How The Rub Got It’s Start – The Rub’s BBQ History

In 2008 five guys sat around a poker table, dreaming of bar-b-que, beer, and blue ribbons. The chef, teacher, two businessmen, and contractor thought what fun it would be to enter contests, hang out together, and create a great set of memories for their kids.

Soon, they camped out to reserve a spot in the Great Lenexa BBQ Battle, then started practicing with weekend bar-b-ques for neighbors and friends. Their first Lenexa BBQ Battle resulted in a great party, lots of fun, and the desire to keep making it better & better.

The team started entering more contests, attending judging events, and perfecting their sauce. They cooked ribs, pork, brisket, chicken, sausage, corn, and even dessert. Much to their wives’ dismay, their garages swelled with smokers and fryers, and their fridges were filled with racks of ribs and ice cold beer. Best of all, their families became great friends, spending evenings and weekends talking ‘que and hanging out. They had a great time renting golf carts, making t-shirts, and keeping those poker games going. Their wives and kids became like family, and in 2010, they expanded, adding two more to the group, bringing the team to seven guys, their wives, and 18 kids.

All the while, friends and family salivated over the tangy sauce and tender meat. They spent June waiting for their invite to the greatest party with the best food at the Lenexa BBQ. They kept saying, “You need to open a restaurant! Dan’s bar-b-que is the best!” Awards started coming in…Platte City/Basswood Resort BBQ and the VFW Post 486 BBQ Challenge, both sponsored by the Kansas City Barbeque Society, netted the team prize ribbons.

In 2010, they entered the American Royal Barbeque Contest for the first time and walked away with 17th place in pulled pork and earned a perfect score in dessert! With 500 teams competing, this win proved the team had what it takes to be great.

New Year’s Day 2011, the team gathered ’round a backyard fire pit. The talk of a real restaurant was serious. Three investors came forward, locations were discussed, and Dan agreed to leave his corporate restaurant job and pursue his dream of managing his own restaurant. The three respective wives quickly dismissed their husbands’ silly drunken discussions, until one day “the perfect location” became available. Quickly talk turned to menus and furniture and marketing plans. Dan imagined a clean and modern fast-casual concept where diners weren’t at the mercy of wait staff but food was of the highest quality. The dream was realized one afternoon in the winter of 2011 when the men signed a lease, met with architects, and started cleaning the place out…to make the first home for The Rub Bar-B-Que and Catering.

Now all of Kansas City can share this great sauce and award-winning meat. Dan Janssen, Kevin Boetcher, and Dave Tines hope you’ll enjoy spending time at The Rub, their family-owned and operated bar-b-que!!