Interior of Pappy's Texas BBQ in Antigua, Guatemala

Texas-Style BBQ Succeeds in Antigua, Guatemala, Thanks to UT Austin Alumnus

  • Feb 8, 2022

Blake Thurgood didn’t intend to become a pitmaster, but a series of life decisions set him on a path to bring Texas barbecue to Antigua, Guatemala.  

After graduating from The University of Texas at Austin, the Texas native set off to travel the world, but Antigua captured his heart and kept him there for two years. He fell in love with a local who would become his wife—and the catalyst for his new career. 

“I brought my wife up to visit [Austin],” Thurgood says, “and she fell in love with Texas barbecue. She said that her great-great grandfather’s house in Antigua was the perfect place to open a restaurant.” 

Despite having no previous barbecue experience, Thurgood spent time apprenticing with some of Austin’s best pitmasters, then opened Pappy’s BBQ in 2012.  

To see if Pappy's lives up to its claim of being the “best BBQ outside of Texas,” read the article in the Houston Chronicle.