The name here is no joke: the owner and operator of this renowned Page restaurant is really, truly a Big John. Big John grew up near Dallas, and spent his formative years studying the fine arts of barbequing at the famous Louie Mueller Barbecue joint in Taylor, Texas. In time, Big John came to specialize in brisket and ribs, and he even became involved in competitive barbequing, a passion and pastime which he pursues to this day; he can be seen in his 40-foot BBQ trailer/food truck at competitions all throughout the region. However, in Page he is best known for his beloved Big John’s Texas Barbeque, which opened in 2006 with the goal of bringing authentic Texas-style BBQ to Arizona. Over a decade later, Big John’s Texas Barbeque is still going strong, and has been named one of the best places for BBQ in all of Arizona.
Big John’s BBQ Ambiance
Big John’s Texas Barbeque occupies a refurbished building, one that once housed a gas station—the massive BBQ smokers sit under what once would have been the canopy hanging over the station’s gas pumps: it’s quite the sight! As a result, it comes as no surprise that stepping into the restaurant here is like stepping into a slice of Americana. Unfussy linoleum floors and basic drop ceilings with fluorescent lighting sit below and above simple wooden tables and chairs in a variety of formats—2-person, 4-person, and picnic style, just to name a few. The walls are adorned with an eclectic mix of vintage Dr. Pepper clocks, neon Bud Light signs, large American flags, and Route 66 signs.
A real can’t-miss part of Big John’s Texas Barbeque is the outdoor seating area (which itself is entirely covered). There you’ll find rows of picnic tables covered in checkered tablecloths in front of a decent-sized stage. Vintage Texaco gas pumps, sculptures made out of propane gas tanks, and the occasional potted plant make up the surrounding décor. On a nice day, when the live band is kicking into gear, it makes for a spectacular spot to share a meal.
Big John’s BBQ Food
The menu at Big John’s Texas Barbeque is streamlined—there are only 14-numbered items from which to choose—yet it packs a punch, as all meats served at Big John’s Texas Barbeque are slow-smoked over a bed of oak and mesquite wood for a great length of time. Every one of the classic BBQ staples is available here: beef briskets, pulled pork sandwiches, and smoked baby back ribs. Other favorites include the hot link sausage plate, the BBQ nachos, and the chopped BBQ sandwich.
If you’re in the mood for something lighter, consider a fresh garden salad or Caesar salad; if you want the best of both worlds, you can even get one of these salads with your choice of beef brisket, pulled pork, or smoked chicken! If you just can’t decide, go ahead and order “The Sampler.” This hearty plate comes laden with beef brisket, pulled pork, spicy link sausage, 2 baby back pork ribs—basically everything they serve here but chicken—and a side of cowboy beans and potato salad or coleslaw.
Several different kinds of sides are available, but you’ll want to make sure not to miss the side slaw, as it is one of the well-known specialties here. For dessert, take your pick between a root-beer float, fruit cobbler served with ice cream, or a chocolate brownie with ice cream.
Big John’s BBQ Details
Big John’s Texas Barbeque is open every day of the week from 11:00am to 9:00pm. In addition to its regular menu, Big John’s Texas Barbeque also features a “Catering Menu” and a “Tour Group Menu.” Utilizing their mobile food truck, Big John’s Texas Barbeque can cater your personal event at any location in the region. Likewise, Big John’s Texas Barbeque will happily host large tour groups in its unique restaurant location. For either of these options, it is necessary to call ahead to inquire about additional details and/or to make arrangements in advance.
Two specific items for children are on the primary menu here: a BBQ beef or pulled pork sandwich, or a hot dog. Each one is served with a bag of chips and a soft drink.
An important note for those would-be guests with food allergies. At the center of every single table inside Big John’s Texas Barbeque is a large bowl of peanuts. If you are allergic to peanuts, this is quite possibly not the place for you.
Big John’s BBQ Neighborhood
Big John’s Texas Barbeque is located across from John C. Page Park, right at the intersection of S. Lake Powell Boulevard and S. Navajo Drive. These are two of the more prominent roads crisscrossing the heart of Page, Arizona—which means there are plenty of dining and shopping destinations close by. Likewise, all of the region’s major scenic attractions—Antelope Canyon, Canyon X, Glen Canyon Dam, and of course, Lake Powell—are a simple, short car ride away. The majestic Grand Canyon is even only approximately 2.5 hours to the southwest.
If you are seeking lodging in the area you are in luck, as many different hotels are found nearby. These establishments include Wingate by Wyndham Page Lake Powell, Holiday Inn Express & Suites Page-Lake Powell Area, Baymont by Wyndham Page Lake Powell, La Quinta Inn & Suites Page at Lake Powell, Best Western View of Lake Powell Hotel, Hyatt Place Page/Lake Powell, among many other selections.