Williams Pit Bar-B-Que
514 Old Spanish Trail, BSL, 226-671-9436
- story by Lisa Monti, photos by Ellis Anderson
Music was blaring one recent morning at Williams Pit BBQ, but Phil Williams was concentrating on the kitchen and lunch ingredients. The daily special was pork chops and he was overseeing the sides and whatever else needed tending before customers started showing up at his restaurant at 514 Old Spanish Trail between Sycamore and Washington Streets.
The kitchen is familiar territory for the 70-year-old Williams, who has been cooking and catering for years. He’s in the restaurant seven days a week “unless I have a major catering job or gig, then we have to close,” he said. “You know I’m a musician and I go out of state sometimes.”
To read more about Phil, read ourGood Neighbor column, March 2013
Williams, whose nickname is “Smooth,” leads the group Gospel Blues Brothers and is a member of the Relative Unknowns blues/rock band. He’s performed often with the 100 Men Hall house band, the House Katz.
He’s been cooking for customers since his job as a computer programmer went away and he decided to go into business himself. With limited funds he purchased a barbecue pit and started with just a trailer. As years passed he moved to several locations. Eventually, Williams purchased a building on the corner of Old Spanish Trail and Washington Streets in Bay St. Louis. After 25 years he decided to retire. But retirement was brief and he got back into it when his three daughters were headed off to college. “I had to start making more money,” he said.
The newly built restaurant is in its second year. Williams specializes in what he calls “down home cooking, basically soul food.” There’s chicken and dumplings, sausage, pork loin, smoked chicken, gumbo, fresh vegetables and of course those pork chops.
This Mother’s Day, May 8, Williams is again cooking up a Gospel Blues Brunch at the Bay St. Louis Community Center from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. The choices include buttered grits, smoked sausage, steamship round, pulled pork, rice pilaf, string beans, peach cake cobbler and plenty more.
The deluxe Gospel Brunch Buffet will feature food and quality entertainment as only Williams can pull together. For more information and to purchase tickets online, click here!