After nearly 35 years, The Pit Barbeque owner Neal Tucker credits his business’s success to “good food, fair prices and fast service.”
“We have a good product; we don’t try to rip anybody off,” Tucker said. “I try to keep my prices lower than anybody else, so I think if you have better food at a lower price, I don’t think you can help but be successful.”
After four years in the Army, Tucker took over ownership of the barbecue restaurant in 1985, though it has been open since 1964.
Tucker said his father, Troy Tucker, was the original owner of nearly 20 The Pit Barbeque restaurants from San Marcos to Oklahoma, often franchising them out to friends and family. Tucker’s cousin was the previous owner of the restaurant on Williams Drive and handed the business off to him.
Since then, not much has changed at the Pit, and Tucker said his customers like it that way.
“The recipes in place when I got here are still here today,” Tucker said. “People get used to the way that things taste.”
The Pit was one of more than 60 businesses on Williams Drive that were closed due to the Atmos Energy gas leak in early February. The Pit was closed for 39 days, Tucker said.
And while restaurants—particularly barbecue restaurants—have come and gone in Georgetown, Tucker said having good employees and trusted family members to help him run the business has added to the restaurant’s longevity. His brother, Terry Tucker, who works as the general manager, and mother, Fleeta Mayfield, still help out regularly at the Pit, Tucker said.
Tucker said his favorite menu item to cook is brisket but added all the sides, including the potato salad, coleslaw and beans, are made from scratch because “it’s cheaper, and it tastes better.”
While he enjoys being his own boss, Tucker said his favorite part of the job is interacting with customers.
“If I could come in every day and just work through the busy hours on the front line part, I’d be happy,” he said.
The Pit Barbeque
2427 Williams Drive, Georgetown
Hours: 10 a.m.-9 p.m. daily