Famous Dave's founder is opening a new barbecue restaurant

Famous Dave Anderson isn’t Famous Dave anymore. And he’s launching a new restaurant — ­Jimmie’s Old Southern Smokehouse BBQ — to prove it.

Anderson, creator of the barbecue restaurant chain that bears his name, hasn’t been involved in Famous Dave’s management for 12 years. But he continued to do some consulting and played a role in the company’s marketing, appearing in advertisements.

Not anymore.

Anderson said he ended his relationship with Minnetonka-based Famous Dave’s in March 2014, signing a one-year noncompete agreement. The year is up, and on April 14 the smoked meat entrepreneur plans to unveil Jimmie’s — named after his barbecue-loving father — in Hayward, the northwest Wisconsin town where he opened the original Famous Dave’s in 1994.

“I have no connection with Famous Dave’s at all,” he said. “They don’t call, and that’s OK. I wish them well.”

Famous Dave’s did not respond to inquiries for comment.

Anderson said his eye is on the kitchen these days. “I’m really excited about getting back to my roots, which is making great tasting barbecue and ­making it from scratch,” Anderson told the Star Tribune Wednesday.

Asked if he plans to expand the concept, Anderson was noncommittal but left the door open. “If you grow, it will be because the people love it, and I’m sure they’re going to love it.”

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