Emil Villa's Hick'ry Pit was introduced to the world in 1928. A man named Emil Villa opened a small storefront on the old trolley line on Telegraph Avenue in downtown Oakland to introduce California barbecue to the world.
Mr. Emil Villa, was already known around Oakland for his fine pies, soon gained a reputation for the best barbecued ribs and meats as well. By blending a bit of the old with the new, our mission is to bomb your taste buds with flavors and damn good BBQ ribs. We strive to provide food that’s Simple, Classic, and Fresh.
Past & Present
With the success of the restaurants Mr. Emil Villa parted ways with the chain, taking some of the branches, and renaming them Original Hick'ry Pit. The original restaurants were purchased in 1979 by Clorox, and soon after Emil Villas expanded to 9 restaurants in 1985. A year later, in 1986, the locations were purchased by Michael K. & Dave Preuss. The various remaining locations (Walnut Creek, Hayward, Livermore, Campbell) are now individually owned and mangaged.
(Emil Villas Hickory Pit, n.d.)