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World-class barbecue champ to open Spartanburg restaurant

Krys Merryman //April 28, 2023//

World-class barbecue champ to open Spartanburg restaurant

Krys Merryman //April 28, 2023//

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A world-class barbecue champion will bring his expertise to downtown Spartanburg with the opening of a new restaurant.

Smoking Butt Heads is set to open this summer in the historic Greenewald's building at 111 W. Main St., the space formerly occupied by Wild Wing Cafe.

Fueled by World Champion pitmaster Todd Smith, and local restaurateur and brewery owner Nate Tomforde, Smoking Butt Heads will feature competition-quality barbecue, a taproom serving up local brews, and a dedicated space for live music and private events, according to a news release.

Smith has been immersed in the competition barbecue world since 2012, winning multiple championships, including Master Series World Champion at the 2020 KCBS World Invitational. In 2018, he opened his first brick-and-mortar restaurant, SBH on Pelham Road in Greenville. After a successful run for the restaurant, Smith sold SBH in 2022 so he could retire, the release said.

“I never intended to open another restaurant, but when I heard about the opportunity to partner with Nate for a beer and barbecue concept in the heart of downtown Spartanburg, I couldn't pass it up,” he said.

Tomforde has been an entrepreneur in the Carolinas for nearly 20 years and founded the self-serve beer concept Pour Taproom in 2014. He has since opened more than 16 locations for various taproom, brewery and restaurant options. He currently owns Southernside Brewing Co. and Double Stamp Brewery and has several other projects in the works across the Upstate, the release said.

Smokin Butt Heads will be Tomforde’s first location to open under the newly formed Crafted Community Concepts, an ownership and development group that creates food, beverage and entertainment concepts, with family-friendly environments.

“We are thrilled to be teaming up with Todd to serve up his award-winning barbecue and create a place where the Spartanburg community can gather to enjoy good food and fellowship,” said Tomforde.

The menu at Smoking Butt Heads will carry Smith’s award-winning barbecue, using drums rather than a traditional smoker to give their meats a unique flavor. The restaurant will offer dine-in and to-go food, as well as on- and off-site catering. The taproom and bar will be stocked with local beers and craft cocktails, and the upstairs space will serve as a venue for multiple live music performances every week as well as private events.