Australia's Original American BBQ Company


A bit about how we got here


Ranch Hand was founded in Australia in 2009 for one distinct purpose.   I'd like to say it was all about this grand vision to bring my native Southern US cuisine and my passion for all things BBQ to my new home in Australia.   

But that would be bullshit :D ... and we don't do BS here.   

In all honesty, it was to stop me whinging about missing spare ribs and brisket and my Mom's fried chicken.   15 years in, I  still find tons of new things to love about my adopted home but you still need the stuff you grew up with too.

And in 2009, truth be told, I wasn't having a lot of luck finding a good rub!  Or really, even finding someone who knew what rubs were.   I might have even settled for one of those crap mass-produced rub full of cheap salt and sugar (but no one was importing those either... yet).    BBQ shops mostly sold shiny gassers, butchers usually chucked whatever brisket they had into the grinder and rubs were another name for a massage.    

So we did what everyone does in a pinch and made our own, like we did at home.     Dad had started teaching me this stuff as a kid back in Missouri, on an offset stick burner.   It was an old steel barrel he'd he split in two, with deck chair pieces for legs.  Mom always did the sauces (smoky St. Louis style in our area). Beef and pork courtesy of uncle's and cousin's farms. 

By the 80s I'd been off working professionally on the pits in Texas as well as learning lots of new techniques cooking in Mexican restaurants.  So other than a few special chillis sent from family back home, we were all set.   

Plus, it turned out Australia had a gorgeous agricultural scene for both meat and a lot of the rub ingredients - and bonus - some sneaky little native herbs no US rub company would have ever heard of...   Niiiice!     

With some help from the family, we dragged the rubs out to farmer's markets packed with some of the ugliest homemade labels ever seen.  

But people forgave us. :D


A bit about what's happening now


Nowadays, we've chosen the name "Bulldozer" for the range of rubs and bbq sauces and they're shipped all over Australia.   Fits in with all you tradies we talk to over the bbq all the time.    But it's still us, still putting 50+ years of barbecue experience to good use.

And 'The Ranch Hand' is evolving in all kinds of new ways.   

We've grown from that home kitchen business to having a factory (ok, more like a hangout than anything).  A place where anyone can come grab a stool at the front counter and have a chinwag, ask for and give advice and not have to walk out with the deed to a new pellet smoker.   

  • There's an American (and Mexican) cooking school in the works. Inside where it's heated and airconditioned.  We can all take advantage of our commercial kitchen.  That means you too.  Hopefully, we'll be putting some "master" back in "masterclass".
  • Expect to find us catering some lunches and popups here and there too (more on that later).
  • And our sunny front corner room has become what we call a BBQ milk bar.   Grab some charcoal or pellets and real Oran butcher paper,  try one of our new hot sauces, network a little while you're at it.   But we're not a big box store.   As we expand inventory, we're going to focus on best of class (in our experience) and that's it.    Australian and American, side by side.   Like us.      

So you know... you're always welcome around our joint.    Right at the corner of London Drive and Amisted Road,  Baywater VIC.   Can't miss it.   The place smells great.


Cheers, Cliff