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Gardner's Barbecue

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American, Barbecue, Family Fare
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1331 N Wesleyan Blvd (Highway 301), Rocky Mount, NC 27803
+1 252-446-2983
Website
Today
11:00 am - 9:00 pm
Closed now
See all hours
Hours:
Sun - Thu 11:00 am - 9:00 pm
Fri - Sat 11:00 am - 9:30 pm
Dining options: Dinner, Lunch, Dessert, Buffet, Takeout
Description: Gardner's Foods consists of three restaurants in Rocky Mount, North...
Gardner's Foods consists of three restaurants in Rocky Mount, North Carolina, as well as a catering and wholesale division. Everything began in 1972 when experienced food operators, Gerry and Jim Gardner, decided to develop a good ole country cooking restaurant that specialized in Eastern North Carolina barbecue, as well as Southern fried chicken and its famous Southern style collards. Our 301 North Location seats 250 people and has a huge buffet with such items as * Fried Chicken* Baked Chicken * Pork Barbecue* Turkey Barbecue* Brunswick Stew * Chicken Pastry* Cabbage* Squash* Peas* Boiled Potatoes* Rice & Gravy* Fish* Salad Bar* Dessert Bar Gardner Foods is USDA inspected. We cook only whole hogs, and our Barbecue is cooked Eastern North Carolina style. It's seasoned with crushed red pepper and vinegar as well as a few secret ingredients. Our barbecue is deboned and mixed by hand - prepared specially for you.Turkey Barbecue:Gardner's debones and mixes whole turkeys by hand, and is also prepared Eastern North Carolina style. Turkey barbecue is the perfect alternative for our customers who are not able to eat or do not prefer pork. Southern Style Collards:Gardner's southern style collards are cooked, seasoned, chopped. All Our southern style collards are a unique product that looks good on any plate. Gardner's also has a great thick and hearty Brunswick Stew that includes two meats and lots of vegetables. Our Vegetable Soup with chicken is also a local favorite. Voted Best BBQ in Rocky Mount 2012. Voted best hush puppies in Rocky Mount 2012.
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TripAdvisor Reviewer Highlights

Read all 103 reviews
Visitor rating
  • 24
    Excellent
  • 31
    Very good
  • 16
    Average
  • 18
    Poor
  • 14
    Terrible
Rating summary
  • Food
    3 of 5 stars
    Service
    3.5 of 5 stars
  • Value
    3.5 of 5 stars
    Atmosphere
    3 of 5 stars
Good eats

Can never go to Rocky Mount without stopping into Gardners for chopped barbecue. In fact we take the cooler to get some thats frozen to bring back to Pa.

4 of 5 starsReviewed April 9, 2015
James M
via mobile
Good for:
  • Large groups
  • Dining on a budget
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103 Reviews from our TripAdvisor Community

Date | Rating
  • English first
  • Any
English first
Rocky Mount, North Carolina
Reviewer
5 reviews 5 reviews
4 restaurant reviews
5 of 5 stars Reviewed May 19, 2015 NEW

If you like ENC BBQ then this is a must stop. Also if you have a taste for Southern home style cooking them this is as good as it get's. The price is right.

Was this review helpful? Yes
NC
Top Contributor
88 reviews 88 reviews
65 restaurant reviews
27 helpful votes 27 helpful votes
2 of 5 stars Reviewed May 4, 2015

Got here at 1100am and ribs, bbq chicken were cold. Brunswick stew was just bad. Chicken and pastry liquid taste like it come out of can. Gardeners is off my list for dinning.

Was this review helpful? Yes
Milford
Top Contributor
73 reviews 73 reviews
44 restaurant reviews
28 helpful votes 28 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed April 21, 2015

Fried chicken the best. The buffet was awesome-everything hot and tasty. I just kept going back for more-didn't feel bad-so did every one else. Don't get fried chicken like this in Maine. Keep up the good work!

Was this review helpful? Yes
Richmond, Virginia
Senior Contributor
27 reviews 27 reviews
13 restaurant reviews
16 helpful votes 16 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed April 12, 2015

This is my family's favorite spot for NC BBQ and fried chicken. We drive down from Richmond, VA a few times a year. We don't eat fried chicken anywhere else, and there is no BBQ like this in Virginia. We love the buffet, and in the past few years the buffet has grown with more choices. For us, we stick... More 

Was this review helpful? Yes
GardnerBBQ, Guest Relations Manager at Gardner's Barbecue, responded to this review

Thanks for stopping by Gardner's on your travels and for taking the time to leave such a wonderful review. We are famous for our juicy chicken and all the fixins and we are delighted to hear that you had a wonderful expereince. We continue to strive to provide you with "all there is to love about Eastern NC BBQ" and... More 

Reviewer
4 reviews 4 reviews
4 of 5 stars Reviewed April 9, 2015 via mobile

Can never go to Rocky Mount without stopping into Gardners for chopped barbecue. In fact we take the cooler to get some thats frozen to bring back to Pa.

Was this review helpful? Yes
GardnerBBQ, Guest Relations Manager at Gardner's Barbecue, responded to this review

Thanks for stopping by Gardner's on your travels and for taking the time to leave such a wonderful review. We are famous for our juciy chicken and all the fixins and we are delighted to hear that you had a wonderful expereince. We continue to strive to provide you with "all there is to love about Eastern NC BBQ" and... More 

Raleigh, North Carolina
Senior Contributor
34 reviews 34 reviews
7 restaurant reviews
12 helpful votes 12 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed April 8, 2015

I loved the food at Gardner's. Great BBQ, veggies and hushpuppies but I visited twice this weekend and on both occasions I experienced the worst customer service EVER. The second visit was thru the drive thru (didn't enjoy the first experience inside) and they were even rude at the drive thru. I would not go back even if the food... More 

Was this review helpful? Yes
GardnerBBQ, Guest Relations Manager at Gardner's Barbecue, responded to this review

If you would be so kind as to contact us via email on our website or call our district manager at 252-907-3871 so we can figure out which location you were at and rectify any issues you may have experienced. We hope to see you back and give you service with a smile. More 

Taylorsville, Kentucky
Top Contributor
76 reviews 76 reviews
53 restaurant reviews
11 helpful votes 11 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed March 17, 2015 via mobile

Run of the mill Carolina pulled pork. I can't call it 'Q because there's no flame, no smoke, no red sticky stuff. Apparently "tar heels" don't know better. Meat cooked and hacked to very soft consistency. I'm sure the elderly, toothless crowd likes it like this. I wanted to try everything so I got the buffet. Most things typical of... More 

Was this review helpful? Yes
GardnerBBQ, Guest Relations Manager at Gardner's Barbecue, responded to this review

Our locals do love us and we have kept our tradtion going for over 40 years. While our "Barbeque" is different from what you expect barbeque to be (sticky red sauce) it's what people in our area know bbq as. You won't find sticky red sauce here. Simply put, It's not what Eastern NC BBQ is. We usually have two... More 

Harrisonburg, Virginia
Top Contributor
151 reviews 151 reviews
125 restaurant reviews
57 helpful votes 57 helpful votes
2 of 5 stars Reviewed March 11, 2015 via mobile

i went here over lunch as I love BBQ and thought buffet be great lunch alternative. It was very crowded that shows locals like it. I was very disappointed. I know it's southern but everything didn't need to be covered in grease or its own juices. The pulled pork was dry and no flavor. Even adding the vinegar didn't help.... More 

Was this review helpful? Yes
North Carolina
Top Contributor
68 reviews 68 reviews
43 restaurant reviews
13 helpful votes 13 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed March 5, 2015 via mobile

I did not like this place. But then I am a Yankee and don't have a taste for southern food. In fairness there were quite a few people that seemed to be enjoying it. Personally I hated the food. And there were very few selections I wanted to try. So my take is. Yankees stay away Southerners enjoy and don't... More 

Was this review helpful? Yes
GardnerBBQ, Guest Relations Manager at Gardner's Barbecue, responded to this review

At Gardner's, we strive to provide a delicious meal with great guest service and make every effort to create a safe, clean and friendly dining experience. I would agree with you that our restaurant is a very different experience than what you might be used to but we should have something to please ever palette. You may have been in... More 

Accokeek, Maryland
Top Contributor
51 reviews 51 reviews
30 restaurant reviews
48 helpful votes 48 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed February 26, 2015

I went to Gardner's Barbecue to get barbecue for my family. I bought 2 pints of barbecue, cole slaw and hushpuppies. While there, I saw delicious looking golden fried chicken; I ordered only 4 pieces. BIG MISTAKE....I should have ordered much more of everything. When I arrived home, the food was devoured in minutes and I had to make another... More 

Was this review helpful? Yes
GardnerBBQ, Guest Relations Manager at Gardner's Barbecue, responded to this review

Thanks for stopping by Gardner's on your travels and for taking the time to leave such a wonderful review. We are famous for our juciy chicken and all the fixins and we are delighted to hear that you had a wonderful expereince. We continue to strive to provide you with "all there is to love about Eastern NC BBQ" and... More 

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Restaurant Details

Location and Contact Information

  • Address: 1331 N Wesleyan Blvd (Highway 301), Rocky Mount, NC 27803
  • Location: United States  >  North Carolina (NC)  >  Rocky Mount
  • Phone Number: +1 252-446-2983

Price and Cuisine

  • Average Prices: USD 3 - 15
  • Cuisine: American, Barbecue, Family Fare

Restaurant Characteristics

  • Good for: Large groups, Dining on a budget

Description

Gardner's Foods consists of three restaurants in Rocky Mount, North Carolina, as well as a catering and wholesale division. Everything began in 1972 when experienced food operators, Gerry and Jim Gardner, decided to develop a good ole country cooking restaurant that specialized in Eastern North Carolina barbecue, as well as Southern fried chicken and its famous Southern style collards. Our 301 North Location seats 250 people and has a huge buffet with such items as * Fried Chicken* Baked Chicken * Pork Barbecue* Turkey Barbecue* Brunswick Stew * Chicken Pastry* Cabbage* Squash* Peas* Boiled Potatoes* Rice & Gravy* Fish* Salad Bar* Dessert Bar Gardner Foods is USDA inspected. We cook only whole hogs, and our Barbecue is cooked Eastern North Carolina style. It's seasoned with crushed red pepper and vinegar as well as a few secret ingredients. Our barbecue is deboned and mixed by hand - prepared specially for you.Turkey Barbecue:Gardner's debones and mixes whole turkeys by hand, and is also prepared Eastern North Carolina style. Turkey barbecue is the perfect alternative for our customers who are not able to eat or do not prefer pork. Southern Style Collards:Gardner's southern style collards are cooked, seasoned, chopped. All Our southern style collards are a unique product that looks good on any plate. Gardner's also has a great thick and hearty Brunswick Stew that includes two meats and lots of vegetables. Our Vegetable Soup with chicken is also a local favorite. Voted Best BBQ in Rocky Mount 2012. Voted best hush puppies in Rocky Mount 2012.
Open Hours
Sunday
11:00 am - 9:00 pm
Monday
11:00 am - 9:00 pm
Tuesday
11:00 am - 9:00 pm
Wednesday
11:00 am - 9:00 pm
Thursday
11:00 am - 9:00 pm
Friday
11:00 am - 9:30 pm
Saturday
11:00 am - 9:30 pm

Questions & Answers

Questions? Get answers from Gardner's Barbecue staff and past visitors.
Posting guidelines
Typical questions asked:
  • Do you have gluten-free options?
  • Is there a dress code?
  • Do you allow dogs on the outdoor patio?