A crowd of 100 celebrated alongside Dubz BBQ owner George Dubbaneh on Nov. 30 for the grand reopening of the restaurant on Aidan Lane near the Port Charlotte-North Port border.
Dubbaneh, 27, was all smiles as staff, family, friends and members of both the Charlotte County and North Port chambers of commerce were on hand to offer support. Dubz BBQ was closed for five months as it underwent a major renovation, said General Manager Angelina Scarola, who worked with Dubbaneh when they were servers at a restaurant in 2018.
“He grew up in the restaurant world,” Scarola said. “He always wanted to own one.”
Members of Dubbaneh’s family have three restaurants in Port Charlotte. His father owns The Soup Jungle, his uncle owns Wally’s Southern Style BBQ and a relative owns Sam’s Subs.”
To hone his business acumen, Dubbaneh went to Florida Gulf Coast University’s Lutgert College of Business before following in his family’s footsteps by becoming a restaurateur.
He also mastered the art of promotion, providing short videos and photos on social media, including Facebook, YouTube, and Instagram. Some videos show him preparing food before it is smoked.
Scarola shared some insight into Dubbaneh’s success. In June 2020, he opened Dubz BBQ, what at the time, Scarola called a seven-table, Subway-style takeout spot.
Opening during the height of the pandemic, it prompted Dubbaneh to shift to a catering-style business where he’d pack up meals to go.
As his business took off, Dubbaneh acquired the storefront next to him, and Dubz BBQ expanded to a 112-seat restaurant with a full liquor bar, while also offering takeout.
Remodeling took five months, and Dubz BBQ hosted a soft opening in September.
“The portions are gigantic,” Scarola said, adding that the most popular items on the menu are the ribs and brisket.
She said the restaurant smokes and prepares about 200 pounds of meat every day.
The restaurant’s menu offers items not found at other barbecue establishments. There’s a Pork Belly Burnt Ends appetizer, in which the meat is dipped in a homemade sweet Thai honey sauce and topped with sesame seeds.
Homemade banana pudding and Reese’s cheesecake are popular dessert items, and then there are a variety of sandwiches, pulled pork and brisket.
Sausage and chicken are also on the menu, served in a variety of ways. Different types of smoked meats are offered in combination platters of varying size.
Dubz BBQ is open from 11 a.m. to 9 p.m. weekdays and 11 a.m. to 10 p.m. weekends.