The deal is going down over the next few days, but Stacy Phipps, owner and pit master of Stacy's Smokehouse (now closed) and Stacy's Pit Stop in Sunnyslope, is planning on turning Circle H Barbecue, in Central Phoenix, into his own 'cue joint by the first part of next year.
"Things are getting better for me. I've got a better team," Phipps says on this latest move. "Now I can get back in the kitchen and do what God blessed me to do. I've even made peace with my ex."
Phipps is purchasing Circle H Barbecue (now closed), the freestanding building on the northwest corner of Camelback and Seventh Avenue, from Arizona native Bill Sandweg, who also owns Copper Star Coffee just a few blocks south. Sandweg opened Circle H, named as an homage to his grandfather, last December.
Phipps tells me he plans on turning the building into a second location of Stacy's Pit Stop BBQ. Unlike the original location, a stand Phipps opened in Sunnyslope in June, the new space offers indoor seating.
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For the menu, Phipps says in addition to the barbecue items -- hot links, brisket, and chicken covered in his signature sweet sauce, plus sandwiches and sides -- he's planning on introducing new dishes like jerk chicken and soul food fare such as fried chicken, smothered chicken, and pork chops.
Phipps has no plans to close his Sunnyslope location of Stacy's Pit Stop BBQ, where, he says, the neighborhood has welcomed him with open arms.
"Sunnyslope's been nothing but a blessing," he tells me. "The people there accepted us."