Mark your calendars now for the official Yak Ales Perth Barbecue Festival dinner at The Merrywell, featuring international guest pitmaster Mike Johnson of Sugarfire Smoke House, St Louis Missouri.

Hailing from a background in fine dining, Chef Mike Johnson launched his culinary career under young Emeril Lagasse. Today, Johnson’s the chef and owner of St Louis’ Sugarfire Smoke House, an award-winning restaurant known for its succulent brisket, pulled pork and ribs, as well as its signature sandwiches and sides that shine light on Johnson’s dynamic capacity. With six locations (and counting), Sugarfire has consistently been ranked best barbecue in St. Louis and Johnson continues to establish himself as culinary master and renowned competitor, placing 1st in the 2015 Memphis in May World Championship (seafood), 3rd in the 2014 Memphis in May World Championship (poultry), and most recently, 3rd in the 2015 World Food Championship (bacon). Chef Mike has been featured on a variety of national television shows, including Food Network’s BBQ, Brews & ‘Que (feat. Michael Symon), Destination America’s BBQ Pitmasters, and Food Network’s Beat Bobby Flay!


Held at Crown Perth’s hero pub, The Merrywell on Thursday 6 April 2017, Johnson will collaborate with The Merrywell’s Head Chef, Ryan Ebbs on this one-off barbecue feast featuring some of Sugarfire’s award-winning food including brisket, pulled pork, sausage links and Southern sides, with drinks by Yak Ales and Pepperjack Wines.


Renowned for its American-inspired dishes including Mac & Cheese Balls, Fish Tacos and Lollipop Buffalo Wings as well as substantial meals like its famed burgers and award winning steak sandwich – The Merrywell is the perfect venue to kick off festivities with the Official Dinner.


The dinner will also feature interviews with some of the international guests in town for the inaugural Yak Ales Perth Barbecue Festival, including:

  • John David Wheeler, head cook for the Natural Born Grillers BBQ Team, and co-owner of the famous Memphis Barbecue Co. restaurants. John David is one of the most award-winning barbecue cooks in the world. Among his many accomplishments, he’s a two-time winner of the overall Cooking Team of the Year award, winner of the World Grand Championship at Memphis in May, winner of three separate World Championships and over 75 Grand Championships.
  • Jim Johnson, a Kansas City Barbecue Society master barbecue teacher and highly decorated barbecue pitmaster, having won 76 Grand Championships during his 28-year competition career. Jim has finished first in every category at four Memphis in in May contests on four occasions, and finished in the top ten nine times. Jim has also been crowned the Whole Hog World Champion at the prestigious Jack Daniels World Championship Invitational. Jim and his wife Becky are part of the KCBS International Outreach team.

Tickets are on sale now via Moshtix, $95 (plus booking fee).