By allowing ads to appear on this site, you support the local businesses who, in turn, support great journalism.
BBQ Cafe coming to Turlock Town Center
bbq cafe
Craig Sinclair holds the plans for Kaitlyn and Ashlee’s Kitchen inside the restaurant’s future home, which is expected to open in the Turlock Town Center in the coming weeks. - photo by ANGELINA MARTIN/The Journal
Name of business: Kaitlyn and Ashlee’s Kitchen

Type of business: BBQ Cafe

Location: 553 N. Golden State Blvd.

Hours: 11 a.m. to 8 p.m. Monday through Saturday, 8 a.m. to 1 p.m. and 4 p.m. to 8 p.m. Sunday

Specialty: All you can eat BBQ

History of business:

Starting a new restaurant from the ground up is a difficult task in itself, but opening one during a pandemic is an entirely different challenge. Still, Turlock resident Craig Sinclair has persevered and plans on opening a new BBQ restaurant called Kaitlyn and Ashlee’s Kitchen in the Turlock Town Center next month.

“With COVID-19, Kaitlyn and Ashlee’s Kitchen has taken a long time to open up,” Sinclair said at the restaurant Tuesday afternoon. There’s still some work to be done on the space, but he hopes to have the restaurant up and running by July 9.

Originally, Sinclair’s plan was to open a BBQ buffet where customers help themselves to a variety of barbecued meats, sides and desserts. The coronavirus pandemic had other plans, however, and now Kaitlyn and Ashlee’s Kitchen employees will serve guests their meals.

“It’s been really, really tough,” Sinclair said of opening a restaurant during the pandemic. “There’s been a lot of re-creation and a lot of going back to the drawing board, but we’ve finally got it set the right way that we want it and looking forward to opening soon.”

Sinclair was first inspired to open his own restaurant two years ago when he and his wife found success serving tri-tip, barbecued chicken, spare ribs and more at the flea market in Modesto, making over $2,200 in just one day. He hopes that eventually Kaitlyn and Ashlee’s Kitchen, which was named after his two daughters, can become a well-known franchise.

“Everyone at the flea market loved it, so that was big for us. We just wanted to go there to see if people liked the way we cooked,” Sinclair said.

In just a couple of weeks, Turlock residents will be able to choose from a vast menu of barbecued meats, including prime rib and lobster tail on the weekends, in addition to a salad and dessert bar. The restaurant will join a variety of other businesses which have recently opened in the Turlock Town Center, including the grocery store Smart and Final.

For Sinclair, the opportunity to operate his first business in a revitalized shopping center is a dream come true.

“We’re finally opening our doors, 18 months in the making,” he said.