Andy Husbands got his start in the restaurant industry working at Hazel’s Bakery and today is one of Boston’s most celebrated culinary experts, as well as an internationally renowned pit master, and Author and Chef/Restaurateur. In 1996, Andy opened neighborhood bistro Tremont647 and later, Sister Sorel. In June 2016, Andy opened The Smoke Shop BBQ which is an 150-seat barbeque destination that pays homage to his extensive background on the competitive barbecue circuit.
Andy moved from Seattle to Needham his freshman year of high school. While at NHS, he wrestled and overall enjoyed high school but also characterizes his life during this time as, “sorted and challenging in multiple ways… It was hard coming from a big city to a small town, yet it was exciting because I met lots of great new people in a new world.”
After graduating from NHS, Andy attended Johnson & Wales University where he graduated magna cum laude with degrees in Culinary Arts and Hospitality Management. His first job post college was at the popular East Coast Grill in Cambridge where he worked under the helm of Award-Winning Chef and his mentor Chris Schlesinger. In 1995, Husbands set out on a cross-country journey on his motorcycle, discovering a new kind of love for food through a variety of experiences like working at notable San Francisco restaurants and living on a farm in New Mexico. In 1995, Andy ultimately returned to Boston to embark on his own venture.
It is no surprise that the message Andy would like to pass on to NHS students is to “do what you love, and if you aren’t sure what that is, just keep trying to find it.” Andy credits NHS with helping him figure out his path. He also made friendships at NHS that have withstood the test of time – one being fellow classmate and 1987 grad Chris Hart. Andy and Chris opened Tremont647 together and Andy describes Chris as “super smart and a trustworthy friend.”
One of the most memorable life experiences Andy had in high school was during a tough wrestling match. He was getting beat badly and gave up at the end. The next week during wrestling practice, the coaches crushed him and made him practice at a higher weight. This experience taught him never to give up. “You always have something inside you and can always go further. People are counting on you and your team expects you not to give
up.” This philosophy has contributed to his success in the team oriented environment of restaurants.
Andy has competed in the 6th season of FOX Television’s fiery “Hell’s Kitchen” and is internationally-recognized for his BBQ team, IQUE BBQ, who became the first New England team to win the World Champions of BBQ Title in 2009 at the famed Jack Daniels World Championship in Tennessee. Andy has also been acknowledged by the Massachusetts Restaurant Association as the 2014 MRA Chef of the Year. In addition to these accomplishments, he has co-authored several cookbooks including “Wicked Good Burgers,” “Wicked Good BBQ,” “Grill to Perfection,” “The Fearless Chef,” and the recently released “Pitmaster.”
Deeply rooted in the community, Andy is a large contributor to Share Our Strength, an organization dedicated to ending childhood hunger, as well as an active board member of the Massachusetts Restaurant Association and a Rodman Celebration Restaurant Chair.
In his spare time, Andy enjoys teaching at Pine Street Inn and spending time with his wife, Rice, at their home in Stoneham.