“Thank goodness for the Cobb County Fire Department,” says Cody Taylor, who owns the Korean-inspired barbecue spot with his wife Jiyeon Lee. “They did a helluva job. They got the phone call at 10:45 p.m. and they had the fire down by 11:20 p.m. It was a big fire but it was contained.”
But although there was no damage to the kitchen or restaurant itself, the smokers were completely destroyed. “Everything looks normal until you go around and see the smokers,” Taylor says. He explains they are waiting for the county to investigate the cause of the fire and and waiting on insurance to decide if they will repair or replace the smokers, which he orders from Texas.
This isn’t the first time a fire has closed down Heirloom Market BBQ. Just two weeks after opening in 2010, a fire behind the fence in the neighboring apartment complex took out their entire walk-in cooler, forcing them to close. “That was a lot cheaper of a fire,” says Taylor.
Heirloom will reopen at 11 a.m. Wednesday with a limited menu they’ve cheekily titled “Up in Smoke.” The menu will have many of their most popular dishes, although a little less smoked meat. Taylor will be using his trailer to cook other cuts, such as the beef tri-tip for sandwiches or platters, which cooks more quickly than brisket. Taylor told me big smoker items such as brisket and ribs will have to be on hold for now. “I couldn’t even cook enough brisket on the trailer to keep up. It would be gone in an hour and a half,” he says. However, look for other fan favorites such as the spicy Korean pork sandwich with kimchi pickles and kimchi slaw or one of the many tacos Taylor plans to offer in the coming weeks. Since the kitchen is fully operational, Taylor also plans to offer his Korean fried chicken. He normally offers 32 orders of the fried chicken, but will be doubling it to 64 to make up for the smokers being down. The chicken, which is $14, is marinated in gochujang (Korean chili pepper paste) for 32 hours before being battered and fried twice. It’s served with a sweet and spicy sauce, kimchi pickles, and cucumber radish banchan. Get there early because it is bound to run out. 2243 Akers Mill Road Southeast, 770-612-2502