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Stanley’s Famous Pit Bar-B-Q

By Stefany Ostien
Staff Writer

Walking into Stanley’s on a Thursday night there’s a heavy smell of spices and smoked meat as you step in to join the 26 person long line with some bald middle-aged man in front of you complaining about how long he’s been waiting. Then feeling the intensity of going up to the counter and ordering a “Mother Clucker”. All while feeling the beat of the blues music that’s going on in the next room from local band T.J. Hammersley and Friends.

The majority of people seen here at Tyler Junior College ranges in age from 18 to 22, with the exceptions of a few. Students of these ages are attracted to seeing and experiencing new things. Stanley’s offers all of that and more, like live music every night, and incredible food.


“…It’s an eating establishment with no cover charge to see the live music, Nick [the current owner] brings through the week. Most local folks to come in and play but also good musicians that come in and play,” said T.J. Hammersley, Blues Guitarist of T.J. Hammersley and Friends, local band, Stanley’s regular, “For young kinds or young people in college, I’ll be honest with you, some of the bands that are out there in the college circuit are playing a similar style music of what we play. And that brings a more modern accent to the scene. For a college student there’s great food, great atmosphere, and I think just the option of getting to come and listen to music without having to pay, I assume, would get a lot of attention.”

Stanley’s is a live and happening place to be for any person that enjoys live music and good quality food

“…I can see why students are attracted to it [Stanley’s]… but you’ll get all kind of people that come in. From businessmen, to families, to country people, to even scary-looking people, but everyone is always really positive there,” said Josh Leary, a former employee of Stanley’s Famous Pit Bar-B-Q.

Stanley’s Famous Pit Bar-B-Q had been around for over 50 years in Tyler and in that time has gained a hefty amount of awards. Including their dish the ‘Mother Clucker’ receiving Texas Monthly’s favorite chicken sandwich title in April of 2015, best pork ribs in Texas in September of 2010, ranking in the Texas Monthly list of ‘The Top 50 Barbecue Joints in Texas’ in May of 2013, and many more.

“There’s a lot [awards] it’s kind of hard to remember,” said Nick Pencis, the current owner of Stanley’s Famous Bar-B-Q.

Just a few popular dishes served at Stanley’s include the ‘J.D. Breakfast Bowl’, with scrambled eggs, pan-fried red potatoes, choice of meat & cheddar cheese layered in a bowl is only $3.99. A regular ‘Brother–In-Law’, with grilled hot link, cheese and chopped brisket and sauce, is just $6.99. A regular ‘Ex-wife’, with pulled pork and sliced brisket is only $5.99. The perfect menu for a student on a budget.

Stanley’s Famous Pit Bar-B-Q is always booked with a live performances. To look up what they have going on within the next month you can check out their LIVE MUSIC SCHEDULE at their website stanleysfamous.com. With live music happening six nights a week, award winning food, great prices, and a welcoming environment, Stanley’s Famous Pit Bar-B-Q is the ideal place for college students.

The hours run 7 – 10a.m. Monday-Friday for breakfast. And 11a.m. – 10p.m Monday-Saturday. Stanley’s in located at 525 S. Beckham Ave. Just 1.5 miles from Tyler Junior College.

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