integrate into what they do. Even his new smoker will not be exempt from what he calls “Doug Bauer Secrets.”

The smoker at DB's Smokin' BBQ in DuBois.

The smoker at DB’s Smokin’ BBQ in DuBois.

“I’m probably going to change out the rack system to one that’s more user friendly,” he said. “I might put a computer on it so I know when things hit temperature so I can make the best product I can. I want to integrate new technologies in my business because it helps me do business better. Some of this is technology (that) I don’t really know how to use yet, but once I implement it, I can see where it helps. Like my coolers. My coolers tell me how they’re operating, so I don’t lose a whole cooler of meat.”

Roger Mikulec is the general manager at Bedrock while Bauer keeps busy between this location, the Lucinda location, and his new role in the barbeque community. Bauer was recently elected to the National Barbeque Association Board of Directors. This is an organization that focuses on the business and craft of barbecuing, not competitions.

“We want to help guide people who want to do barbeque,” he said. “The board is made up of people who want to give of themselves to make the barbecue industry better. It’s a great organization to join because there’s a wealth of information there. This is an association that wants to help people make better barbeque.”

Part of the association’s focus on guidance bleeds into Bauer’s business. He said that many people are interested in working at the new location because they see the atmosphere DB’s Smokin’ BBQ offers.

“They see that it’s fun, a great time, and you can interact with the customers,” he said. “It’s hard to find someone walking away from here who is not happy.”

Bauer is planning on expanding into the Dr. Doolittle’s complex a little more as the business grows. He is currently planning on using the 1950s diner car as a place for his customers to eat, but the future may have an expansion into the fancier dining car.

“We want to create a high-end dining area for meals that I will prepare or other chefs will prepare,” he said. “We want to make it more appealing to someone who wants to spend money on something above and beyond. The VIPs will be VIPs.”

While the high-end plans are down the road, the current store and integration into the overall Doolittle Station complex is something of a dream come true for Bauer, and he does not plan to forget the bedrock of his business while working toward the future.

The window at the Bedrock location. The window faces the putt-putt golf course.

The window at the Bedrock location. The window faces the putt-putt golf course.

“We’re sticking with the basics to get our feet wet, but once we get running, we’re going to add more, and it’s going to be impressive,” he said. “This is the opportunity I have been looking for for a long time. I think with the help of Dr. Jeff Rice, we can really make something happen here.”

More information about DB’s Smokin’ BBQ is available on the company’s Facebook site.

A previous story about the restaurant can be found here.

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