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home : features : business August 27, 2015

11/14/2012 10:34:00 AM
Community 'lucks out' with new barbeque restaurant
Frank and America Molina with children Paulette, 12, left, and Andrew, 7, front, pose near the smoker where Frank cooks his menu items daily at Lucky’s Barbeque on the east side of Highway 69 near Dewey-Humboldt.
Trib Photo/Sue Tone
Frank and America Molina with children Paulette, 12, left, and Andrew, 7, front, pose near the smoker where Frank cooks his menu items daily at Lucky’s Barbeque on the east side of Highway 69 near Dewey-Humboldt.
Trib Photo/Sue Tone

Sue Tone

Eighteen fractured bones can't keep a good cook down. No one knows that better than Frank Molina, owner and chef of Lucky's Barbeque on Highway 69 and Kachina, near the border of Dewey-Humboldt and Prescott Valley.

A car accident almost four years ago put Molina in the hospital for three weeks and left him unable to return to his job with the fire department or construction work. He wonders if one of the eight blood transfusions at that time included a gene for barbeque, because such culinary talent and appreciation does not run in the family.

"What some would consider to be a tragedy for us was a blessing in disguise," reads the back of Lucky's Barbeque menu.

As he healed from his injuries, Molina started experimenting with grilling and smoking meats in his backyard, then sold his barbeque on the side of the road and at a farmer's market, and eventually opened a restaurant in Colorado. Four winters of cold and snow drove him and his family back to his Arizona roots. He opened Lucky's two months ago.

"I never imagined myself with a restaurant. In rehab, we asked ourselves, 'What do we do now?'" he said.

He and his wife, America, moved from Sierra Vista to the Dewey-Humboldt area while in their early 20s before ending up in Colorado.

They missed their families - both sets of parents live within two hours of them now - and returned to Arizona.

America Molina works the front of the house. Her husband said, "She does everything, she does it all." Andrew, 7, and Paulette, 12, help out after school. Andrew's favorite menu item is the hamburger; Paulette's is the pulled pork sandwich.

Molina cooks everything but the hamburgers in the smoker outside at the front of the building. Nothing goes into the refrigerator, he said.

"It's always fresh, every day," he said.

Word has spread throughout the community about Lucky's in the two months since the restaurant opened.

Jim and Debbie Stanfield of Dewey recently returned to give the burgers a try after having the brisket sandwich on their first visit.

"People told me the burgers were that tall," Jim Stanfield said, spreading his thumb and fingers apart. "And they are. All the people I talk to, they all say they like it here."

In addition to hamburgers and pulled pork, customers can find on the menu ribs, brisket, beef sausage, and chicken. Sides include coleslaw, potato salad, baked beans, applesauce, French and sweet potato fries, onion rings, and fried okra. Whole smoked fresh corn on the cob is available in season.

Hours are Tuesday-Saturday, 11 a.m.-7:30 p.m. Lucky's Barbeque is located at 171 Highway 69, Suite E, (east side of Highway 69 across from Texaco). For more information, call 928-632-0077.

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Reader Comments

Posted: Tuesday, November 20, 2012
Article comment by: sue tone

To By The Way:
I called Lucky's to find out about debit card use, and at the moment, the restaurant does not have the equipment to process debit cards (the little machine to input pin numbers). They do, however, accept Visa, Discover, Master Card and American Express credit cards.

Posted: Thursday, November 15, 2012
Article comment by: David Nystrom, Dewey-Humboldt

What a wonderful BBQ restaurant with great food and friendly, local people running the business. Too bad this place in on the outskirts of Dewey-Humboldt as this is the type of Mom & Pop shop I'd like to see right here in our Town.

Posted: Wednesday, November 14, 2012
Article comment by: A VERY happy customer!

We've been hooked since day 2 they were open! We are soooooo happy to have this wonderful place so close in the Dewey-Humboldt area!

Very nice folks and fantastic food!
Wishing them every possible success here!

I say they need to expand already!

Posted: Wednesday, November 14, 2012
Article comment by: By the way

Do they accept debit cards or is it cash only?

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