The Best Barbecue Restaurant Design

by Andrea Reynolds

In honor of summer and barbecue (a glorious combination), we gathered our favorite barbecue restaurant designs, all with a common theme: masculine and rustic.

This theme is no surprise as the art of barbecue itself is associated with a rustic masculinity, so it’s only fitting that the design materials fall more toward the industrial side of the farmhouse aesthetic.

You’ll see in the designs below reflect the laborious nature of making delicious BBQ in the furniture, lighting, and decorative components, using hardworking materials such as steel and rustic woods. Exposed welds and imperfect or distressed wood table tops add a lot of texture to a space without being distracting. We love these designs (almost) as much as we love the food.

Let’s dig in!

Smoke BBQ Restaurant

Smoke BBQ Restaurant

Whiskey barrel bases, distressed metal barstools, barn pendant lighting—it doesn’t get more rustic and masculine than that. In every nook and cranny you’ll find natural textures or hard materials like steel and concrete, a seemingly never-ending mirage of rippling and tactile surfaces.

When so much of barbecue is meant to be eaten with your hands, it makes plain sense that this restaurant features so many surfaces and textures.The design, especially the materials, is a true celebration of the food, and we admire this restaurant’s moxie.

Slows Bar-B-Q

Best barbecue restaurant design slows

slows barbecue restaurant design

commercial outdoor seating area

Full disclosure: This is our furniture, but we love the way it looks in this barbecue joint. Slows Bar-B-Q, established in Detroit, features a designed centered around rustic wood paneling with a robust black and red color scheme. The wood elements, varying in texture and tone, play well with the sleek black chairs and barstools. Together, the design is a balance of rustic and modern.

On the patio, you’ll find stainless steel outdoor dining chairs finished in bright traffic red. The color provides a visual break from the wood tones. It also plays homage to Slow’s logo, tying the entire brand together from menu to table.

Lewis Barbecue

Lewis BBQ exterior design

Lewis BBQ interior restaurant design

Lewis BBQ interior bar design with upholstered barstools

Lewis BBQ interior bar design with cool tile

Lewis BBQ interior design dining room

Forget traditional, Lewis Barbecue is our favorite modern interpretation of a bbq joint. Designed by B. Berry Interiors, the restaurant's interior fuses light and bright tones with spare yet defined barbecue accents (think horseshoes, cowheads, cowboy ropes). In the main dining room, you'll find fresh whitewashed wood and brick walls and modern leather chairs. B. Berry scales the cowboy kitsch back, focusing on creating an cool and contemporary space where the Texas barbecue is the main attraction. 

Babel Restaurant

Light, bright barbecue restaurant

On the hills of the Babylonstoren Farm Hotel sits the most unexpected and spectacular barbecue restaurant. Although it falls on the feminine side of the spectrum, this restaurant features distressed wood tables, brawny steel beams, and an amazing bull tile mural (a nod to the building’s past life as a cow shed).

Admittedly, this restaurant isn’t a traditional barbecue restaurant, but it does feature the masculine and rustic elements that you would normally find. What’s special about this restaurant is that the design features a lovely juxtaposition of light colors with heavy materials—a design that is as fresh as their take on barbecue.

While we can't satisfy your sudden craving for barbecue, we've got plenty more restaurant design where this came from. To see more barbecue restaurant inspiration, check out our Pinterest board, Barbecue Restaurant Design, or check out our new installation brochure for more trendy spaces to get your design inspiration fix!

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Featured image: RIB’Z Grill & Booze