Prepare yourself for a new style of cuisine in Windsor.

As WindsorEats mentioned back in August, Chef Ryan Odette, formerly of Mamo Bistro, is set to launch a new venture with Smoke and Spice Southern Barbeque Restaurant.

The style of cooking is not completely new to Odette, having worked in New Orleans earlier in his career. After a successful 4 year run with Mamo, Ryan decided to finally give in to his desire of opening a Southern BBQ style restaurant in Windsor.

“When I was down South, and even before that, I’ve always liked that style of food. It’s casual and approachable for everybody”, says Odette.

His passion for it really started to get going two years ago, after reading a blog of a similar styled restaurant near Nashville, Tennessee.

“I just emailed the owner and told him I was interested in learning.” The owner then invited Ryan down to Nashville and the next thing he knew he was in Tennessee honing his BBQ and Smoking skills. Odette even sent his employees to the Tennessee restaurant for training.

Smoke & Spice Southern Barbeque Restaurant
Smoke & Spice Southern Barbeque Restaurant

For those who have never had real southern BBQ cooking, Ryan explains that its more than just ribs and chicken.

“The smoke is more like an ingredient, like salt and pepper.”

After seeing the size of the smoker and learning it took more than two weeks to install, I take his word for it. Whoever cooks with a contraption that large must definitely know what they are talking about.

The aromas emanating from the place had me salivating the moment I walked in the door. Ryan let me know the smells that actually interrupted me during the interview are the sauces they are testing for the opening.

After a quick glance at the menu, Ryan lets loose on what he already expects to be a customer favourite.

“Pulled pork is the backbone of Smoke and Spice,” he explains. “We are more like a Memphis style BBQ. It is incorporated into many dishes.”

When asked how he decides which recipes work best Ryan explains, “We’ve been bringing samples to all the local businesses up and down Ottawa Street“. Lucky people.

Smoke and Spice opens Thursday, September 18, 2008. Take a peek at their menu.