The REC adds BBQ joint ready to rock your tastebuds on two fronts

Town & Country Smokehouse, located on the south side of The Rec is serving up Western-style BBQ alongside island-style smoked meats. Pictured above: Jake Freeman with chefs Eric Kama and Jimmy Brundage.

Town & Country Smokehouse opened its doors on April 1 with welcoming arms and smoked foods. The business is owned by Dawn Brundage and her husband, Jimmy Brundage. Jimmy is also one of the cooks.

Part of the reason Jimmy got into the business was because of Dick Withnell, who he described as his mentor. Withnell was a little league baseball coach for Jimmy when he was 12 and brought up the business opportunity to him years later.

“Without him, none of this would have happened,” Jimmy said.

Jimmy owned and operated seven different businesses before but this one is the most special to him because he gets to work with his wife and close friends.

Jimmy and his wife felt proud to be next to The REC which is a faith-based organization as they share thee same values. When opening the restaurant, Jimmy knew he wanted to give back to people in Keizer and felt that The REC offered those opportunities.

“Cooking is such a labor of love for me that I really want to give back to the community and be a part of the community,” Jimmy said.

Eric Kama runs a different part of the kitchen focusing on Hawaiian flavors. Jimmy and Kama have been friends for more than 20 years.  

Kama preps dishes like Kalua pork, Jimmy handles the Western-style BBQ. Kama grew up in Hawaii which is where he learned how to cook authentic Hawaiian food. Jimmy learned his recipes and techniques cooking in Australia.

“I played professional baseball in Australia and I spent a lot of time barbecuing. I developed my passion for cooking there,” Jimmy said.

Town & Country Smokehouse will be showing off a brand new menu in a few weeks which will include multiple options for authentic homemade Hawaiian BBQ and Western smokehouse BBQ.

One of Jimmy’s favorite recipes and a fan favorite of the community which will be on the new menu is his pulled pork sandwich which is slowly smoked for 16 hours. It is then steamed and finished off in the oven.

Jimmy and Kama both look forward to the future of the restaurant and being in the community.

“We just want people to be comfortable and enjoy the company and the food that we are going to offer them here,” Kama said. “We just want to spread the Aloha over here.”