BBQ Joe’s Vietnam Story
Joe Brennan is an American living in Vietnam for over eleven years with his Thai partner (wife) Ms. Au. BBQ Joe’s Vietnam was created because Joe saw a niche market for those foreigners wishing to have a quality, small BBQ in Vietnam, so that they could experience the BBQ flavor they came to love just like back home. Therefore BBQ Joe’s Vietnam was born!
BBQ Joe’s Vietnam is the sole importer of gas BBQ Grill into Vietnam. We have selected the Fuego Living Element Dual Burner Gas BBQ Grill as our core product for the Vietnam market. This is an American-designed grill, packed with the features of a full family grill, but small and compact for an apartment balcony, garden or pool side.
Joe came to Vietnam in 2005 as President of BlueScope Buildings, an Australian company, who owned the US Brand Butler Buildings. Joe had a long career at Butler in the steel structures business and when it was time for Joe to return to the US after his time in Vietnam, the US construction economy in 2008 and 2009 was struggling from the global financial crises and Joe began looking for other growth opportunities in Asia. By then Vietnam was in Joe’s heart and therefore Joe stayed in Vietnam working for other construction industry related roles. Joe is now the Asia Managing Director for CST Industries, Inc., a USA Kansas City company, with Asia Regional Headquarters in Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam.
Joe’s father had a Weber charcoal grill from his earliest memory and Joe learned to BBQ from the time he was a kid. He grew up in Kansas City, the heart of BBQ in America. Joe had his first Weber at 18 when he moved out on his own, and as time progressed, Joe used increasing larger charcoal grills for all kinds of cooking, and Joe became especially adept at indirect cooking and smoking ribs, turkeys, and pulled pork shoulders. Then Joe moved to Vietnam.
Joe tried finding a Weber or (look alike) in Vietnam and eventually settled on a local made open top BBQ, which are prolific and cheap in Vietnam. He eventually had a lid made so Joe’s specialty ribs could be cooked. The issue, however, was that the charcoal quality in Vietnam, while cheap and available, varies greatly in quality and sometimes the result was so very terrible and left the food with a fuel smell. Joe therefore brought his first gas BBQ grill from Kansas City when visiting family, put the luggage tag on the big box, and brought it to Vietnam. As a foreigner living in Vietnam, apartment or villa living is quite common and therefore Joe has cooked on his balcony for years in Vietnam.
Joe entertains often in Vietnam and many have asked him to get them a grill, both Vietnamese and foreigner. Joe has therefore returned from American and brought several other grills for friends. Joe therefore concluded that there is a niche market here and upon looking around and indeed studying the market, we have learned that it’s and lengthy and involved process to import grills into Vietnam, including all of the Vietnam government regulations. Joe’s BBQ Vietnam (aka, JAT Services Trading Company, Limited) has been set up as a Vietnamese company authorized for overseas trading of import BBQ Gas grills into Vietnam.
Joe’s wife from Thailand, Ms. Doungruethai Saiyawan (Ms. Au), is focusing her effort full time on the BBQ import and sales business. She is very intelligent, outgoing, and great with customers. She came from the hotel / hospitality industry in Thailand, studied a year in Sweden, and has called Vietnam “home” for the past five years.
The Recipes pictures are from Joe & Au and please feel free to call either of them as they are happy to share cooking ideas as they want you to be happy with your new BBQ Joe’s Grill!