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Ken & Jess Hess


Back in 2002, Ken Hess, then Catering Chef at the Greenbrier, cooked his first BBQ contest here in Lynchburg, thus igniting an incredible love and appreciation for the culture and flavors of American barbeque. After a 15-year love affair working alongside the country’s top pitmasters and winning World Championships, Ken Hess has returned to the city where it all began to share his passion for Smoak with all of you.

Ken and Jessica, are both classically trained chefs, traveled across the U.S., along with their three children, Ali, Maya, and Obi, to witness the masters at work firsthand. County Smoak draws inspiration from each of the great barbeque regions and those experiences while incorporating Virginia-sourced products as often as possible.

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Recipes by Ken & Jess Hess

Videos with Ken & Jess Hess

Serious Eats

“If you want to turn your grill into a beast, you need to get a GrillGrate.”

The GrillGrate Griddle and Defrost Plate

Available in 8 sizes
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