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View Full Version : What Famous BBQ Joints Have Impressed and Disappointed?


sandiegobbq
10-25-2011, 02:09 PM
What famous bbq joints have you been impressed with and which have you been disappointed with?

Phil's BBQ here in San Diego is famous but only in San Diego.

It is average at best and waaaayyyy over rated.

Which joints have you enjoyed and which did not live up to expectations?

Smoothsmoke
10-25-2011, 02:12 PM
Lucilles, not a fan, their sauce is the best thing going for them.

deguerre
10-25-2011, 02:14 PM
Big Bob Gibson's has both impressed AND disappointed me. When it was just the one location many years ago it couldn't be beat. Now it just doesn't seem to have the same special "I'm in BBQ Heaven" quality it used too. Perhaps opening up more locations had an effect. Or maybe it's that the Pit Master isn't at home often enough anymore due to competing. I dunno.

Boshizzle
10-25-2011, 02:17 PM
Disclaimer - When it comes to BBQ, I am hard to please and my opinions expressed here are just my opinions.

I don't think that Buz & Ned's in Richmond, VA lives up to the hype.
Q BBQ in Midlothian is good.
Bill's BBQ in Richmond is OK.
Allman's BBQ in Fredericksburg is living on it's reputation from the past.
Red, Hot & Blue in NOVA has good ribs.
Famous Dave's has eatable brisket. I don't like their ribs and their pork has warmed over flavor and they don't trim away excess fat.

There are others, but it won't do any good to mention them.

I am going on a Texas BBQ pilgrimage in December and can offer more input after that.

BIG ALAN
10-25-2011, 05:12 PM
What famous bbq joints have you been impressed with and which have you been disappointed with?

Phil's BBQ here in San Diego is famous but only in San Diego.

It is average at best and waaaayyyy over rated.

Which joints have you enjoyed and which did not live up to expectations?

I second that. People in San Diego don't know what good BBQ tastes like. Only good BBQ in SD is at MY house. :boxing:

BIG ALAN
10-25-2011, 05:36 PM
On a speed run 4 years ago from Denver to Pensacola, my son and I stopped at Sonny Bryan's original smokehouse (Dallas) on Inwood Rd, off I-35N. Took brisket sammy's and fortunately extra sause with us, the meat was dry. Found out later they don't smoke at that location anymore. Guess they trucked it in. Disappointing.
Want to go to the hyped Smitty's and Kreutz sometime. Friends in Houston however say there are much better places. The recent post by Donnie about the faux AAA article about those two places call for a little better intelligence planning if going that way. Luling Market comes recommended by another friend.
Maybe those of us who Q regularly are now jaded by our own successes,and are more easily disappointed.

ThomEmery
10-25-2011, 05:39 PM
I have found good que everywhere
cept some guy cookin que to 150 and reheating the next day

;0)

swallytrip
10-25-2011, 06:30 PM
Disclaimer - When it comes to BBQ, I am hard to please and my opinions expressed here are just my opinions.

I don't think that Buz & Ned's in Richmond, VA lives up to the hype.
Q BBQ in Midlothian is good.
Bill's BBQ in Richmond is OK.
Allman's BBQ in Fredericksburg is living on it's reputation from the past.
Red, Hot & Blue in NOVA has good ribs.
Famous Dave's has eatable brisket. I don't like their ribs and their pork has warmed over flavor and they don't trim away excess fat.

There are others, but it won't do any good to mention them.

I am going on a Texas BBQ pilgrimage in December and can offer more input after that.Have you ever made it to williamsburg to try pierces pitt ? I thought they also had one in Richmond...I dont live there anymore but always make it there when I visit. It is probably what sparked my love for pulled pork when I was little it opened in 1971 just had its 40th birthday It is my fave in general other than my own of course but ive had the ocasional mediocre meal from ther once or twice too but everyone has off days i guess.

jgh1204
10-25-2011, 10:25 PM
Keep in mind, there are two Luling City Market BBQs. One in Houston, one in Luling and they are NOT the same. The Houston one has a mustard sauce, the Luling one has tomato based sauce.

Dallas Dan
10-25-2011, 11:02 PM
I enjoy tasting Q from joints all over the country. It's not always to my liking but then I have been pleasantly surprised. The best surprises come from hole-in-the-wall places that seldom get publication.

Q-Dat
10-25-2011, 11:13 PM
The Shed! People stand in a line out the door to eat at the original location. Super sweet falling apart BBQ. Goes to show you thats what the general public thinks is great BBQ. Is it horrible? No it has a decent flavor, just way overcooked in my opinion, and I definitely like my Q more tender than a typical KCBS judge.

ALLENY
10-25-2011, 11:35 PM
what famous bbq joints have you been impressed with and which have you been disappointed with?

Phil's bbq here in san diego is famous but only in san diego.

It is average at best and waaaayyyy over rated.

Which joints have you enjoyed and which did not live up to expectations?

i disagree. Phil's is awesome! Their pork sandwich with fresh coleslaw is great , especially with their ice cold blue moon on tap! That is why they always are so crowded.

If you ever find yourself in compton ca. , there is an awesome takeout place named bludsoes. Awesome quality and awesome prices. I got a 3/4 pound chopped brisket sandwich for $4.50.

ALLENY
10-25-2011, 11:39 PM
Also blusoe's macaroni and cheese is excellent.

K-Train
10-26-2011, 11:19 AM
Pappas in Houston is pretty good.

twinsfan
10-26-2011, 07:47 PM
Have you ever made it to williamsburg to try pierces pitt ? I thought they also had one in Richmond...I dont live there anymore but always make it there when I visit. It is probably what sparked my love for pulled pork when I was little it opened in 1971 just had its 40th birthday It is my fave in general other than my own of course but ive had the ocasional mediocre meal from ther once or twice too but everyone has off days i guess.

Dude Pierces Pitt in Williamsburg.. Honestly not a huge fan of their pulled pork. Alright but the place seems a little to McDs for me.

Dallas Dan
10-26-2011, 07:53 PM
Pappas in Houston is pretty good.

Interesting. The Pappas in Dallas has never impressed me.

Outnumbered
10-26-2011, 08:48 PM
Biggest disapointment I've ever had is when I went looking for Stubbs in Lubbock to find out it was closed and there was no other Stubbs in town. Major let down. Only thing close was when I was in Austin and went to Stubbs for lunch, but was way too hung over from a night on 6th Street to really enjoy it.

Just did Carson's Ribs in Chicago last night. Not worth it. The ribs (babybacks) were nowhere near meaty. Too dry. And they brag that they're not fall off the bone. Not really even tear off the bone, IMO.

In KC here, I'm a bigtime fan of Oklahoma Joes. Bryants, it depends on the day. Gates is high priced and you can always get better for far cheaper.

Gore
10-26-2011, 09:00 PM
Disclaimer - When it comes to BBQ, I am hard to please and my opinions expressed here are just my opinions.

I don't think that Buz & Ned's in Richmond, VA lives up to the hype.
Q BBQ in Midlothian is good.


Have to agree on Buz and Ned's and QBBQ although I've only been to those once. B&N was way overpriced and mediocre. Had a nice pork sammie at Q BBQ.

Have you ever made it to williamsburg to try pierces pitt ?

Been to Pierce's several times, but not for at least 5 years. I always thought their food was good (but it isn't my favorite style).

Although you can find better BBQ elsewhere nearby, The Pit in Raleigh is a great place to visit.

Pat's BBQ in Salt Lake City was a bit of a disappointment, definitely shouldn't have gotten the brisket there.

King's in Petersburg was a disappointment as I could taste nothing but mustard.

Smiter Q
10-26-2011, 11:28 PM
For me, the SALTLICK near Austin TX rocks in atmosphere. The grounds itself are impressive.
When you walk in, you are greeted by this site of beauty......
http://i676.photobucket.com/albums/vv129/BWaustinTX/saltlicksausagerings.jpg

A disappointing one was Corky's for me.
Not so much the ribs, but the chicken tasted like an ashtray.

sandiegobbq
10-27-2011, 09:04 AM
I second that. People in San Diego don't know what good BBQ tastes like. Only good BBQ in SD is at MY house. :boxing:

I have had many bbq get togethers and everyone has said that my bbq is far better than Phil's.

I love backyard bbq.

sandiegobbq
10-27-2011, 09:05 AM
I have found good que everywhere
cept some guy cookin que to 150 and reheating the next day

;0)

Haha, that is 165 deg. thank you!

sandiegobbq
10-27-2011, 09:07 AM
i disagree. Phil's is awesome! Their pork sandwich with fresh coleslaw is great , especially with their ice cold blue moon on tap! That is why they always are so crowded.

If you ever find yourself in compton ca. , there is an awesome takeout place named bludsoes. Awesome quality and awesome prices. I got a 3/4 pound chopped brisket sandwich for $4.50.

Compton? Is it as dangerous as they say?

Everyone that I have cooked bbq for has said that my stuff is way better than Phil's.

I never tried the pulled pork at Phil's but I refuse to go back with those insane long lines.

deguerre
10-27-2011, 09:24 AM
Compton? Is it as dangerous as they say?



Probably not as dangerous as where I live.

http://www.theatlantic.com/national/archive/2011/05/the-10-most-dangerous-cities-in-america/239513/#slide6

Even Oakland is safer than Memphis.


As to Que Joints in Memphis, I agree with Smiter about Corky's. The Rendezvous also is all Rep and little quality. The serving staff also will try to rush you (The last time I went and I'm not going back) as they depend on a high turnover rate for their livelyhood. The good places in Memphis aren't exactly famous. To be honest, since I started making my own Que, I just don't go to restaurants any more unless I'm out of town. Oh, and Neelys (Yes, THOSE Neelys), in Nashville at least, had the absolutely WORST ribs I've ever had. Of the half rack I ordered, I wound up just throwing away three ribs.

HeSmellsLikeSmoke
10-27-2011, 11:31 AM
Keep in mind, there are two Luling City Market BBQs. One in Houston, one in Luling and they are NOT the same. The Houston one has a mustard sauce, the Luling one has tomato based sauce.

The one in Luling is just called "City Market". The one in Houston is called "Luling City Market" and is not related.

wnkt
10-27-2011, 12:32 PM
Big Bob Gibson's has both impressed AND disappointed me. When it was just the one location many years ago it couldn't be beat. Now it just doesn't seem to have the same special "I'm in BBQ Heaven" quality it used too. Perhaps opening up more locations had an effect. Or maybe it's that the Pit Master isn't at home often enough anymore due to competing. I dunno.

I got to go to Big Bob's a couple months ago and I was not very impressed with the pulled/chopped pork....no big deal. The slaw is what really stumped me....it was just micro ground cabbage........thats IT! no dressing of ANY KIND.
But they redeemed themselves....I went back the next day and had the ribs....now THAT was good!

deguerre
10-27-2011, 12:34 PM
I got to go to Big Bob's a couple months ago and I was not very impressed with the pulled/chopped pork....no big deal. The slaw is what really stumped me....it was just micro ground cabbage........thats IT! no dressing of ANY KIND.
But they redeemed themselves....I went back the next day and had the ribs....now THAT was good!

Yep, finely chopped cabbage, some vinegar and sugar is mostly what it is. I love it though.

bander7003
10-28-2011, 10:58 AM
Unfortunately most of the BBQ places here in Colorado have failed to impress me (at least the ones that I've tried. No offense to any that I haven't tried). We have great mexican and other food options. BBQ just isn't one of them. Most are overcooked and/or reheated. I recently had the ribs at one reputable place and they tasted like mush. I had to look around to be certain I hadn't accidently wandered into McD's and ordered a McRib.

Admittedly I do have high standards, but I'm sure there's good Q here somewhere that I just haven't found.

billm
10-28-2011, 11:46 AM
Just did Carson's Ribs in Chicago last night. Not worth it. The ribs (babybacks) were nowhere near meaty. Too dry. And they brag that they're not fall off the bone. Not really even tear off the bone, IMO.


with all the new BBQ places that have opened up in the last couple years here you ended up at one of the oldest (and worst) places :)

EricF
10-28-2011, 09:27 PM
Maybe it was just an off day when I stopped in at "The Shed" original location. As already stated way over cooked, but worse than that IMO I tasted no smoke in the meat. I guess that's just me now that I'm backyard Q'ing I want smoke flavor.


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

swallytrip
10-28-2011, 09:34 PM
Dude Pierces Pitt in Williamsburg.. Honestly not a huge fan of their pulled pork. Alright but the place seems a little to McDs for me.
I do get your point because I feel the same way a little. I mainly reminise about pierces when I was young and lived within walking distance. It was just a little building with a walk up window and a smoke house out back. The thing that made it so good I believe was the simplicity but yes now it seems a little too commercialized. However even though its not everyones style of Q you cant deny the quality and popularity in the because they consistantly go through over 2,000 pounds of pork every day and the people vote and they have the proof that its the areas best. On a sad note even now that I dont live there but visit a couple times a year it doesnt taste as good as it used to and prices seem to keep going up even my dad that still lives there says the same.

swallytrip
10-28-2011, 09:39 PM
Have to agree on Buz and Ned's and QBBQ although I've only been to those once. B&N was way overpriced and mediocre. Had a nice pork sammie at Q BBQ.



Been to Pierce's several times, but not for at least 5 years. I always thought their food was good (but it isn't my favorite style).

Although you can find better BBQ elsewhere nearby, The Pit in Raleigh is a great place to visit.

Pat's BBQ in Salt Lake City was a bit of a disappointment, definitely shouldn't have gotten the brisket there.

King's in Petersburg was a disappointment as I could taste nothing but mustard.
Like I replied to the other pierces quote I used to live near by but dont anymore and only visit yearly now and it isnt what it used to be Uufourtunately. It still gets all the awards and is a state land mark pretty much but if they dont change some things I think its gonna start going down I notice changes from year to year and the quality seems to be slipping a bit and prices continue to go up. There main popular combo now Pulled pork sandwhich and order of fries home made cookie and drink is up over $7.50 now I dont see that remaning popular for too long.

bbqchicken
10-28-2011, 11:24 PM
Lucilles, not a fan, their sauce is the best thing going for them.

I agree. I have never been there but my work had a catered lunch from them once. It was good but not fantastic.

HRMBBQ
10-29-2011, 08:44 AM
Boneheads BBQ in Halifax, Nova Scotia Canada is amazing and extremelly delicious! I love going there with my co-workers and there serving size and quality of food is phenominal! Also the staff there is amazing! Its the Best BBQ joint I went to in my travel all over north america! I highly recommend them!

Gore
10-29-2011, 12:20 PM
Boneheads BBQ in Halifax, Nova Scotia Canada is amazing and extremelly delicious! I love going there with my co-workers and there serving size and quality of food is phenominal! Also the staff there is amazing! Its the Best BBQ joint I went to in my travel all over north america! I highly recommend them!

Tried Boneheads a couple years ago at a festival. The sammie I had was a bit short on meat and expensive, but otherwise tasted pretty good. It is hard to judge based on festival food as cost and controls sometimes go out the window. It was good enough that I did mean to give the restaurant a try. For most people it is a bit off the beaten path. :becky:

twinsfan
10-30-2011, 07:19 PM
I do get your point because I feel the same way a little. I mainly reminise about pierces when I was young and lived within walking distance. It was just a little building with a walk up window and a smoke house out back. The thing that made it so good I believe was the simplicity but yes now it seems a little too commercialized. However even though its not everyones style of Q you cant deny the quality and popularity in the because they consistantly go through over 2,000 pounds of pork every day and the people vote and they have the proof that its the areas best. On a sad note even now that I dont live there but visit a couple times a year it doesnt taste as good as it used to and prices seem to keep going up even my dad that still lives there says the same.

Yea, I've only been once on our trip to the village.. the picnic tables outside were pretty nice but the day we were there inside felt borderline dirty.. it probably used to be a great joint but went bigtime. Ahh, commercialization. What a sad thing.

BigTony
10-31-2011, 03:14 AM
Moonlite BarBQ in Owensboro,KY used to be a favorite destination for some of us local bikers;great food ten years ago,good prices.The buffet has everything you can imagine,worth the trip just for the cornbread muffins.
Nothing in Indy has superimpressed me-Squeeler's is OK but expensive,and the chains are a facsimile of what I can cook myself.Used to be a joint called Purnell's in Eagledale,great q-don't think it is open anymore.
Does anyone remember The Roadrunner off I-65 from the 60's?As a child this started the qball rolling for me.My folks would stop in on our way to Florida for vacation,and then again on our way home.The proprietor always remembered my name and that I loved his cooking!Haven't been in 40 years,doubt that it exists anymore.T

Bigmista
10-31-2011, 10:07 AM
I second that. People in San Diego don't know what good BBQ tastes like. Only good BBQ in SD is at MY house. :boxing:

Try Brazen BBQ in North County.Comp team that opened a Super nice restaurant.

Bigmista
10-31-2011, 10:12 AM
i disagree. Phil's is awesome! Their pork sandwich with fresh coleslaw is great , especially with their ice cold blue moon on tap! That is why they always are so crowded.

If you ever find yourself in compton ca. , there is an awesome takeout place named bludsoes. Awesome quality and awesome prices. I got a 3/4 pound chopped brisket sandwich for $4.50.

I understand Bigmista's Barbecue is pretty good in SoCal. Have you tried it?

2Fat
10-31-2011, 03:19 PM
17th street in Marion has been hit or miss over the years, Strawberrys BBQ in Holcombe, Mo has been good. I like the Ribs at the Rendezvous in Memphis but they are a personal choice. Germantown Comissary has aways been very good---Morrison Grocery, Ead,tn(east of mempis) well worth the drive
Scotts BBq in Hemingway SC is always been excellent as has been the Skylight in Ayden,NC..
Q in Ricmond(Midlothian) bbq was good, hush puppies outstanding!

Sweatmans in Holy Hill SC is outstanding too

1MoreFord
10-31-2011, 07:30 PM
Impressed:
Kreuz's - Best pork loin/chop I've ever had
Smitty's
City Market

Unimpressed:
Rendezvous - If you really want to be unimpressed try the 1/2 loin 1/2 rib dinner
The Shed
Interstate