UPDATE: J.C. Reid reports from Twitter: "Talked to Clarence Pierson. Still recuperating from 2x knee replacements. He vows to be back! Hopefully after holidays." Our phone breath must smell bad, but we're just glad that Reid spoke to Pierson and has good news to report.
Earlier this year, local food writer J.C. Reid was stunned to pull up to Pierson & Company in Acres Homes and find the seminal barbecue joint boarded up. Reid called owner Clarence Pierson, and was told that due to a knee surgery, Pierson was temporarily out of commission.
Pierson told Reid that he planned on reopening his restaurant in two weeks. That was in August.
It's now midway through November and Pierson & Company shows no signs of life. The phone has been disconnected, the building falling into neglect and bills piling up in the black mailbox out front. It looks like Pierson & Company is closed for good less than four years after opening.
Calls to both Pierson's home and cell numbers went unanswered, and two sources close to Pierson report that their own calls to the pitmaster have gone unanswered as well.
Pierson & Company -- which won Best Barbecue in our 2008 Best of Houston® awards -- was a favorite of our previous food critic, Robb Walsh, who included the restaurant on his well-attended barbecue tours and wrote about Pierson in 2008:
Along with the mesquite-smoked meats, it's the warm atmosphere that makes Pierson & Company unique. You seldom run into barbecue men as talkative as Clarence Pierson.
Pierson isn't talking these days, and that's a sad fact for barbecue fans across Houston.