In episode 3 of Queer Eye's newly-released third season, the Fab Five head to Jones Bar-B-Q, a spot that Antoni dubbed the best barbecue in Kansas City. The recipients of the episode's makeovers are the owners of Jones Bar-B-Q, Deborah and Mary Jones. The two were nominated by Deborah's daughter, Izora, because being two of the only female pitmasters in all of Kansas City leaves little time for these two to take care of themselves.
Though it's Antoni's stamp of approval that gets the Fab Five to the barbecue restaurant, it's not the first time the Jones sisters have received serious praise for their cooking. According to a 2016 article in the Kansas City Star, Ardie Davis, barbecue expert and author of over 10 barbecue and grilling books, classifies Mary and Deborah's barbecue as old school in the best possible way. "It isn’t fancy. It's very simple and direct. The flavor is not over-smoked and (the meat) not so neatly trimmed you miss the fat," Davis says.
In the same Kansas City Star piece, Doug Worgul, who featured Jones Bar-B-Q in his 2001 book The Grand Barbecue: A Celebration of the History, Places, Personalities and Techniques of Kansas City Barbecue, called the Jones sisters the hardest working people he has ever met and praised them for their "artisan approach that cannot be replicated in higher-volume barbecue restaurants."
Deborah and Mary came by the artisan approach honestly. As Deborah says in their introduction in episode 3 of Queer Eye season 3, "Barbecue is in our DNA." They first learned how to cook from their father, Leavy B. Jones Sr, who owned and operated the first Jones Bar-B-Q, which opened in 1987. They have over 30 years of experience, but took a break from running their barbecue joint in 2009. According to Izora, the sisters reopened the restaurant a few years later to help put her through college.
A big part of the storyline in the Jones sister's episode of Queer Eye is getting their homemade barbecue sauce bottled so it can be sold. The two had struggled for years to do this on their own, but it proved too difficult to make enough in bulk to keep up with orders. So, Antoni and Karamo take the sisters to Original Juans, a specialty foods company that creates specialty sauces, salsas, snacks, and dips for wholesale, retail, and private labels. Original Juan was actually sold last April and is now called Spicin' Foods. A rep for Spicin' Foods told Refinery29 in an email, "Our Product Development Manager, Tommy Carter, helped create a match to their secret ingredient just in time for filming. We're proud to have been able to partner with the Jones sisters and help them develop their recipe and get their sauce bottled. Also, the sauce is delicious! The secret ingredient gives it a rich and unique flavor."
Last year, Steve Harvey purchased a large quantity of the Jones Bar-B-Q sauce to give to his audience members during a December episode of The Steve Harvey Show in which Deborah and Mary appeared to talk about the business. For those who weren't in the audience that day, however, the sauce can be purchased online on Jones Bar-B-Q's brand new website. One 15-ounce bottle is available for $6.99, three-packs are going for $17.97, and six-packs are $29.99. You can also call the restaurant to place an order directly, or if you're in Kansas City, you can stop by and pick up a bottle of the very special sauce in person. If you get a chance, you should definitely get yourself a bottle of this stuff, because there's no recreating it at home since the Jones sisters won't reveal the secret ingredient to anyone.