Earlier this week, news broke that Allen & Son Barbecue is closing its location north of Chapel Hill.

Keith Allen had operated the restaurant for decades and had grown to be a prominent figure in the barbecue world. Allen & Son was repeatedly included on various rankings touting the best barbecue across the country.

Residents quickly took to social media to voice their condolences for the restaurant’s closing.

“I think I’m gonna need to take the day off to deal with this grief,” wrote Justin Weber on Twitter. “I wish I had known. I would’ve made pilgrimage for one last plate.”

“The sad state of Triangle barbecue joints just got sadder. At least skylight is making it’s way to raleigh,” wrote another user, referencing the famous Skylight Inn which is set to open another location in Raleigh.

Users on Facebook reacted similarly, offering memories of their time at the restaurant and bemoaning the fact that they didn’t stop in for one last bite.

“Happy retirement and thanks for three years of CHHS lunches!” wrote Matthew Ripley-Moffitt.

No,” wrote Marc Pons.”I was going to take my 10 year old son this weekend for his first Allen and Son sandwich.”

“I am despondent!” wrote Cindy Jackson DiLiberti. Another user responded with, “I agree! We lived a mile from Allen’s for almost 20 years. We’ll really miss it!”

But while the majority of online reactions were overwhelming support for the restaurant, some people were not as sad to see Allen & Son close.

Hate to be a negative but I never could understand how they rated so high,” wrote Rachel Hawkins on Facebook, to which another user responded with, “I so agree!”

Eddie Ellis on Facebook wrote a heartfelt response, which seemed to sum up the feelings of local residents.

“Been knowing Keith and his family forever. The pride in the BBQ , hickory smoked, Ol school slow cooked. I wish the best cause you always provided the best. Times are changing and there are few like Keith keeping the tradition alive. Sad day but deserved retirement. Thank You.”

Featured image via stubbsandsonbbq.com.