Providing Service for over 35 Years
Bully's Restaurant on Livingston Road lies along the main rail line headed north out of Jackson and running all the way to Chicago. Their neighborhood, just south of Lake Hico and the Entergy Rex Brown Generating Plant, is a former industrial area that has grown and maintained a residential flavor. The local folks know that you don't have to be in a hurry to take your lunch break, because good food will be ready and waiting. People from all over town are making sure they get to Bully's. The parking lot will be full everyday during business hours, so you know this a great place to eat. The friendly staff will get you seated and set up to taste authentic soul food.
Soul Food Traditions
Anyone familiar with Bully's Restaurant nationwide knows that the menu will be loaded with authentic Soul Food and slow-cooked smoked meats, fresh vegetables and home-made recipes. Beef and Pork BBQ Ribs, Beef Tips with Rice, Smothered or Fried Pork Chops, Ham Hocks, Smothered Oxtails, and Southern Fried Catfish and Chitterlings are menu standard fare paired with Fried Corn Fresh Greens, Black-Eyed Peas, Fried Okra and Okra & Tomato Stew.
Bully's Restaurant opened for business 1986. The original owner is still in the kitchen cooking and tending a custom-made smoker.
Tyrone says that as he was growing up, he worked with his father, an accomplished brick mason. They would save the few bricks left over from each job and gradually accumulated enough to build the restaurant. Begun in 1981, Bully's Restaurant structure was completed in 1982 and including brick flooring; equipment was installed and the facility prepared for the public. The restaurant seats 40 people or so in close quarters, like family and friends do when they get together. The Bully Family had owned and operated a small grocery store nearby, that sustained them in years past, along with Mr. Bully Sr. career in construction. "It was always our dream to build this place and cook for people. My Daddy didn't know how to cook, but he knew how it should taste, so he told me and I got it!"
Tyrone Bully uses a combination of smoke and heat to produce his signature flavor. His custom smoker was built by a locally famous master fabricator & welder, Henry Lawson. The grill area is square, with expanded metal racks over a charcoal bed. The lid is thick and heavy, able to hold in the heat and uses a weight & pulley to provide balance for opening and closing. The smoke box is attached to the back, with a generous-size hatch to feed the hickory and cherry woods Tyrone uses to achieve a balanced and succulent taste. He smokes meats over-night to achieve a thorough color and tenderness in the meat. Bully's serves their BBQ Ribs wet, so if you want the sauce on the side, you have to ask. :)
Bully's Restaurant has gained media coverage around the country, including Southern Living, Oct. 2015 in a special section titled "The South's Best Soul Food." It was cool to participate in the ritual, when during a visit, one of the staff reaches for the box that holds the magazines. Out comes another one, Cooking with Paula, March/April 2015 with page 73 folded just enough to find the article "Mississippi Homemade" that describes Bully's Restaurant.
Bully's Restaurant has the distinction of being recognized with the 2016 James Beard Award. An article published in "eat. drink. Mississippi." Magazine recounts that on February 23, 2016 "The James Beard Foundation announced ... five recipients of its 2016 America’s Classics Award. The America’s Classics Award is given to restaurants that have timeless appeal and are cherished for quality food that reflects the character of their community." The 2016 James Beard Awards, hosted by Carla Hall, will be held at Lyric Opera of Chicago on Monday, May 2.
Take time to visit Bully's Restaurant, get to know Jackson the right way and be sure to tell Tyrone Bully himself that you heard about them on the Mississippi BBQ Trail.