Born in New York City and raised in Ohio, New Hampshire and Virginia, Chef Andrew Evans developed a passion for food and travel at an early age. As a child, he accompanied his mother and brother on excursions to Amsterdam, France, Spain, Lebanon, and Morocco. Taught from childhood to be curious about the world and about food, Evans received a BA degree in Far Eastern Religious Studies (Zen Buddhism) from the University of Virginia and later attended the Culinary Institute of America (CIA) in New York.
After graduating from the CIA with honors in 1993, Evans pursued his dream of cooking and traveling. He was sponsored to work as a line cook and chef de cuisine in Australia and worked his way through top Australian resturants for 8 years. While down under, Evans indulged his passion for travel by making Asian forays to such neighboring countries as Thailand, Japan, China, Vietnam and Hong Kong, where he explored their local food stalls and markets, eating extensively to develop his palate and taste memory. At the end of seven years, Evans felt he had come to fully understand Australia’s food culture.
Because Evans had always yearned to own and manage his own small inn and fine dining restaurant, he settled in the historic town of Easton, Maryland, on the Eastern Shore in 1999. There he purchased and fully renovated an historic 1790 mansion in the heart of downtown Easton. He transformed it into a contemporary boutique hotel with four suites, three guest rooms and a 45-seat fine dining restaurant serving contemporary Austrailian cuisine. After 8 successful years, he made a life changing decision to open a resturant featuring his beloved hobby, BBQ. The BBQ Joint was born and has since grown to four busy locations in Easton, MD, Pasadena, MD, Union Market, DC and 14th Street, DC. Evans claims,”BBQ is the most challenging cooking I have ever done. The variables are infinate, the pursuite for perfection endless.” He conitunes, “It’s a life long journey of discovery, humility and passion trying to perfect the same meat items over and over again. It has a very Zen like quality.”
Andrew Evans currently balances his time managing his four BBQ Joint locations, enjoying recently remarried to his partner in crime, caring for his two daughters and participating in special events whether charity or otherwise to spread his passion for BBQ.
Although Chef Andrew Evans began as a fine dining chef, one experience as a celebrity guest judge at the Jack Daniels World Championship Barbecue Competition in 2004 stoked his enduring love of barbecue. Soon after, he started his barbecue team, Walk the Swine, and began competing on the national barbecue circuit. A shelf full of barbecue competition trophies later, he was recognized by Food and Wine magazine as one of the “Best New BBQ: Pit Masters and Grill Geniuses” in 2012. His barbecue prowess has also been featured on the front page of the food sections in the Washington Post in 2012 and the Baltimore Sun in 2014. He was recently invited to contribute his recipe for Bourbon-glazed chicken wings for Southern Living’s Bourbon & Bacon guide to the South’s favorite food groups.
Earlier in his career, Chef Andrew’s culinary vision earned The Inn at Easton recognition from Food & Wine magazine, where the restaurant made the top 50 hotel restaurants list in both 2002 and 2003. The Inn’s restaurant also received an excellent review from The Washington Post’s food critic Tom Sietsema and was named in the newspaper’s annual “Dining Guide” in 2003/2004/2005/2006/2007 with three stars and selected as an “editor’s pick.” Sietsema also nominated Chef Andrew Evans for the James Beard “Best Mid-Atlantic Chef” for 2004. Chef Andrew won the Mid-Atlantic Pork competition in 2003 and the Mid-Atlantic crab cake competition in 2007.
National Geographic Traveler Magazine featured the Inn in their “101 great food and travel experiences issue” and it has been featured in Southern Living and Travel & Leisure magazines, among others. In February 2004, the editors of Southern Living selected the Inn at Easton as one of their 10 favorite romantic restaurants in America. The Washingtonian included the Inn in their 2006 top 100 list of restaurants for DC, Maryland and Virginia. In 2007, the Washingtonian ranked The Inn at Easton 16th out of the 100 of the best restaurants in DC, Maryland and Virginia. Evans was also featured on the cover of the Washingtonian for the 2007 issue of rising star chefs. His most celebrated review came from the late Johnny Apple, who featured the Inn’s restaurant in a full length article on the front page of the New York Times food section.