First Look at the Inside of Hi Lo


The ground level of the restaurant (with the mezzanine up in the back). Photo by Molly DeCoudreaux.


The beastly J&R smoker in the basement. Photo by Molly DeCoudreaux.

It’s time for a look at the progress of ~HI LO~, the upcoming barbecue restaurant from Scott Youkilis (Maverick, Hog & Rocks), Eric Rubin (Tres Agaves Products), and Dave Esler (Hog & Rocks). And it’s a big ‘un: 2,300 square feet, and it’s just across the street from Hog & Rocks. The lofty space has a dining hall vibe: there will be 80-90 seats, with a mezzanine level, big communal tables (along with two- and four-top tables), and a bar.

Executive chef Ryan Ostler (previously of Broken Record, Boulevard, Range, and Google) will be overseeing the menu of smoked and grilled meats, plus fish and vegetable dishes. Which is when the name starts making sense: Hi Lo refers to high heat (on the grill) and low heat on the smoker, as in low and slow. In the basement, there’s an epic cherry-red smoker that was built from scratch by J&R Manufacturing in Mesquite, Texas. Yeah, it’s the real deal. Some meats can be ordered at the counter by the pound (like most classic barbecue joints in Texas), but don’t look for just one style of ‘cue (although you can be damn sure the meats will be quality).

There will be a list of “adult refreshments” by Scott Beattie and Michael Lazar. The trick is to create cocktails that will complement (rather than compete) with the bold barbecue flavors. And, of course, there will be beers. Look for an early 2013 opening. Hours will be daily for lunch and nightly for dinner. More details coming soon!