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Gus’s BBQ in South Pasadena

The original neon sign for Gus’s Barbecue, which opened in 1946 and has been remodeled by new owners, is one of the few remaining relics of the restaurant’s past. The sign’s historical significance has been recognized by the Museum of Neon Art. (Stefano Paltera / For The Times)
Brothers Chris, left, and John Bicos bought Gus’s Barbecue from its namesake’s extended family late last year. They’re no strangers to the restaurant business; their father founded Pasadena’s Original Tops on Colorado Boulevard in 1952. (Stefano Paltera / For The Times)
The main dining room of the remodeled restaurant features a large painting of the famous bluesman Robert Johnson. Owners Chris and John Bicos commissioned the painting from a local artist. (Stefano Paltera / For The Times])
Frosted glass emblazoned with the restaurant’s logo adds a retro feel to the remodeled restaurant. (Stefano Paltera / For The Times)
The bar at Gus’s Barbecue, once comfortably run-down, is now backed by corrugated galvanized steel and flat screen TVs. The bar countertop is the original article, though, and the bar railing was stripped and refinished in bronze. (Stefano Paltera/ For The Times)
Memphis-style baby back ribs are slathered in Gus’s homemade barbecue sauce (also available in pots on the table) and served with sweet potato fries and coleslaw. (Stefano Paltera/ For The Times)
The original counter seats from the 1946 incarnation of Gus’s Barbecue were recovered and the adjacent booths, although new, are red just like the original booths. (Stefano Paltera / For The Times)