News Releases

Thursday, June 7, 2018

Isakson Hosts Annual Bipartisan Senate Barbecue Lunch

'Thursday Lunch Group' feast prepared fresh by South 40 Smokehouse of Marietta, Ga.

WASHINGTON – U.S. Senator Johnny Isakson, R-Ga., today hosted his tenth annual bipartisan barbecue lunch for U.S. senators and staff from both sides of the political aisle.

“It’s my honor every year to treat my colleagues and the staff who keep this place running with fresh Georgia barbecue,” said Isakson. “It’s a perfect way to kick off summer in D.C., and it’s a great opportunity for Republican and Democrat senators to join together over lunch and put aside politics for a while. I’m especially thankful to the crew from South 40 Smokehouse who drove their smokers and meats from Georgia to D.C. and made this bipartisan lunch possible.”

This year’s luncheon was catered by South 40 Smokehouse, family-owned and operated by Dale and Tracey Thornton from Isakson’s hometown of Marietta, Ga. The full-service catering company smoked the meats and prepared the main courses for the luncheon in Arlington, Va., delivering it to Capitol Hill today, where they fed nearly 200 senators and staff members.

Lunch was served to nearly 70 senators from both sides of the aisle in the Kennedy Caucus Room of the *Russell Senate Office Building. The tradition is part of Senate Republican’s “Thursday Lunch Group,” where each week a different host senator treats his Republican colleagues to lunch featuring their home-state cuisine. Isakson has regularly opted to open his annual lunch up to Democrats as well as Republicans as a great way to find common ground with senators, regardless of political affiliation.

A staff lunch was also held in Isakson’s office where he hosted more than 120 Hill staffers, including staff and interns from fellow Georgia Senator David Perdue’s office, leadership and committee staff, military liaison offices, Capitol Police and a few reporters.

Today’s menu included smoked duck with roasted peach glaze from Currahee Vineyard in Toccoa, Ga., pulled pork, beef brisket, Saint Louis pork ribs, South 40 baked beans, cranberry pecan broccoli salad, rolls and macaroni and cheese. Dessert included “Sweet Georgia Peach Cobbler” featuring peaches from Georgia’s Lane Southern Orchards in Fort Valley, Ga.

A selection of photo highlights can be found here.

*The Russell Senate Office Building is the oldest Senate office building and was named for Georgia’s own Senator Richard B. Russell. It is also where the offices of both Isakson and Sen. David Perdue, R-Ga., are located.