Rob Geisler has not only found his niche, but he has seemingly found a way to bring his passion to plenty of people.
Less than two months since first firing up his barbecue pit, Geisler’s business, Fasty’s BBQ Joint has increased the traffic through the east side of town substantially. The once busy produce stand, turned Christmas Tree lot at 1936 E. F St., is now a popular barbecue stop in Oakdale.
“I moved out here and saw an opportunity,” Geisler, a Texas transplant stated of his relocation to the area in late 2013. “There really weren’t any barbecue joints, but a lot of taco trucks. So I starting researching and found this (service) trailer at a place in Georgia.
“The places out here do more of a grilling,” he continued. “Where I come from barbecue is more of a slow smoke over indirect heat.”
The barbecue master shared he had his first experience opening a barbecue location following college over 20 years ago in Texas.
“I always told myself if the opportunity was right, I’d sell barbecue again,” he stated, adding that he has little to no desire to own a traditional restaurant setting, which makes the current set up all the better.
“This is the perfect fit,” Geisler said of the East F location. “I want to turn out an excellent product that everybody can afford. I just want to sell barbecue, but I don’t want a restaurant. With the fruit stand area it gives me opportunity to create a seating area for customers that don’t want it to go. I lease all the property around it, including the house so it makes it all very convenient.”
Currently Fasty’s offers five types of meats: tri-tip, pulled pork, baby back pork ribs, Texas made sausage and smoked turkey breast. He also features a side menu of coleslaw, potato salad, beans and potato chips. He does the prepping and cooking for everything served but beverages and chips himself.
“I’m going to stick with this for a little bit,” he said of the existing menu. “Everybody is really liking the food. The most overwhelming response is the crowds and the welcome we have received. It’s just been amazing.”
With warmer weather on the way, it’s likely the side-of-the-road eatery is only going to get busier.
“It’s just a simple trailer,” the chef added of the unassuming yet colorful bright orange box which holds his work space, “but the barbecue pit is the Rolls Royce of barbecue pits. It’s exactly what I wanted.”
Depending on the cut of meat, slow cook time can take as much as 18 hours before ready for service. According to Geisler the pit can cook over 500 pounds of meat at a time. Currently he cooks close to 300 pounds of meat on any given Thursday, Friday or Saturday. While Wednesday traffic may not be as ‘heavy’ Fasty’s is typically sold out of meat by 5 p.m. every day it is open.
Geisler and his staff of two do their best each Wednesday through Sunday to keep up with the hungry patrons that begin pulling up shortly after the 11 a.m. start time.
“In the next couple of weeks I’d like to increase the staff a bit,” he stated. “I would like to stay open at least 45 minutes after sundown. I need to increase the staff before I can increase the menu.
“I hate turning customers away,” Geisler said of his current sold out closings. “I’m trying to plan and look at what I can do to accommodate the customers and use the space better.”
To say business has been brisk in the early going is an understatement.
“It’s just been incredible,” he reiterated of the overall reception from the customers and community. “We see the lines and the people waiting and we hate to see that. I don’t like to wait, but I haven’t had any complaints.”
Seems as though the tasty food is worth the wait.
“The most rewarding thing is the positive feedback,” he said. “Having people come in and tell you it’s the best tri tip they’ve ever eaten. I love cooking and I love being outdoors. Granted I’m in the trailer, but it’s the same feeling. I’m just so grateful for all the positive support.”
Fasty’s BBQ Joint can be found on Facebook or by visiting their website at www.fastysbbq.com.