After years of partnership, Donna and Terry Reinhardt decided to take their barbecue recipes to the next level by opening a restaurant in Red Bud.
There was one little detail first. They needed to get married.
“We knew we would open a restaurant,” Donna said recently at The Burnt End. “If we’re going to do this, and go into business together, then we need to really do it.”
They married in September in front of a smoker at a competition in Murphysboro.
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The Reinhardts, of Red Bud, opened Burnt End on March 1. They’ve been busy ever since, often working 12 to 14 hour days.
The couple have a number of awards, including the 2014 World Seafood Championship, where they won with a King Crab Leg Beer Brie Pot Pie. Before and after that, Terry had entered and won a number of smoking competitions, he says.
“I just wanted to experience one. I’d always dibbled and dabbled. ... Went to the first time with an itty-bitty smoker and a Weber, not knowing nothing.”
He did well at that one, and even better at the next.
“Them stupid little trophies did this all,” he said, waving to the bar and tables at The Burnt End.
Some of those trophies and ribbons are on the wall behind the bar, but Donna says they don’t want to rely on those for their business. Their catering business has been doing well for years; people in the area know them already.
As for the restaurant, “it was time to do it or time to quit talking about it,” Donna said.
Terry does all the smoking, and all with pecan wood. Meats are rubbed and then lightly sauced. Sauces are barbecue, sweet chili, hot, trashed Cajun, and lemon pepper. Best sellers are ribs ($22 for a full rack with two sides; $15 for a half rack and two sides) and pork steak ($12, with two sides.)
Donna makes all the sides and desserts in house. The potato salad has a sour-cream base, and is “an old Southern recipe,” the Alabama native says. She’ll admit the mac and cheese has butter — “of course!” — and four types of cheeses, but won’t divulge more. They also have cole slaw, hush puppies and sweet potato fries.
There are no desserts on the menu because “I want to make what I want to make,” Donna says, but the bread pudding with bourbon caramel sauce is a staple. She also likes making cheesecake, also with bourbon toasted pecan sauce.
The Burnt End “has probably one of, if not the best, whiskey and bourbon selection in Red Bud, of a 15-mile radius of anywhere around,” said Michael Murphy, of Koerner Distributing, who was there Tuesday for the weekly order. The Burnt End’s selections include Blanton’s and other products from Buffalo Trace distillery.
There are several beers on tap, including Waterloo’s Stubborn German, and Donna says there is room on the taps for more local brewers.
The Burnt End
- Address: 101 E. Market St., Red Bud
- Phone: 618-282-2271
- Serves appetizers, salads, sandwiches, platters
- Seats: 65
- Reservations: No. “You may have to wait,” Donna said.
- Catering: Yes
- Hours: Open 11 a.m. to 8 p.m., closed Tuesdays and Wednesdays