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Dining with Nancy at Lutz’s

Growing up in a small town of 1200, I wasn’t accustomed to too many amenities. Gower, like most small towns, hosted a grocery store, a NAPA store, the garage where town elders gathered each day, a car wash that doubled as a high school fight ring, and of course, the gas station. The gas station is the center of small town activity. Locals frequent it each morning for coffee, athletes hit it for pre-game Gatorade needs, and high school students gather there to plan nightly activities. Though, my fondness of gas stations has waned, as I’ve inhabited larger communities. The role is completely different…except for one, the one in Jefferson City that houses Lutz’s Famous BBQ. photo-4

Lutz’s needs no introduction to JC locals but did for my friend Jay. Jay has delighted in Lutz’s fare at catered events but had not journeyed to the gas station to enjoy the smoking scent, the revolving door of patrons entering and exiting, and the red and white table cloths. I love it. I love everything about it – camaraderie shared at each table, which reminds me of my local gas station, and any dress code is welcomed (I prefer to go post training sessions). Jay clearly is a good friend as I invited him to join me for lunch at Lutz’s after my workout, a state and sight I prefer to hide from most I know. We settled into a small table by the window and began our feast of pulled pork sandwiches, Lutz’s Zesty House chips, cole slaw and mac-n-cheese. It was the perfect way to kick off a week – delicious food and great company!

The Place

Lutz’s Famous BBQ is located at 3505 Missouri Boulevard in Jefferson City and recently opened a branch in Columbia off Nifong. Lutz’s is a family owned and operated business with dine in, carry out or catering options. Typically, I’m funky about carry out or catering. It never seems as good as dining in house. Lutz’s, however, defies the time delay and the food is delicious whichever way you choose.

The People

Its odd. Service usually is my thing. I like to build relationships with servers and the restaurants in which they work. I haven’t at Lutz’s because I’m typically carrying out my favorite pulled pork basket and the line behind me is ever-present. Though, as little as I know the Lutz’s staff, they always are patient with customers, helpful, quick to serve, and seem to enjoy their work and their products.

Nancy Giddens
Nancy Giddens

The Product 

“It’s hot. It’s smokin’ delicious. It’s Lutz’s.” That’s Lutz’s motto and they’re right on all accounts. Jay and I thoroughly enjoyed our pulled pork sandwiches and sides, even if Jay nearly destroyed his due to his salt addiction. You cannot go wrong here. Whether you order the daily special, your standard (like me), or even their salad, everything is delicious. As a perfectionist, I like that I can’t make a wrong decision.

The Price

Baskets, sandwiches, sides, dinners, family specials, and meat by the pound can be ordered at varying prices. Plan to spend around $10 per person for a complete meal and $5 per child…and it is worth every penny. For a complete overview of Lutz’s products and prices, check out

The Pizzazz

Introducing Jay to the glory of gas station dining. While I won’t run into my brother-in-law getting coffee, meet a former classmate’s children, or get the rundown of local gossip, my favorite JC gas station has something Gower cannot provide – Lutz’s BBQ. It is delicious and is one of my favorite eateries in town. How can one not love a gas station with a product so fantastic? Now, if only Lutz’s would consider a Gower location…