New Lake Placid barbecue restaurant approved

LAKE PLACID — Plans for a new grab-and-go barbecue restaurant have been approved by the Lake Placid-North Elba Review Board, and owners expect to fire up their grills and open up for business on July 1.

Jonathan and Meghan Gravatt appeared before the Lake Placid-North Elba Review Board in February to begin the review process for West Shore BBQ, a takeaway barbecue joint that would operate seasonally and for major events, like the 2023 Winter World University Games. The Gravatts have already leased the former Speedy Spa building off of Saranac Avenue for the restaurant. The review board approved West Shore at its regularly scheduled meeting on March 2.

The Gravatts have been working toward creating West Shore for years. Jonathan said they found two Texas smokers for the restaurant years ago, and it took three years for the company to make them due to pandemic-related supply shortages. The Gravatts also started buying wood for the smokers three years ago, and they’ve upped their hardwood inventory with each passing year. Jonathan said their food would be barbecued with wood, and that their two smokers are “beautiful pieces of art.”

West Shore’s menu will be “Whole Foods meets barbecue,” Jonathan said, combining a Memphis-Texas-Florida style of barbecue with fresh foods. The meat and sides menu options would feature local vegetables in West Shore’s cole slaw, smoked cauliflower and potatoes alongside barbecue staples like brisket and ribs. Jonathan said the menu would have a “huge” vegetarian component.

Now that the restaurant has been approved, Meghan said she and Jonathan are going through the “nitty-gritty” of getting building permits to start the construction process.

“We are all ready to go and (we’re) moving forward,” she said.

Meghan said they couldn’t believe how fast the approval process went. They’re excited to get started on the restaurant, she said, noting that she’s honored to revive a historic building.

Meghan said the former Speedy Spa building used to be home to a tourist attraction called “1000 Animals,” which used to show wild animals like bears, monkeys and llamas.

“It’s a very historic piece of property,” she said, “and I’m looking forward to preserving it and still using it as something instead of just saying, ‘It’s an old building,’ and tearing it down.”


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