Is Sonny's BBQ going out of business

Is Sonny’s Bbq Going Out Of Business – Discover the All Secrets Everything You Should Know!

Sonny’s BBQ, an iconic name synonymous with finger-licking ribs and savory BBQ sauce, has recently been under the scrutiny of rumors. Whispers about closures and changes have left BBQ enthusiasts questioning the fate of this beloved establishment. 

In this exploration, we delve into the heart of Sonny’s BBQ, its recent transformations, and what it all means for fans.

A Legacy in Smoke:

1. Discovering Sonny’s BBQ and Its Culinary Heritage:

Founded in 1968 by Floyd “Sonny” Tillman and his wife Lucille, Sonny’s BBQ began as a humble eatery in Gainesville, Fla. Over the years, it evolved into a chain of restaurants, gaining nationwide popularity for its slow-smoked meats and southern sides. 

With a menu boasting St. Louis Ribs, baby back ribs, pulled pork, beef brisket, and an array of tempting appetizers and desserts, Sonny’s became a tradition for BBQ enthusiasts.

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Clearing the Air – Is Sonny’s BBQ Going Out of Business?

1. Debunking the Rumors and Understanding Recent Closures:

Contrary to speculations, Sonny’s BBQ is not closing its doors entirely. While some locations have experienced closures, it’s vital to recognize that Sonny’s operates as a chain with multiple franchises. 

Debunking the Rumors and Understanding Recent Closures
Source: slidebusiness

Individual closures do not signal the demise of the brand. Recent shut-downs were deliberate decisions influenced by factors such as remodeling delays and regulatory challenges.

Behind the Scenes – Understanding Recent Changes:

1. Exploring Reasons for Sonny’s BBQ Location Closures:

Some Sonny’s BBQ restaurants faced challenges leading to their closures. For instance, the Oakwood location lost its franchise due to remodeling delays. Others shut down due to regulatory issues, making it impractical to continue under the Sonny’s BBQ brand.

It’s crucial to view these closures as specific to certain franchises rather than reflective of the entire brand’s health.

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The Flavor Continues – Sonny’s BBQ’s Financial Standing:

1. Assessing the Financial Health Amidst Changes:

Despite closures, Sonny’s BBQ remains financially stable. Annual sales per restaurant averaged around $3.044 million by the end of 2021, showcasing the brand’s resilience. 

Assessing the Financial Health Amidst Changes
Source: foodmarket

The impact of the COVID-19 pandemic did lead to a temporary decline in revenue, but the overall financial picture suggests a robust and enduring business.

New Smoke on the Horizon – Mitchell’s BBQ Takes Center Stage:

1. Introducing Mitchell’s BBQ – A Fresh Chapter for Fort Myers:

As Sonny’s BBQ in Fort Myers bids farewell after 36 years, a new era begins. Mitchell’s BBQ, operated by Terry Mitchell, emerges in its place, promising a continuation of BBQ delights. 

With a retained staff of 42 employees, Mitchell’s BBQ brings back the salad bar and introduces new offerings, including ribs, chicken, catfish, shrimp, and white cheddar mac and cheese.


1. Is Sonny’s BBQ Going Out of Business?

No, Sonny’s BBQ is not going out of business. Recent closures are specific to certain locations and do not signify the brand’s overall closure.

2. Is Sonny’s BBQ Facing Financial Challenges?

No, despite closures, Sonny’s BBQ remains financially stable, with impressive annual sales per restaurant.

3. Who Bought Sonny’s BBQ?

Sonny’s BBQ has undergone multiple ownership changes. In the 1990s, it was acquired by the private equity firm Brookwood Associates.

4. How Many Locations Did Sonny’s BBQ Have?

Sonny’s BBQ reached its peak with around 150 locations in the 2000s. Presently, it has over 100 operational locations across eight states.

5. Can I Get a Senior Discount at Sonny’s BBQ?

Yes, many Sonny’s BBQ locations offer a senior discount. The specific discount may vary by location.


Sonny’s BBQ, despite recent changes, stands resilient. The closures are not a curtain call but a prelude to new beginnings, as seen with Mitchell’s BBQ. 

BBQ enthusiasts can continue to relish the distinct flavors, and with financial stability, Sonny’s BBQ promises to keep the smoke rising for years to come.

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