We want to take this opportunity to introduce ourselves. We're Bill and Lana, owners of Wee Willy's.
We started Wee Willy's in 2002 after winning the Super Bowl of Barbecue, the prestigious Jack Daniel's World Championship Barbecue, held in Lynchburg, Tennessee.
We make Wee Willy's in small batches, the old fashion way. Doing so ensures that each batch has time to develop its signature, homemade taste, just like mom.
Wee Willy's is very much a family business; there are just the three of us, Bill, Lana and Lil Willy. When we started Wee Willy's, we shared the firm belief that we would need to build a strong foundation to succeed. Over time the Twin Cities and their suburbs have become that foundation as we have steadily worked our way outward. By doing it slowly and paying attention to details, we have built strong relationships with our loyal customers, relationships we cherish. We're proud to continue our growth, just as we have since day one, putting quality and customers first, just as we would expect and would want to be treated.
We appreciate the time you've taken today to stop by to learn a little more about Wee Willy's and what makes us so different. We can assure you that you won't be disappointed.
Nationally Recognized and World Champion
Wee Willy's started as a KCBS competition barbecue team in 2002. During their rookie barbecue season, they had their share of success. In October of 2002, they won The Jack Daniel's World Championship Invitational Barbecue. Their success didn't stop there, and their accolades continued over the years. One such highlight was an appearance on a Food Network BBQ special. Another was when Bon Appétit Magazine recognized Wee Willy's BBQ Sauce as a top-five pick in the country.
It's not easy when you take your hobby and turn it into how you make a living. We are not complaining but instead blessed without opportunity ahead of us. Wee Willy's took its First Step into the food business in late December 2002.
Making Tough Decisions
It wasn't easy to compete and promote our new business. We elected to spend our summers developing a following for our new line of barbecue sauces. Before doing so, they have kept current in the world of barbecue in many ways. They continue to cook competitively when the opportunity is right. They went on to win the prestigious Butt to Butt invitational. In 2003, we partnered with Memphis in May barbecue legion and BBQ hall Fame inductee, John Willingham. They were cooking with John at the 2003 Memphis and May BBQ Festival.
Learning From The BBQ Legends
The void they had from not competing was undeniably there. When time permits, they would travel. As you might have figured out, it revolved around BBQ. They were traveling and visiting the legendary barbecue joints across the country. These opportunities gave them a chance to reconnect and stay connected to their roots in BBQ. They were once again learning from the BBQ legends.
Coming out of Retirement
When Sam's Club's tournament came along, once again, they came out of retirement—with a respectable finish, advancing to the second round. There additional times throughout the years that Bill and Lana would string together a series of contests. Each time by the end of their run, they were back on the stage.
A Chance of a Life Time; Cooking Against 24 of Worlds Best BBQ Teams, Ever.
The Jack's 25th Anniversary Winner Circle barbecue contest was their last big contest. They couldn't have been more satisfied with our level of performance and our finish.
Judging THE JACK, Not So Easy
The third weekend in October, you are likely to find Bill and Lana in the hallow of Lynchburg, Tennessee.
Ever since winning the Jack back in 2003, Bill and Lana have been honored to judge the world's best bbq at The Jack.
Minnesota Style Barbecue™
Their barbecue-style has evolved over the years. We're proud of what our BBQ has evolved into, Minnesota Style Barbeque™. It's our interpretation of BBQ. It's old school bbq, cooked low and slow with a touch of current BBQ. It's not sweet. We can assure you it has no resemblance to pot roast or pork medallions. They leave those to the competition BBQ trends!
Dreams Come True.
Bill and Lana are the ultimate teams. Bill's the dreamer and idea guy. Lana's the dream-maker, and yes, she also writes the checks. Please don't fool yourself, she knows barbecue, and she knows what it takes to win. It was her cool head that won them the Jack despite Bill's best efforts to screw it up, ask him. For the past 19 years since winning the Jack, Bill and Lana have worked side by side, and we mean that literally. Thanks to The Jack for making dreams come true.
Time Doesn't Stand Still.
It's hard to believe it has been 19 years since Bill and Lana started Wee Willy's. Their business has grown from their award-winning sauce to include 30 plus food items. They sell them in Minnesota grocery stores. And as of late, branching out to neighboring states of Wisconsin, North, and South Dakota.
The "secret" they came away with is barbeque is not a cooking method or type of food, but a way of life. It's America's food, something shared with friends and family and never hurried.
Even with their success, there is still a drive to succeed, compete, and continue to develop their ideas. There's no doubt that Bill & Lana have done their homework & have beaten the odds. What they're most proud of is that they did it their way, without compromise, without exception. Jack Makes Dreams Come True