New BBQ Restaurant Looks to Smoke the Competition on Eastern Avenue

By Seth Daniel

A new BBQ restaurant and catering business, now based in Peabody, is looking to relocate on the corner of Eastern and Crescent Avenues in a tag-team proposal with the property owner, Titan Street Sweeping.

Big Pig BBQ is looking to renovate the building on the front of the site into a catering kitchen and a retail “deli-style” BBQ restaurant.

“Big Pig BBQ sees this as an ideal location to access its catering clients as well as bring some delicious ‘Q to Chelsea,” read the filing at City Hall. “The retail concept for 300 Eastern Avenue is a BBQ market and deli, a twist on Boston’s many typical Italian markets and delis. This is a place where the customer can sit and have a casual counter service hot BBQ meal, as well as purchase prepared take-home meals and packaged BBQ specialty items.”

The bulk of the business, however, would be in the operation’s catering company. Founded in 2008 by several friends, the company has developed a dedicated catering customer base and indicated it does about 250 events per year.

The plan is to use the entire 3,000 sq. ft. building for the BBQ. Some 1,500 would be dedicated to the commercial kitchen, while 1,000 sq. ft. would be dedicated to the retail store and 500 sq. ft. to office uses.

Meanwhile, Titan Sweeping proposes a second phase of the project in which they would remove all of the street sweeping materials and debris, which now infamously litter the very visible site.

Those materials and the street sweeping machines would be moved into  a new, covered building on the back of the site.

“The second phase would stop all the dumping, sorting, separating and transporting sweeping materials,” read the filing. “It would also remove all the cement blocks from the property.”

The matter has been recommended positively by the Planning Board and will have a hearing at the Zoning Board on May 12.

A rendering of the restaurant that will be known as Big Pig Restaurant and Catering on Eastern Avenue.

A rendering of the restaurant that will be known as Big Pig Restaurant and Catering on Eastern Avenue.

City Councilor Matt Frank said he believes the project is potentially an easy sell to the neighborhood.

“I don’t think anyone would have looked at that site and thought – BBQ,” he said. “However, it fits their needs and provides an amenity to the neighborhood that’s within walking distance…At least from a planning point of view, I think it is a smart use because it is certainly better than what was there before…From a planning point of view, it seems smart to me.”

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