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Hix BBQ & Catering: Old-fashioned barbecue in a new location

Mystery Diner • Aug 20, 2019 at 8:00 AM

Hands down, the best fisherman I ever knew was my father. He once told me a rule for success with line and worm: “If your fishing hole gets ‘fished out,’ then move. The fish won’t come to you. You’ve got to go where the fish are.”

That is what Greeneville’s Brian and Angela Hixon have done. Initially starting Hix BBQ & Catering in June 2018 out on Greeneville’s Lonesome Pine Road, Brian and Angela decided to move to a location with higher visibility and easier access. As in the four-lane Andrew Johnson Highway.

Hix BBQ & Catering is easily accessible from the Andrew Johnson Highway (US-11E). Their new building has two moderate-sized dining rooms, each with a capacity of 25 to 30 or so patrons. There is a well-stocked mini-salad bar near the cashier/take-out counter. The server prep line is also located nearby.

Two clean and tidy restrooms can be found off the hallway between the two dining areas. Interior décor is “Country Simple” with corrugated galvanized steel paneling and various kinds of bric-a-brac at strategic points inside the building.

One entire wall is given over to mementos and photos of military and public service honorees, some of which are historical and very interesting.

Pulled pork platter: The Retiree, my dining partner and I had been attending an event in Greeneville earlier in the day. As we were on our way back to Johnson City, the Retiree announced that she was hungry and asked if anything we’d seen earlier on the way into town look promising?

It was my dining partner had spotted the Hix BBQ sign by the side of the road and directed the driver (yours truly) to stop there for a late lunch. Once inside, we were greeted by our server Katie, who showed us to our table and discussed which of the daily specials were still available.

The Retiree decided that she wanted to try Hix’s pulled pork barbecue platter ($8.99) with steamed broccoli and homemade coleslaw as her two side orders, and a thick slice of Texas toast. Katie had the platter in front of the Retiree inside of 10 minutes; slow-smoked pork shoulder meat pulled with the proper ratio of lean-to-fat in the meat, absolutely pristine and without pre-saucing.

The Retiree restrained herself from using additional sauces and spices on her smoky pulled pork. Her steamed broccoli was quite good, as was the coleslaw, making the whole meal a pleasure for our friend.

Crispy chicken wrap & homemade chips: I wanted something lighter for my lunch, and chose a Hix BBQ Crispy Chicken Wrap with Hix’s homemade potato chips ($8.49) along with one trip to the salad bar at $3.50/per.

The wrap was scrumptious, being three battered and fried white meat chicken tenders wrapped up in a flour tortilla with lettuce, chopped onion, tomato and sauced with ranch salad dressing. The homemade potato chips were excellent; indeed, they should be used as an example of how potato chips are supposed to look and taste.

My trip to the salad bar was just OK; several of the salad bar’s selections needed refilling. Fortunately, Katie came to my rescue and all was right.

Philly steak sandwich with fries: Meanwhile, my dining partner, looking for something more substantial than my chicken wrap and salad, ordered a Hix BBQ Philly Steak sandwich ($8.99) with their French fries as her side order.

Her 12-inch baguette bun was piled high with thin-sliced flank steak mixed with grilled onions, topped with torn romaine lettuce leaves, tomato slices and melted mozzarella cheese. The finish in this case is a squirt of mayonnaise, though mustard is available upon request.

My dining partner’s French fries, while commissary-grade, were prepared correctly and deep-fried to a golden brown; crunchy outside, fluffy inside and perfect all round.

The bottom line: Toward the end of our meal we had a chance to visit with owners Angela and Brian Hixon. The HIxons said that moving Hix BBQ & Catering to the Andrew Johnson Highway in Greeneville was a good move for their business; they expected to have their business thrive and grow at a faster rate than their old location.

Angela said that they’d still have their weekly specials, like chicken livers on Thursday night, and a fish fry on Friday nights. Given the quality of our lunches, the friendliness of the staff and the excellent service that Katie provided, the dine-around bunch and I will be paying Hix BBQ & Catering another visit real soon.

Hix BBQ & Catering

1245 E. Andrew Johnson Highway

Greeneville, Tenn.

525-5332

Mon-Thu 7 a.m.-8 p.m.

Fri-Sat 7 a.m.-9 p.m.

Available on Facebook & social media

Credit cards accepted

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