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May 26, 2024

Where Every Family Matters

Pitmaster Pat Martin to Host New Series ‘Life of Fire’

The owner of Martin’s Bar-B-Que Joint in Nashville will host a new series on Outdoor Channel premiering May 6.

“Life of Fire” a new series hosted by Nashville pitmaster Pat Martin, premieres on Outdoor Channel on Monday, May 6, at 8 p.m.

Over the course of 10 weekly episodes, Martin will feature the arduous, old methods of barbecue and live fire cooking, with each having its own unique style and story to tell. Martin purposefully steers the viewer away from the modern sense of barbecue we often see today, embedding himself with pitmasters as they share their own cooking heritage and traditions.

One of the only three pitmasters left practicing the art of West Tennessee-style whole hog barbecue, Martin will showcase different techniques and practices from across the country. Viewers can expect to learn about old-school cooking methods from across the state of Tennessee to Alabama, Georgia, Virginia and all the way out to California. There are even some stops to learn about international traditions from places like Greece and Laos along the way.

“I’ve been dreaming about finding a way to showcase our country and its roots in barbecue and live fire cooking for years,” says Martin. “Technology has sped our daily lives up in almost every aspect possible. Cooking over fire and coals is not immune to it either, with so many folks using electricity or gas assisted smokers or grills to take the work and the romance out of the process. Because of this, we run the risk of losing those time-honored methods and techniques, and more importantly the individual family and community stories associated with them that make America identify so strongly with barbecue and live fire cooking.”

You’ll find Martin burning wood down to coals to cook, using above- and in-ground pits, as well as utilizing forgotten cuts of meat and preparing the foods most people eat every day in unexpected ways.

“I’m passionate about exploring those pieces of history, learning about others’ cultural heritage, and making sure the old ways don’t die,” he explains. “My hope is that viewers will learn something new and follow along with all of the fun, because we had a blast traveling cross-country to meet up with some of my favorite people in the business of food.”

Martin’s first restaurant concept and namesake, Martin’s Bar-B-Que Joint, is rooted in a lifelong love for the art of pit-cooked barbecue and live fire cooking. What began as a 950-square foot joint in Nolensville, TN, in 2006 is today a beloved culinary destination with deep Nashville roots, a 500+ person team, and six locations sprinkled across Nashville, with outposts in Birmingham, AL; Louisville, KY; and Charleston, SC.




About the Author

Michael Aldrich

Michael Aldrich is Nashville Parent's Managing Editor and a Middle Tennessee arts writer. He and his wife, Alison, are the proud parents of 4-year-old Ezra and baby Norah.