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Marco Lagambina opens BBQ New Restaurant & Blues Bar on Valley Street in Manchester. Emelia Attridge photo.




BBQ New
333 Valley St., Manchester
782-5054
ilovebbqnew.com




Breaking all the rules
Live tunes and smoked barbecue at BBQ New

05/01/14



 There’s a different kind of barbecue being cooked up in the Queen City.

Marco Lagambina opened BBQ New Restaurant & Blues Bar in March, across from Gill Stadium on Valley Street.
He said he named it BBQ New because it’s time for, well, something new.
“I break all the rules. If you watch the cooking shows, whenever they have the barbecue competitions, what do you hear them all say? ‘Well, the meat is supposed to be like this. You’re supposed to cook it like that, and your rub is supposed to be like this,” he said. “The way I do my rub, the way I do my sauce, the way I grill it — it does not conform to any of the ‘rules.’ ... It’s time that we break away from the hundred years of the same-old, same-old and have something new.”
You can’t label Lagambina’s barbecue as Kansas City, Texas or Carolina style, he said. He’s designed his own approach based on his experience over the years. For example, Lagambina said that Kansas City and Memphis styles are too sweet for him, and while Carolina sauce is his favorite, he doesn’t serve it at his restaurant. His own sauce is designed with notes of Carolina’s vinegar influence. 
The restaurant’s smoker is outside, so you may get a whiff in the parking lot before going in. He only uses hickory wood and cooks the barbecue so that there’s just a hint of smoke. 
The menu at BBQ New includes baby back ribs, pulled pork and brisket, as well as other items like guacamole and chips, pizza and sandwiches, including a po’ boy. 
Like the barbecue, much of the menu is based on recipes Lagambina has collected and adapted over the years. (He’s been making the guacamole since he was 15.) Lagambina grew up in the restaurant industry with his mother, he said. Although he left the restaurant business for a time, he said, he never stopped cooking.
BBQ New also features live music on Friday and Saturday nights. Lagambina said he loves music just as much as he loves barbecue. A feature wall in the dining room includes posters from blues and rock ’n’ roll legends. But Lagambina doesn’t want the music to hog the spotlight. 
“It is a backdrop for the food,” he said. “I like blues. We’re bringing in more country and rock and roll. … But do I want my focus to be on the music? No. I want my focus to be on the food.” 
 
As seen in the May 1, 2014 issue of the Hippo.





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