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17th Street BBQ in O'Fallon Will Close Nov. 30, Others to Remain Open

17stbbqclosed.jpg
Ian Froeb

Acclaimed barbecue restaurant 17th Street BBQ (1711 West Highway 50; 618-622-1717) will close its O'Fallon, Illinois, location at the end of the month, co-owner Mike Mills tells us. The other two locations, in Murphysboro and Marion, Illinois, will remain open as well as the catering business.

See also: The 7 Best Barbecue Joints in St. Louis

"It's a very sad moment for me," Mills says. "I really hate that this has to happen. It's not a pretty thing."

Mills is a three-time Memphis in May World Championship Barbecue Cooking Contest (a.k.a. the Super Bowl of Swine) winner, and also opened Memphis Championship Barbecue in Las Vegas. Basically, he knows barbecue.

Mills says there has been a decline in business, and he and his business partner, daughter Amy Mills, decided the best thing to do would be to consolidate. O'Fallon was the third location for 17th Street BBQ, and the only one not actually located on a Seventeenth Street.

"It only makes sense that [O'Fallon] was not as profitable as the other two locations. It's just the decline of the business," Mill says. "We've had good business, but it's just not enough to sustain the operation that we want."

Customers can expect business as usual up until November 30, its last day, and everyone will still get the Thanksgiving turkeys they ordered. About 50 employees will be out of a job, though some are moving to the other two locations. Mills says they are helping the remaining employees find a job anywhere they can.

"I appreciate all the support that we've received over a period of years. This is probably one of the hardest things I've ever done in my life, to close this location," Mill says. "It's in Southern Illinois, and my heart is in Southern Illinois. It's been great to work with everybody up there."

Gut Check is always hungry for tips and feedback. Email the author at nancy.stiles@riverfronttimes.com or follow her on Twitter.




Location Info

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17th Street Bar & Grill-O'Fallon - CLOSED

1711 W. Highway 50, O'Fallon, IL

Category: Restaurant

My Voice Nation Help
9 comments
Jason Savoy
Jason Savoy

I'm a BBQ fan and consider this good news.

Ronda Evansco-Brooks
Ronda Evansco-Brooks

We have one here in Marion and when I drove passed it, my sister in law said that they microwave the ribs and the sauce...She poked my bubble :( It smelled soooo good! I'll never go there now.

Marti Routh
Marti Routh

Going to miss their bbq and nachos! Oh and their fried okra. Really am going to miss this place!!!

Stacey Barbeau
Stacey Barbeau

will miss the staff love the sausage and pimento cheese

Meredith Mendola
Meredith Mendola

17th street is amazing. Can't find even remotely comparable BBQ in the area.

rupert05xlh
rupert05xlh topcommenter

The O'Fallon location wasn't nearly as good as the original in Murphysboro.

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