Smōk-hau̇s Opening Second Location in Hicksville This August, More to Come

Smōk-hau̇s is on fire.

The barbecue joint launched in Garden City by former derivatives trader and MIT grad, Manny Voumvourakis, has been scraping up the “best of” awards like grizzle off the grill and now he’s expanding to Hicksville with a larger kitchen, huge smokers and big plans to expand.

It’s probably not too surprising. Voumvourakis is a smart guy with a vision and a passion for not just barbecue but barbecue that’s also not the typical dripping-with-sauce kind you can get anywhere else. Like the complex financial instruments Voumvourakis used to trade, his food isn’t just one single flavor; he’s pulled a little from here and there to create something that’s greater than the sum of its parts.

Voumvourakis says his Greek heritage influences the food at  smōk-hau̇s. He wants an option that’s smoked to perfection but is a little bit healthier and different. The menu has Asian, Latin American and Mediterranean influences that makes smōk-hau̇s stand out from other barbecue joints – but it’s still all barbecue.

“At the end of the day it’s the same protein,” Voumvourakis said in a recent interview with

The proof is in the consistent praise and accolades basted on smōk-hau̇s over the last few years. Yet, smōk-hau̇s was not the result of decades of trial and error and failed experiments like other restaurants. Voumvourakis jumped into the business with both feet and without experience.

“I’m a non-traditional restaurateur,” said Voumvourakis. “I went into this with two months of experience as a waiter in a diner.”

Voumvourakis got interested in barbecue on Upstate hunting trips with his buddies. A friend turned him on to cooking meat slow and low. That experience inspired Voumvourakis to seek out proper training from the best.

The top of the game at the time (back in 2016) was Myron Mixon, a celebrity pitmaster who was a barbecue world champion appearing on shows like BBQ Pitmasters and BBQ Pit Wars. Mixon was running a bootcamp in Georgia and Voumvourakis showed up. 

“I went down and learned how to smoke meat his way,” he said.

Voumvourakis put his own twist on the technique and with smōk-hau̇s he wanted to perfect the concept so that it would not just be delectable but scalable.

Voumvourakis even contract Mixon – who has a side-business building custom smokers – to make the smokers for his Garden City restaurant. Mixon also made the gigantic smokers for the new smōk-hau̇s in Hicksville.

This new spot is the beginning of a larger plan for Voumvourakis. He and his investor group – predominantly made up of Voumvourakis’ MIT fraternity brothers – would like to expand and replicate the concept.  His cooking process was perfected for not just one location but 100.

The new location at 954 South Broadway will be primarily takeout and delivery with no sit-down dining.

“This store popped up – it was a commercial kitchen that was built out by someone who wanted to get involved in corporate catering right before Covid hit,” he said.

It ended up being perfect for his plans.

“It was too good of an opportunity to give up,” said Voumvourakis.

The much larger kitchen will also enable him to provide a greater capacity for the catering side of his business.

“We do a lot of corporate catering,” he said. “We deliver all over Long Island, New York City and lower Westchester.”

Voumvourakis expects to get approvals finalized in the next few weeks and he aims to open around the third week in August. “Once this store gets set up we will be actively looking for another location,” Voumvourakis said.

Like the food itself, the name smōk-hau̇s is a twist on “smokehouse” – a phonetic spelling of the word. Voumvourakis said he usually has to spell it out for people; something he knew he’d have to do a lot when he picked the name.

“I said, ‘I’m gonna spell it a lot’ but my last name is Voumvourakis so I’m used to it,” he joked.

Locations: Hicksville: 954 South Broadway; Garden City: 7 12th Street, (516) 400-7102.

📷 smōk-hau̇s/Manny Voumvourakis. Hicksville location of smōk-hau̇s.

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