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Restaurant lunch highlights:

IN THE HOUSE: Brian Hood: David's Real Pit BBQ

It's always about David's customers

By Mike Sanford, GLOB Editor


"We have been serving Gainesville darn good ribs and BBQ for over 40 years." Brian added taking his baseball cap off and wiping his brow. "You know GLOB Master I still get a thrill opening up our restaurants for breakfast and seeing a lot of the same old friends ready to eat," he added with grin.

"David's Real Pit BBQ has always been about the long time customers, regular customers, and friends Mike,' said David's owner Brian Hood.



After 41 years and two restaurants -- on NW 39th Ave. and NE 23rd Ave – Brian enjoys the fact the fact there aren't many lunch stops still in Gainesville as long as he has been in business.

" I think Gumby's was making pizzas when I started, Leonardo's By The Slice, Arby's had just opened and the Steak & Shake on SW 13th and 16th Ave were open," The 'que boss said. "40 years is a long time and whole lot of food services changes," He added.

David's Real Pit BBQ is what an old fashioned Mom & Pop restaurant is all about. It might sound cliché but the David's staffers are like family. Sure I am a regular David's food lover. Besides the delicious menu David's staffer have even given me my own personal moniker in Mr. Mike.



I like that. It fits me. There is a certain amount of comfort walking up to the ordering counter and being greeted with. "Is it going to be the veggie omelete with tomatoes, onions, and peppers Mr. Mike?"

"My brother and I moved to Gainesville in the '70s and I opened the Tidy Car business in 1979 and was doing very well." Brian said reflecting on his Gainesville start-up days. "I worked in the food service industry back home and when David's came up for sale on NW 23rd Ave. we jumped at the opportunity to get back in the business I loved."

"Have you noticed GLOB Master after all these years we still have the same voice over on our ads: "



041819DavidsTEADavid's famous chopped pork sandwich with slaw, onion rings and don't forget the sweet tea, got to have that!"

"It was great fun starting our own restaurant, creating menus, meeting happy customers," Brian said with a smile.

"It all seems like a blur now relocating our restaurant to the NE where we established a very good base of customers," Brian Said. "At that time growth in Gainesville was moving West toward Alachua and a lot of new growth was taking place on NW 39th Ave. and we wanted to be part of that new customer base coming into Gainesville every day."

When Brian's son Jeremy graduated from UF it was a natural progression for the next generation Hood to move into the family business.



"Shoot by the time Jeremy graduated from UF he could have opened his own restaurant after doing so many different job's our BBQ Shop," Brian said. " I feel very lucky to have Jeremy as part of the David's team,' Brian added.

You could chronicle the life of David's Real Pit BBQ by such notable menu items as the Working Person's Sandwich or plate, the Jumbo Sandwich Plate, the Simple Start breakfast and four of the best breakfast sandwiches around available on any kind of bread or biscuit you prefer.



"Now I'm not bragging Mike when I say customers come in here to tell me our BBQ'ed Ribs are the best in town," Brian declared proudly.

"Don't tell anyone but it is the thick, fat laden ribs we use because they slow cook into tender moist delicious red meat protein," The long time pit boss said.

"We sell a lot of ribs GLOB Master," Brian said. "Sure well sell a good amount of chicken, brisket and pulled pork, But I see customers come in the front door with that pork rib look in their eye," Brian said laughing out loud.



Discussing the age-old business model, "If it ain't broken don't fix it" I asked if he saw any changes happening to David's in the near future.

"I don't see any new things happening any time soon GLOB Master," Brian said, "We are still trying to get the serving line at the NW 39th Ave. store right," Brian said. "But we have some superficial changes in mind that should make ordering lunch an easier process.

"If you can keep you regular, long term customers happy, new customers are like icing on the cake," the 'Cue Boss said. "And that will be reason for a fabulous 40 year anniversary birthday party GLOB Master," Brian said.

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