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a tray of bbq and sides.jpg Chief’s / AJ Capital
Rodney Scott’s Whole Hog BBQ at Chief’s

Rodney Scott’s Whole Hog BBQ restaurant and rooftop bar opens in Downtown Nashville

The concept is the culinary anchor at Chief’s: a six-story restaurant and music venue from country star Eric Church

James Beard Award-winning pitmaster Rodney Scott made his name slinging Carolina-style whole-hog barbecue in Charleston, S.C. and has since expanded into Atlanta, with two more locations in Alabama.

On April 5, he opened the appropriately named Whole Hog BBQ, his first Tennessee outpost in partnership with Nick Pihakis of Pihakis Restaurant Group. It is the anchor restaurant at Chief’s, the six-story downtown Nashville food, nightlife, and music venue from country music star Eric Church and AJ Capital Partners CEO and founder Ben Weprin.

Rodney Scott’s Whole Hog BBQ is open for lunch, dinner, and weekend brunch, located on the fifth and sixth floors of Chief’s. The rooftop portion is dubbed Hell of a Q and overlooks the popular Broadway strip. There’s also a street-level walk-up window that serves breakfast beginning at 8 a.m. and continues serving until late-night.

The two-story Nashville location and its rooftop bar are a departure from other Rodney Scott restaurants, but the concept fit the space they were working with.

“We were excited when the Chief’s team, including Eric Church, approached us about collaborating, so this venue was definitely an example of the right opportunity in the right location,” said Nick Pihakis, founder of Pihakis Restaurant Group. He added that the restaurant group hopes to expand its traditional format, with more Rodney Scott locations in the future.

The restaurant serves classic Carolina-style barbecue that Scott is famous for, including pulled pork shoulder, spare ribs, smoked turkey, cheddarwurst sausage, a fried catfish sandwich, and sides like collard greens, baked beans, and potato salad. The menu also includes nods to its new location, with Scott’s take on Nashville hot chicken available as a sandwich or a plate.

Early risers can score breakfast tacos, burritos, and pork and grits via the walk-up window, while the late-night menu offers smoked chicken wings, pork skin nachos, ribs, sandwiches, and a burger.

Tennessee may have its own barbecue style, but that doesn’t worry the Carolina-focused Rodney Scott team.

“All styles of barbecue are available all over the country, and we’re finding the customer wants to try them all,” Pihakis said. “Rodney Scott’s BBQ will always feature whole hog pulled pork, ribs, chicken and other meats cooked in our pits over live, glowing coals, but we also celebrate various styles and sauces.”

Chief’s is an ambitious project. According to the venue, it’s meant to be a physical representation of Eric Church’s musical journey, including his accolade as CMA Entertainer of the Year in 2020. The decor includes more than 4,000 concert posters from throughout his career that cover the ground floor. Church kicked off the opening with a 19-show residency that’s ongoing through June, and a rotating troupe of house artists are featured in daily and nightly concerts.

Chief’s brought something new to downtown Nashville and the always-vibrant Broadway area, so Scott and Pihakis saw an opportunity to try something new with the Rodney Scott’s Whole Hog BBQ experience.

“I’ve cooked whole hog in a lot of places, but none quite like Broadway,” Scott said.

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