4 Rivers Founder John Rivers combines the best BBQ techniques from around the country: Texas Brisket, Carolina Ribs, Kansas City Burnt Ends, Memphis Pulled Pork, and California Tri-Tip with a wide array of options of homestyle sides, main dish options incorporating meats and even some meatless options. Some say the 4R line of BBQ sauces are unnecessary as the meat is perfect. Others find it essential to their 4R experience, if even only for their fries. Leave room for dessert as the 4R Sweet Shop features cupcakes, cookies, southern dessert comfort foods like Bread Pudding, and new favorites like Fried Oreos.
John Rivers’ dedication and commitment to creative ingredient combinations and bold flavor twists have garnered numerous awards and honors for 4 Rivers, including an invitation in 2003 to cook at The James Beard House as well as being judged “The South’s Best BBQ Joints” by Southern Living.
Accolades were never the goal as John will be the first to tell you. “This was never supposed to be a restaurant,” he says. 4 Rivers began out of his love for BBQ and his love for helping people. Feeding those in need and raising money for fundraisers were the backbone of what he called the “Barbecue Ministry” which grew to him needing to open the first 4 Rivers Smokehouse on Fairbanks Avenue in Winter Park.
Winter Garden was founded at the turn of last century fourteen miles west of Downtown Orlando, roughly what Orlando consisted of at that time. Winter Garden developed around Plant Street on the south shore of Lake Apopka, cultivating a charming downtown district now a throwback to twentieth-century Main Street America.
The area around Winter Garden and all of West Orange County has grown steadily ever since, reaching the boundaries of present-day Orlando creating the westernmost suburbs of the Orlando metropolitan area. Near Florida’s Turnpike, the 429 and the end of the 408, 4 Rivers Smokehouse in Winter Garden will only add a few minutes to your trip and will always be worth your time.
See what others have had to say about 4 Rivers Smokehouse Winter Garden
“Hands down best BBQ in Orlando area.”
“Oh my God. This was amazing. Best bbq ever.”
“So good!! This is my favorite barbecue joint anywhere.”
“The best BBQ in Florida!”“Absolutely the best.“
“I would consider myself a total barbecue snob and this place is the bomb”
“I would recommend this barbecue place over anyone else ever.”
“You can never go wrong with 4Rivers.”
“Good food for BBQ lovers! Great selections with authentic taste!”
“this place loves families, and the military, and provides the hospitality and friendliness you hope central florida is known for. we will be back!”
“The brisket is smoked perfectly and has a great rub. The side selection is great and they are all delicious. The dessert options are hard to beat.”