About Speed Queen BBQ

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In the summer 1956, from the back of a storefront in the old hay market on 5th & Vliet, Betty Gillespie and Leonard Partee took the family recipe for BBQ and secret sauce and set up shop right next to Milwaukee’s undisputed champion of BBQ, “Black King”.

In the beginning, we survived on the overflow from Black King. Word of our excellent BBQ, Secret Sauce, and speedier service quickly spread and our founder, Betty Gillespie, was dubbed the Speed Queen. Soon we had all the business we could handle and Black King was moving away.

From the hay market we moved to 12th & Vine and in 1975 we settled on the corner of 12th & Walnut where today we’re proudly producing Milwaukee’s finest barbecued meats using the largest BBQ pit in the city and our trademarked secret sauces.

Enjoy and God bless.


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