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Pat Martin, chef and owner of Martin’s Bar-B-Que and Hugh Baby’s, discusses the business and meat supply of the coronavirus pandemic

The pit master and purveyor of freshly ground hamburgers shares his perspective


Pat Martin is a Nashville-based restaurateur who operates four quick-service Hugh Baby’s BBQ and Burger Shops and 10 fast-casual Martin’s Bar-B-Que Joints, some of which have weathered the storm of the pandemic better than others.

The downtown Nashville location, with its dependence on conventions, has taken it on the chin, while suburban locations have fared better — although restaurants in red communities, where guests groused about wearing masks, came back faster than those in blue communities, where they complained if a cook poked his nose over his mask.

Across the board, Martin tightened up operations, noting that when business is good, everyone gets lax. In this video he discusses the importance of paying attention to detail — don’t give guests two ounces of ketchup when they only need one ounce — as well as the continued disruption of meat supply, from hog shoulders to chicken wings.

“Probably by the first or second quarter of 2022 we’re going to see the supply chain level out. Between now and then it’s going to be really stormy waters,” he said.

Contact Bret Thorn at [email protected] 

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