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Biz Buzz: New restaurant offers customers a taste of Louisiana-style barbecue

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Fire & Smoke BBQ opened at 674 E. 1st Street in Idaho Falls last month. Get a look inside in the video player above. | Rett Nelson, EastIdahoNews.com

Do you want to know what’s happening in the eastern Idaho business scene? We’ve got you covered. Here is a rundown of this week’s business news across the valley.

BIZ BRIEF

IDAHO FALLS

Louisiana-style barbecue restaurant now open and the response is ‘out of this world’

Leaf Call shows off his pulled pork nachos. | Rett Nelson, EastIdahoNews.com

IDAHO FALLS – Taking barbecue meats and giving them a Louisiana-style twist is what you can expect to find at Fire & Smoke BBQ, a new food truck that opened last month in front of Planet Doom in Idaho Falls.

The restaurant opened without fanfare July 8, and owner Leaf Call tells EastIdahoNews.com the response has been “out of this world.”

“It’s been great. We’ve had lunches where we’ve served 66 hamburgers in one sitting,” Call says.

Call built the food truck himself, which includes an oven with a live wood fire and full kitchen.

The menu includes brisket, ribs, chicken and pork served sandwich-style or as part of another dish, like nachos or potatoes. The menu also includes a variety of side dishes like coleslaw, mac and cheese, and chips.

Call says the pulled pork and chicken nachos are one of the most popular items.

“I have a special way of barbecuing chicken. It’s fall-off-the-bone tender, and it’s unbelievable,” says Call. “Louisiana is a little bit more of an enlightened flavor. It’s more spice, a little less on the heavy smoke flavor and more focused on the quality of food.”

Call was originally planning to open up by the mall but ultimately decided on 1st Street because he grew up in that part of town.

He worked in the auto parts and service business for many years, but he’s always had a passion for cooking.

Several years ago, he was living in Utah, and his employer asked him if he would cater a lunch for a company party. The boss came up to him afterward and asked him if the food came from a well-known barbecue restaurant in the area.

“I had never heard of (the restaurant he mentioned) before,” Call says. “He looked right at me and said, ‘This is what you need to be doing. What are you doing here?'”

Though people always told him he should open a restaurant, Call never thought he’d be able to support his family doing it. He is pleased with the community’s support.

“You can’t ask for anything better than that,” says Call. “I’ve got a phenomenal following, and I love my customers to death.”

The food trailer allows him to bring the restaurant directly to customers for different catering events.

Call is planning an official grand opening celebration once the COVID-19 pandemic is over with. He’s also planning to open another eating venue right next to his truck on 1st Street in January.

“Come and enjoy some great barbecue,” he says.

As a former volunteer firefighter and paramedic for Idaho Falls, Call says police officers, firefighters and members of the military will always get a 10% to 20% discount.

Fire & Smoke BBQ is at 674 E. 1st Street. It’s open Monday through Friday 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. Visit its Facebook page for more information.

BIZ BITS

Local pediatric clinic hosting free drive-in movie night in Idaho Falls next week

IDAHO FALLS – As summer winds down and kids throughout eastern Idaho prepare to go back to school, a local business wants to throw one last party. Just 4 Kids Urgent Care in Idaho Falls is hosting a free drive-in movie night at the Motor Vu Drive-in Monday, Aug. 24. Emily Chantry, the director of marketing and events, tells EastIdahoNews.com the gates will open at 8 p.m. There will be numerous prizes and giveaways at 8:30 for those in attendance. CLICK HERE FOR MORE INFORMATION.

Arby’s restaurant opening in Rigby next month

RIGBY – Construction crews are working hard on a new Arby’s restaurant in Rigby. General Manager Matthew Kearl tells EastIdahoNews.com the 2,100-square-foot building will open in the space right next to Good 2 Go at 445 Farnsworth Way on Sept. 14. CLICK HERE FOR MORE INFORMATION.

128-year-old store in Archer opening under new ownership

ARCHER – Eight miles south of Rexburg just off Archer Road lies the old Archer General Store. Its history dates back to 1892, and locals have cherished memories of going there over the years. Bud and Bree Mason of Hibbard said they felt inspired to purchase the business in December 2018 after it had been sitting vacant for several years and are getting ready to open to the public this Saturday. We recently spoke with the couple about their close connection to the business and their plans going forward. A more in-depth story will be posted soon.

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If you have a Biz Buzz item you want to share, send it to rett@eastidahonews.com. Remember to use “Biz Buzz” in the subject line. Also, don’t forget to sign up for the free Biz Buzz email newsletter.

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