Golden Rule Bar-B-Q
Golden Rule Bar-B-Q is a Birmingham-based barbeque chain founded in 1891 in what is now Irondale. The chain is best known for its sauce and pulled pork sandwiches. Its corporate offices are located at 15 Office Park Circle in Mountain Brook's Office Park.
The Golden Rule began in 1891 as a stop for travelers headed toward Atlanta from Birmingham, but also appealed to local residents and became one of the area's well-known gathering places.
By the late 1930s, Jabo and Ellene Williams Stone took over the restaurant, which was still in her family. It was at this time a new building was constructed along the Atlanta Highway where the business would remain through the 1950s. Jabo would construct what would be the restaurant's third location just off U.S. Highway 78 in Irondale before selling the business to Michael Matsos in 1969 for a percentage of sales over 20 years. Matsos constructed a fourth location at the present site of the Irondale location off Interstate 20 in the early 1970s.
By 1973, as part of his agreement with Stone, Matsos opened a second Golden Rule location on what was originally called the "Florida Highway" in Hoover. In 1976 Matsos sold this location to Nick Manakides, who would become the first Golden Rule franchisee. Manakides continued as a franchisee until 2020 when he rebranded his restaurant as Archie's Bar-B-Q & Burgers.
Another franchisee, Rusty Creel, partnered with Sneaky Pete's Café operators Bob and Mark Lovell to open a Golden Rule on the prominent corner of 29th Street South and Clairmont Avenue in Lakeview in 2006. That location closed in 2010.
Brian Kemp, who had partnered with Golden Rule to share a location at 120 South Chalkville Road in Trusville in 2022, bought the brand from Matsos in 2023.
- 5600 Messer Airport Highway, Birmingham (Birmingham-Shuttlesworth International Airport)
- 1901 6th Avenue North, Birmingham (Regions Plaza)
- 210 Doug Baker Boulevard, Hoover
- 2506 Crestwood Boulevard, Irondale
- 1700 Martin Street North, Pell City
- 120 South Chalkville Road, Trussville (owned by Charles Matsos and Pete Derzis), closed August 2022, reopened December 2022 with Kemp's Kitchen & Bakery under same roof
- 5060 Academy Lane, Bessemer (2006–2009)
- 740 Brookwood Village, suite 238, Homewood
- 3340 Galleria Circle, Hoover (closed 2009)
- 744 29th Street South, Lakeview Birmingham (2006–November 2010)
- 4979 U.S. Highway 31, Calera (closed December 14, 2012)
- 4437 Pinson Valley Parkway, Center Point (closed 2012)
- 1571 Montgomery Highway, Hoover (Nick Manakides 1974–2020)
- 151 Industrial Road, Alabaster (2019–2020, owned by Paul Curcio)
- 4290 Highway 52, Helena (closed February 2022, owned by Paul Curcio)
- 3100 Pelham Parkway, Pelham (closed February 2022, owned by Paul Curcio)
- Wilkinson, Kaija (February 5, 2006) "2 restaurants debuting in Lakeview." Birmingham Business Journal
- Golden Rule Bar-B-Q History at goldenrulebbq.com - accessed 06 September 2006
- Diel, Stan (March 10, 2011) "Baha Burger may come to Lakeview." The Birmingham News
- Taylor, Drew (November 19, 2020) "Golden Rule Bar-B-Q in Hoover changes name, leaves franchise for first time since 1974" CBS42.com
- Love, Michelle (January 29, 2022) "Pelham, Helena locations of Golden Rule BBQ close permanently." Shelby County Reporter
- Rebman, Stephanie (August 16, 2022) "Golden Rule Barbecue closes Trussville location." Birmingham Business Journal
- O'Leary, A. J. (September 29, 2022) "Golden Rule, Kemp's Kitchen to team up for shared Trussville location." Birmingham Business Journal
- Rebman, Stephanie (March 29, 2023) "Kemp's Kitchen owner acquires Golden Rule BBQ brand." Birmingham Business Journal
- Thornton, William (April 4, 2023) "What is Alabama’s oldest restaurant -- Bright Star or Golden Rule?" AL.com
- Golden Rule Bar-B-Q official website