After satisfying the rib cravings of folks at the Boundary Street Markets and King George square, Rod Saba and David Kempnich focused their attention on bringing Big Roddy’s signature ribs to Fish Lane.

Before striking gold with their Chicago inspired style ribs, David Kempnich says they almost opened a rooftop bar in Elizabeth Street in the city in 2013. If it was not for politics putting the brakes on that project, Big Roddy’s Rippin’ Rib Shack may not have come about. The main inspiration came from Rod, whose secret rib recipe cemented their dedication to create Big Roddy’s instead.

The boys looked at a number of different places around Brisbane before ultimately deciding on Fish Lane. David says, “We landed on Fish Lane because of its proximity to the CBD without having to pay the CBD rent, the very large number of businesses and residents within easy walking distance of the shop and, finally and possibly most

importantly, Fish Lane is a cool address.” According to David, Big Roddy’s is experiencing great success because its product is both broadly appealing and delicious. “American cuisine is crazy hot right now,” laughs David. While designing the store, he says they put an emphasis on ensuring the shop and atmosphere were a comfortable and inviting place to be. The inspiration for the interior design of the shop came almost entirely from one word — comfortable, David reveals. “We wanted people to be able to turn up at our store, walk in the front door and immediately feel comfortable and at ease. I hope our customers feel as though we achieved this. Rod and I certainly do.”

David says, what sets Big Roddy’s apart is a certain charisma that many establishments are missing.Both he and Rod believe it is very important for their customers to have a direct line to the ownership of the store. A gesture their customers seem to appreciate is that they are able to shake Big Roddy’s hand and tell him what they think of their

food. Since opening in Fish Lane, David says it has been really exciting for them to see the same faces coming back over and over. “I don’t think we could have realistically expected to be doing any better this early in, so we are both very happy boys,” reveals David.

Both David and Rod have big dreams for the future of Big Roddy’s Rippin’ Rib Shack. “Multiple shops are definitely on the horizon, but first I’d like us to prove that we can turn a consistent profit at Fish Lane before getting to caught up in those dreams,” declares David. Currently, the most popular dish is Pork Ribs with homemade Big Roddy’s Smokey BBQ Sauce served with handcut sweet potato fries with Hot Rod Seasoning, although David insists everything on the menu is already ‘pretty damn good’. He says, enthusiastic rib lovers should come in and try the chicken burger prepared ‘Roddy Style’. “It’s how Rod has his lunch literally every single day.”