Mike Wilson

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Mike Wilson

Mike Wilson (born c. 1974 in North Carolina, died September 2020) was a chef and restauranteur.

Wilson graduated with a degree in Restaurant and Hospitality management from the University of Alabama in 1996. Wilson then entered the culinary program at Johnson and Wales University in Vail Colorado. He went to Charlotte, North Carolina and worked as a sous chef for Dean and Deluca, and began working at Cooking Light in the test kitchen around 1999. In 2009, after years of smoking meat and crafting sauces as a hobby, he opened Saw's BBQ in Homewood. "Saw's" was an anacronym of Wilson's high school nickname, "Sorry Ass Wilson".

In 2012, Wilson partnered with Doug Smith to open a second location of Saw's, called Saw's Soul Kitchen, headed by chef Brandon Cain, opened in the former Quick & Split Cafe at 215 41st Street South in Avondale. On October 31, Wilson and Smith partnered with Taylor Hicks to open a third location, known as Saw's Juke Joint, in Crestline Park.

In 2014, the Homewood restaurant took the top spot in Cooking with Paula Deen magazine's "The Best Barbecue Across America". That same year Michael Brandon began operating the Saw's Street Kitchen food truck. Brandon later took over the former Fat Sam's Sub Station in Glen Iris, which opened as Saw's Southside in 2017.

In 2019 Saw's BBQ opened a franchising office at 3804 3rd Avenue South in Avondale.

Wilson passed away in September 2020 during the Coronavirus pandemic.