Adding to the city’s recent reputation as the grilling capital of the country is the launch of Hereford’s first dedicated BBQ joint.

Following rave reviews for The Beefy Boys and the Rule of Tum pop-ups, ‘BBQs & Brews’ is due to open in September and will be the latest face of Commercial Road’s Hop Pole, formerly O’Neil’s.

Billed as a “carnivorous celebration of American Deep South pit barbecue” the restaurant/bar will bring together the best of US cooking with the finest in Herefordshire ingredients.

For years it has been managing director Marc Craddock’s dream to open a BBQ restaurant that highlights Hereford beef and booze heritage.

Doors will close at the Hop Pole on September 8 and reopen as BBQs and Brews on September 25, with an additional 24 staff members.

General manager Nikki Ball said the new-look bar-restaurant will still keep its status as one of Hereford’s premier sports bars, screening live sports on televisions at the front of the bar and extending its license for events like the Superbowl.

However it will now feature an open kitchen, where diners can see the chefs use imported American ‘smokers’ to slow cook the Herefordshire beef for up to 18 hours before serving it.

At the bar the local theme will continue, with Wye Valley ales lining up alongside Weston’s and Orgasmic cider and wide range of craft beers and bourbon-based cocktails.

Ms Ball added that BBQ is the fastest growing food trend in the UK.

For information on working at BBQs and Brews, or “to be the first in the Bull Pen” at one of its preview night, visit