Local Experiences

The shed

1/18/2015 | Elaine Stevens

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Come see the Food Network’s ShedHeds!
Created from junk, genius and generations of entrepreneurship, The Shed in Ocean
Springs was born about 13 years ago. You could say there’s only one place like it in the world,
but that would be lying. You see, there is a Sister Shed in Gulfport that the family "birthed” six
years ago that is becoming just as famous for its older sibling for its barbecue and blues.
"The Shed is family,” says Linda Orrison, the marketing wizard behind the restaurant.
"At the dinner table, it’s almost like we have an extra chair for The Shed, because that’s what we
always talk about.”
Linda, better known as MamaShed, (no typo, all one word!) or simply Mama, is quick to
correct when one refers to the internationally acclaimed barbeque haven as a restaurant.
"It is a destination,” she says. "I like to tell people you can take your date to a classy place or
just bring them to The Shed!”
Brimming with funk and family, The Shed’s global success comes from a whole lotta’ love.
The eclectic décor is a testament to that. License tags from all 50 United States and a smattering
of international tags, plus hundreds of signed dollar bills line the ceilings, along with a motley collection of "stuff,” are each representative of a ShedHed — passionate contributors and followers of food, fun and music at The Shed.
"We even had a mother take off her baby’s shoes and give them to us to hang on the wall after she ate her barbeque,” says Orrison with a laugh. "I tell people whenever you want it back you can have it, because the Shed belongs to the comunity.”
With more than 275 fundraisers, most held to benefit the regional area of the Gulf Coast, The Shed has helped provide disaster relief for thousands, including the victims of Hurricane Sandy. The cast of characters, featured on several Food Network shows, is just as colorful and lively as the décor and cuisine: Head ShedHed (Brad Orrison), Sista’ (Brooke Lewis, sometimes
called Porkchop), Entertainment Expert (Brett) and Daddy-O (Craig, the master of Saucery), assisted by close family friend and colleague Rene Patout. Definitely a family affair! By April of this year, The Shed Family says their "junkfree” barbecue sauce will be in more than 4,000 stores internationally, including Canada, Mexico and Germany. What is "junk free,” you may ask? Healthconscious Brooke is quick to answer. "Unlike most barbecue sauces, The Shed’s sauce has no high-fructose corn syrup and is gluten free — all natural. That’s why we are in many health-food stores. We are really proud to have a clean label.” Perfecting the sauce was a grueling labor of love over the years. Together with brother Brad, Brooke helped to reformulate the original Shed recipe for a more health-aware demographic, and the siblings learned from scratch the art of low, slow barbecue cooking. Linda says she is constantly researching sources for organically grown and humanely raised quality meat products. That’s why the Shed is a  winner in numerous cooking and favorite-venues competitions with a network of Facebook fans exceeding 36,000! There are too many "best of ” awards and honors to mention, but here are a few:
• 2013 reigning World Champion Whole
Hog cookers at Memphis in May International
World Championship.
• Ultimate Hometown Grill-Off Champion
on "Live! Regis & Kelly,” winning two-page
spread in Better Homes and Gardens
• 70+ Awards of Excellence Sauce Awards —
National BBQ Association 2010, 2011, 2012.
• 2013 Best BBQ Restaurant in Mississippi,
Mississippi Magazine
• 2013 Best Bar in the State of Mississippi,
And to top these off, The Shed Family
Orrisons are the darlings of media around
the world, including French and Canadian
publications, Food Network’s "Diners Drive-ins
and Dives,” "Bama Que” and "Best in Smoke,”
The Travel Channel’s "Man vs Food,” MPB’s
"Mississippi Roads” and others. They even got a
shout-out on the David Letterman Show. Often
described as the state’s hospitality ambassadors,
The Shed is also the first restaurant — uh,
destination — in South Mississippi to have its
own reality show.
"Every single time we win an award, we
bring it home to the Mississippi Gulf Coast,”
Brooke says proudly. MamaShed closes by
adding, "We call it ‘bringing home the bacon.’
We love our Mississippi Gulf Coast!”
7501 Mississippi 57
Ocean Springs, MS 39565
Sunday-Thursday, 11 a.m.-9 p.m.
Friday-Saturday, 11 a.m.-10 p.m.
15094 Mills Road
Gulfport, MS 39503
Tuesday-Thursday and Sunday, 11 a.m.-9 p.m.
Friday-Saturday, 11 a.m.-10 p.m.

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Elaine Stevens