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BBQ shack brings taste of Carolinas to Elderton |

BBQ shack brings taste of Carolinas to Elderton

| Friday, June 27, 2014 12:46 a.m
Louis B.Ruediger | Leader Times
Sid Brandon pictured with his smoker outside the barbecue business his family opened on Route 422 in Elderton. Wednesday June 25, 2014.
Louis B.Ruediger | Leader Times
Sid Brandon is pictured with granddaughters Kymberlee and Nicole Brandon, and his wife Linda. The family has opened a restaurant called Unkl Sid's BBQ in Elderton. Linda said they chose the unique spelling of 'uncle' just to be different. Wednesday June 25, 2014.

A taste of North Carolina has come to Elderton with Unkl Sid’s BBQ Shack at 11293 Route 422.

Sid and Linda Brandon, who moved to Elderton from Jacksonville, N.C., opened the take-out restaurant with a limited menu in June. A grand opening celebration is planned on July 12.

It took 12 years of planning and hosting barbecues for residents at the assisted living home they own in Elderton before the couple decided to take their smoking skills public and open the business with the unique spelling of “uncle” in its name.

“We would barbecue the whole pig, then invite everybody around,” Sid said. “People always told me we should open a restaurant. I’ve always wanted to do that, so we went for it.”

Their side business — literally aside their Family Pines Personal Care Home — is only open noon to 8 p.m. on Fridays and Saturdays, but the couple said they might expand the schedule if business is good. Their grandchildren — Kimberly, Nicole and Sidney Brandon — assist the couple at the Shack.

There is no indoor seating at the Shack, and orders are made at the window of a take-out counter. Picnic tables and chairs serve as a dining area outside.

The menu after the grand opening will include roast and pulled pork, ribs, chicken and beef brisket. Homemade baked goods will also be sold. In the two weekends before it officially opens, the Shack will feature a limited menu of barbecued meat. This weekend, Sid will be cooking ribs and chicken featuring a tomato-less vinegar-based barbecue sauce like ones common in the Carolinas. But the recipe at Unkl Sid’s is all Sid’s.

“I get into watching cooking shows to see all the different ingredients others use, then I try doing my own thing with them,” he said. “I’ve made up my own sauce because I don’t want to be like anybody else.”

Sid, 60, a Ford City native, married Linda in 1973, while he was a rifle range instructor in the Marines at Camp Lejeune in Jacksonville. Sid said he had always wanted to be a cook, and his newfound southern home influenced his culinary style. He and his wife influence each other’s style in the kitchen.

“We’re a good team because we know we can criticize each other. Sometimes it gets hairy, but we always work it out,” Sid said. “Sometimes we test each other, but we know that’s how we’re going to get it right.”

Brad Pedersen is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. He can be reached at 724-543-1303, ext. 1337, or

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