By Jose Corea
From Barbeque Ribs, Fried Fish, Chicken Wings & Southern Food, Mr. G’s offers all
A particular part of American tradition has come to Riverside thanks to Mr. Donald Raye Gibson. Mr. Gibson with his wife Sandra have opened Mr. G's BBQ Restaurant and Catering; a barbeque place featuring "down home southern cooking"- a tradition famous for transforming common ingredients into luscious and impressive entrées.
Southern cooking stems from the soul tradition and has close associations with the African-American community. As slaves, African Americans would ingeniously work with the ingredients at hand, incorporating a broad variety of vegetables and parts of meat to create new dishes. Leftover fish became croquettes, stale bread became bread pudding, and each part of the pig had its own special dish.
Gibson has brought a part of that tradition passed down from his mother and their Lousiana custom to southern California. Mr. G's features southern style cooking that includes, catfish, ox tails, salmon croquettes, fried chicken, mustard greens, hot wings, and of course BBQ. His BBQ selection extends from pork ribs, beef, chicken, to hot links. Furthermore, Mr. G's menu is huge including full menus for breakfast, lunch and dinner.
Gibson has honed his cooking skills in the tradition that southern cooking was prepared. For African-American slaves, the evening meal was a time for families to gather together in a communal atmosphere, This tradition of communal meals became the perfect environment for conversation and the reciting of oral history and storytelling. Gibson has had a lot of experience cooking for his eight children, and then more experience with the addition of fifteen grandchildren to his table.
When asked what made him want to establish his own restaurant, he answered that family was the most important factor. The second factor he stated was "I am a very good cook."
Gibson prides the use of his own special sauces in his cooking, "It was just my mom and me when I was growing up," he recalls. "I learned all about spices and seasoning. I barbecue ribs, chickens and beef and I use a lot of sauces. I use my own special sauce. That's my secret."
Gibson's experience also includes being the owner and operating manager of House of Burgers, a restaurant established in Compton. Before opening Mr. G's BBQ Restaurant and Catering in June 2007, he was doing private catering jobs. Now Mr. Gibson states his business does a lot of catering for private parties. Recently he catered an event for Nestle for 800 people.
Gibson says you will find southern charm and great food at his restaurant. He professes his restaurant is unique because "we are the only restaurant in this part of town that sells southern food and BBQ."
Mr. G's BBQ Restaurant and Catering is located at 8022 Limonite Ave. Riverside, CA 92509. It is open from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. Sunday through Wednesday and 8 a.m. to 10 p.m. Thursday through Saturday. for more information call 951.681.1993 or visit www.mrgsbbq.com.
Come visit Mr. G's BBQ Restaurant and Catering and experience "down home southern cooking."