Pitmaster Rob Bechtold is no longer working at Central City BBQ, according to a restaurant rep close to the situation.
The rep confirmed Bechtold was let go on Saturday, though a report by Todd Price on NOLA.com cites Burgau saying the departure was “mutual.” The rep did not immediately respond to follow-up questions about the details of the departure.
Eater has reached out to both Central City BBQ owner Aaron Burgau and Rob Bechtold, but has not heard back yet. Central City BBQ has only been open three months.
According to Price’s report, Bechtold had “developed a reputation for his argumentative and combative behavior.” In the report, Burgau describes “disagreements about the operation of the kitchen as the reason for the split,” such as Burgau’s idea that the kitchen should not run out of meat “in mid-afternoon before the dinner crowd arrived.”
Bechtold and Burgau had planned to compete together for Hogs for the Cause this weekend. According to a Becker Hall, co-founder of Hogs for the Cause, Burgau’s team will still compete without Bechtold.
Also today, Central City BBQ’s social media accounts were pulled and re-established, though there was no immediate information on why that happened.
Eater will update this story with any new information from the restaurant.
March 27, 2017 1:15 pm — This story was updated to reflect the current status of the Hogs for the Cause team that Burgau and Bechtold had planned to compete on together.