David Bessinger

Years of Participation

A true Charleston native, Melvin “David” Bessinger is the real deal. Born and raised with his granddaddy’s legendary mustard barbecue sauce in his baby bottle, no doubt. David was brought up working in the family business since childhood. As Owner/Operator of Melvin’s Barbecue with two locations (James Island and Mt. Pleasant), David’s been at the helm since 1982. Influenced mostly by his father, who taught him more than just how to cook, but how to run a thoughtful business, care for his employees and keep customers happy and coming back for more. David is a BBQ obsessed, full of life (and BBQ stories) local who has never met a stranger.

After a successful long running joint-family business in Charleston since 1961, Melvin and David Bessinger founded Melvin’s Barbecue in 1982. Melvin’s Barbecue has graced many a southerner’s dinner table, and if you grew up around here, chances are they provided a meal at your wedding, sports camp or charitable event. David Bessinger and Melvin’s have remained a mainstay of the SC Barbecue scene since the beginning, and through it all remains a local favorite. Winner of Best BBQ in Charleston and Mt. Pleasant by Charleston Living, Moultrie News, Mt. Pleasant Magazine, and named “Top BBQ places to visit in America” by Southern Living. When asked how Melvin’s has been so successful for so long? David says “It’s simple. Listening to my customers, and preparing all-wood perfectly smoked meats. But the REAL secret is our sauce.”