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Meet Fred Hopson and Nyesha Hopson of RIBS in Greater Los Angeles Area

Today we’d like to introduce you to Fred Hopson and Nyesha Hopson.

Our story begins with Fred, a Chicago native who has always had a passion for cooking from the age of 12. His mom always ensured he knew his way around the kitchen, and he has not looked back since. In 2013, Fred knew he was on to something. He entered and won 1st place in the “Street Loyalty BBQ Competition” then won 1st place again the following year in 2014. Since then, Fred has studied under the mentors of Pit Masters Kevin Bludso of Bludso’s Bar & Que, Neil Strawder of Big Mista’s Barbeque & Sammich Shop, and several other world-acclaimed pit bosses and has perfected and honed his craft.

News quickly spread of Fred’s award-winning BBQ. A special request to cater to a good friend’s bridal shower changed the course of “HIS”tory. There, he met the hostess; Nyesha, a Los Angeles native. Whether it was love at first sight or love at first bite is still up for debate, but after working together and tasting his food, the deal was sealed.

With over 25 successful years in corporate America, they decided to take their combined Business Management, Legal, Compliance, and Entertainment experience to the streets, to give the people what they want…RIBS. In 2018, they married and launched Ribs with his award-winning Bar-B-Que and her delicious sides. I guess the saying is true… “How it begins is how it ends.” And so, their story goes.

Since, Ribs has taken off, including winning 1st place in the TV show pilot “It’s All Good”, a BBQ competition. As traditional and pop up caterers, RIBS not only feeds our community, but we feed and host a plethora of family, corporate, and celebrity meals, programs, and events.

Great, so let’s dig a little deeper into the story – has it been an easy path overall and if not, what were the challenges you’ve had to overcome?
It has not been a smooth road for us. We are self-taught in this industry. We do not have any formal training in Culinary Arts nor any prior professional experience in food and beverage service operations. Our biggest challenge was learning how to first separate family nomenclature from business relations. We had to dedicate ourselves to incorporate a shared business mindset utilizing our skills in teamwork and time management; while being willing to give and accept constructive criticism to each other in a professional manner. We are constantly learning the ins and outs of the food and services business together. As a family-based team, we research, study and train ourselves to be our best and to excel beyond industry standards. Along the way, we’ve reached out to highly respected professionals in the field for advice and mentoring; then created our own non-traditional business structure to suit the needs of our goal to be a mobile, family-owned and operated business.

RIBS – what should we know? What do you do best? What sets you apart from the competition?
With many years of cooking and customer service experience, we understand how to best serve our customers through tried and true service principles. Instead of following trends, we set them. We create food we’re proud to serve and deliver it with a smile. No matter where you find us, we’re making sure each meal our customers enjoy is a delicious and one-of-a-kind experience, like no other. We are most proud as a company to be family owned and operated. We specialize in authentic pit smoked barbecue and are well known for our cleanliness, friendliness, professionalism, consistency, and deliciously tender wood-smoked meats seasoned in our custom rubs, our delectable southern-inspired barbecue sides and fresh-brewed cold beverages. When it comes to freshness, quality taste and exemplary customer service, we stand alone.

What moment in your career do you look back most fondly on?
We don’t just make bbq, we make people’s day. Ribs was built on the belief that your bbq experience should be unique. Our proudest moment of our career as entrepreneurs is in the food industry is to see how we transcend cultures and bring people together. It seems like EVERYBODY loves great barbecue and good music. We offer both. Our 1st Annual LA Grill Festival had over 30,000 interested followers; needless to say…we had a sold-out event. We have created an outdoor lifestyle and community of love amongst our followers, supporters and fellow pitmasters. We are well known in our community so, even during 2020’s times of turmoil and tribulation, we provide a common way to connect as one, to eat, to vibe, to celebrate and to share life. In as much, we are so thankful to be able to give back by serving free food to those in need on a regular basis+.

Contact Info:

Image Credit:

1) Clyde Gillet 2)Mike Starr 3) A Tailored Situation

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