Big Earl's BBQ Fills Opening Left by Morales with Ex-Mission Chef

Categories: News

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Jackie Mercandetti
​Looks like Big Earl's BBQ, chef James Porter's home of "old school 'Q" in Old Town Scottsdale has found a replacement for Tony Morales, their pitmaster since January who left last week to focus on Desert Smoke BBQ, his business of signature sauces and spice rubs.

Chef James Fox, who worked with The Mission's Matt Carter and also spent some time in Mexico as a private chef, started at Big Earl's last week.

"His role will be more of a sous chef than pitmaster," says Wendy Porter, public relations representative and wife of James Porter. "He's got great restaurant experience and an exceptional palate."

Porter tells me Morales left on good terms and gave them sufficient time to find someone new. Big Earl's BBQ will continue to use Morales' signature sauces and rubs.

"A great cook can cook lots of things," Porter tells me. "We'd love for him [Fox] to put his thumbprint on some things at Big Earl's."

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5 comments
S Bridges
S Bridges

Outstanding news!  The Mission's food hasn't been the same since James Fox left.  I heard that he was out of the country providing his talents as a private chef, glad to hear he's back in the Valley!  Can't wait to try it out!

Timbo
Timbo

Your his mom....why are you playin like you didn't know where he was??

SunDevilRick
SunDevilRick

Any BBQ joint that hires a head chef from anywhere is bound to be a failure. BBQ is not Gourmet! Seriously stop trying to be high scale and just try to do good BBQ for gods sake!

Big Earl
Big Earl

Psssssssst ... hey SunDevilRick, J Fox is not, and never was a "Head Chef". (read the Chowbella blog-article closely!) And, he won't be at my place either! At big Earl's he will be the "sous Chef" which, in the restaurant biz, sorta means "Forman of the Kitchen - get it done - make it happen guy".  The Sous Chef does not do anything Gourmet.  He doesn't even design the food - he makes sure that the food that is served is prepared properly, just like his boss told him.  and, son, at Big Earl's, that ain't "high scale" as you call it!  But, it is the way I developed it over the past 40 years.  There are about 999 different versions of BBQ.  Everybody that has a backyard grill, or ever ate their grandpappies smoked meat, thinks that their BBQ is the best and that all other is awfull.  That's OK, everybody is entitled to their opinion. Just don't get too up-tight and condecending about it.  Sit back, put your feet up, have some fried squeeler tails, boiled Peanuts, fried Okra, smoked beef & pig, and enjoy yourself.  Thats what I do.  And, I garr-own-tee you, it don't get no better than that.  Especially if you wash it all down with a little bourbon and sweet tea!

Big Earl

Sxyindn
Sxyindn

Don't worry about James's talent for BBQ, he'll raise the bar for sure.

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