“On your 30th birthday, you’ve got some history,” said General Manager Edward Sullivan. The Fulton County resident is a 12-year employee of the Rib Ranch.
Memories are made at the Rib Ranch.
“With the Rib Ranch being 30 years, we get a lot of people coming in who remember being here when they were a child. They remember their parents celebrating a birthday or an anniversary here. There becomes a whole series of family memories that people reflect on, and the Rib Ranch is part of that,” Sullivan said.
Like many of its patrons, Rib Ranch has a tradition in family. The eatery was started by Cindy Newman, who moved from Idaho in February 1983 to Marietta where she set her sights on a broken down hot dog stand. By mid-July, the stand was converted to a barbecue shack and Cindy was open for business.
One-by-one, over the next eight years, Newman’s family joined her in Marietta from Idaho — first, her brother David, then sister Pam, then sister Barbara and finally her parents Bonnie and Tex in 1991.
Over the years there have been changes and some challenges. Pam married and opened a new barbecue restaurant. Cindy Newman sold the restaurant and catering operation to David and Barbara. And parents Bonnie and Tex retired.
“Because (Rib Ranch) is owned by David and Barbara, a brother-and-sister team, there’s a sense of family that trickles down to the employees and that goes out to the customers. There’s a general sense of family that doesn’t just stop in the office,” Sullivan said.
Perhaps Rib Ranch’s biggest challenge was in 1995 when the restaurant and catering kitchen were struck by lightning that burned the building completely. It took a year-and-a-half to rebuild and reopen, but the Rib Ranch proved to be a mainstay in the community.
Today the Rib Ranch is still known for its award-winning Texas-style barbecue that includes beef brisket and tomato-based sauce. First time guests should try Rib Ranch’s succulent beef and pork ribs.
“The beef ribs are unique in size and flavor. The beef ribs are usually an experience that people have not seen elsewhere. There’s about a pound of meat on each bone. A lot of people call them dino-ribs,” Sullivan said. “People should try the pork ribs simply because they’re really good.”
Using the freshest and best quality ingredients for 30 years, Rib Ranch maintains the traditional flare of barbecue but also offers different experiences.
“Our baked beans are a good example of having the traditional baked bean flavor but instead of using the pinto bean we use the Great Northern Bean. We think it captures a little more of the flavor. Each of our dishes is thought that way,” Sullivan said.
The restaurant is at 2063 Canton Road, Marietta.
Visit the Rib Ranch for breakfast, lunch or dinner. For hours of operation and more information including catering, visit theribranch.com or call (770) 422-5755.