By Amir Vera, The Progress-Index
PETERSBURG — Saucy’s Sit-down has been recognized as one of the top 25 new restaurants in the state by the Official Tourism Travel Blog of the Commonwealth of Virginia, part of the Virginia Tourism Corporation.
Tom McCormack, owner of Saucy’s Sit-down and Walk-up, said the recognition is an honor because of the many options in the state. Erich Wolfgang, pitmaster/smokeman at Saucy’s, said the evolution of the restaurant has been surreal.
“It feels really like a dream come true just to have worked so hard in the shipping container for so long and then to finally have a real brick and mortar restaurant with the same great food and actually more items on the menu than what we were able to offer,” Wolfgang said.
Saucy’s originally began as Saucy’s Walk-up in 2010, which was based out of a shipping container at the corner of Bollingbrook and Fifth Street in Petersburg with five employees. Thanks to word of mouth, online reviews and an article in the 2012 edition of Southern Living magazine’s “The South’s Best Butt: 20 of the Best Barbecue Joints in the South,” Saucy’s has become nationally known. The sit-down restaurant opened earlier this year.
“Back when we first opened in 2010, we would look out of the window of [Saucy’s Walk-up] because it faces the highway and we would see 100,000 cars going by a day,” McCormack said. “We’re starting to see the fruits of that after being open for five years.”
Saucy’s now has a staff of about 20. He added that nowadays there will be moments when he notices every car has a different out-of-state license plate, especially on weekends.
As far as looking toward the future, McCormack said he’d like to expand the menu and start doing specials. He said he’d also like his business to focus on catering, which they are doing a lot of now.
“We’d also like to open up a second location,” he said. “Whether or not that’s a shipping container or another brick and mortar is to be seen.”
The ultimate goal for McCormack, though, is to be the first Old Towne restaurant on the blue sign for Bank Street on Interstate 95 North.