After almost 20 years in the security and private protection field, during which he kept a close eye on some of the country’s most public figures, Brooklyn native Billy Durney is fulfilling a longtime dream by taking the helm as Firemaker and Owner at Hometown Bar-B-Que. Since first learning to smoke meat as a youngster during visits to his grandparents’ cabin in rural Pennsylvania, Billy has spent years obsessing over his barbecue, traveling around the United States and abroad perfecting his techniques. Starting in the backyard, cooking for family and friends, he has now realized his lifelong passion for wood, fire and meat.
Since opening Hometown in September 2013, Billy has been featured in national media such as Nightline, Good Morning America, The New York Times, The New Yorker, Bon Appetit, The Food Network, Cooking Channel and a variety of other major publications. He has appeared as a guest chef in Nashville’s Music City Food + Wine Festival, Charleston Wine and Food Festival, NYC Wine and Food Festival, the James Beard House, Fire it Up (Maui, HI) Le Festival YUL EAT (Montreal) and Holy Smokes BBQ (Sweden).
Billy is currently working on opening three highly anticipated restaurants in 2018- Hometown Pan Fired Chicken and a Jewish style Deli both in Brooklyn, as well as an all wood fired and barbecue restaurant in the Allapattah neighborhood of Miami.
“I love cooking with wood, and I love manipulating flavors,” he says. “I’m just trying to cook the best bite I can cook. I don’t know what to call it. We’re doing it in Brooklyn, and I’m very proud to be part of that community.”