Demetri’s BBQ

1901 28th Ave. South
Birmingham, AL 35209
(205) 871-1581

Demetri Nakos arrived in Birmingham from Greece in 1955. His first job was with an uncle who ran Oakland Barbecue. There, Demetri paid his dues, making barbecue for Ensley steelworkers on the city’s west side. In 1961 Demetri found a business partner and opened El Rancho, a barbecue restaurant in Homewood. Eleven years later, Demetri saw another opportunity and left El Rancho to open his namesake barbecue restaurant in the same neighborhood. For the next thirty years, Demetri earned his reputation for barbecue cooked on an open pit, homemade sides, and signature fried pies. Demetri passed away in 2002. One of his sons, Sam Nakos, carries on his father’s legacy. He carries on their Greek heritage, as well, only hiring Greeks as pitmasters.

Date of interview:

December 30, 2004


Jake Adam York

Demetri's BBQ - Sam Nako - Alabama - Southern Trail BBQ
Dad got a sauce recipe from my mother’s aunt’s husband….She was Greek, born in Chicago…He had a basic sauce recipe and dad got it and it was a real good recipe and dad just kind of improved on it, so that was the same recipe we used over there—we use over here.

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