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Shakeup at Southern Moon Smokehouse

Written By Scott Joseph On December 5, 2014

Southern Moon logoYou might say that Bryce Balluff has come to a fork in the road.

The chef was one of the owners of the Fork in the Road food truck and, more recently, opened Southern Moon Smokehouse, a creative barbecue restaurant on Curry Ford Road in Orlando. Now, Balluff has left the business to his partners, Nelson Hom and Anthony Briante.

Speaking by phone, Balluff said that he and his partners had different customer service and hospitality theories. Financial issues were also part of the reason for his leaving, according to both Balluff and Hom.

Hom said that Balluff "had some differences of how we were running the business. We didn’t ask him to leave, he did it on his own."

Briante, whose restaurant resume includes Stonewood and Peter Scott’s, will continue to manage the culinary side. Balluff said that he didn’t expect the food to alter in any way under Briante’s direction.

On of the problems that Southern Moon encountered was the inability to use all of the space that they have under contract in the Winn-Dixie plaza space. A large space was to be a brewery, but there is an issue regarding a sprinkler system — or, apparently, the lack of one — that prevents them from moving forward. Indeed, a staff member who was hired to be the restaurant’s master brewer also left.

The Fork in the Road food truck continues to operate, successfull, according to Hom. “The food truck is actually keeping a lot of things afloat,” he said.

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