This place was mentioned by Siumaieater in the opening/closing thread awhile back.
Passed by on our way to Atwater Market this afternoon and it looked very promising.
While shopping, we decided to forego grilling for supper and pick up BBQ take-out instead.
Very small, cool space and the prep/cooking/serving areas seemed to be well thought-out. The menu isn't clear at first, takes a bit of studying to figure it out. They have take-out style menus as well as a board behind the serving counter.
Although theres salads (cole-slaw based with condiments and topped with meat), chili, wings, and stuffed baked potatoes, the mains are BBQed pork side ribs, BBQed beef ribs, and rotisserie chicken.
After figuring what to order (the rib tasting dinner: 2 half racks of pork ribs, 2 half racks of beef ribs, 4 servings of potatoes, 4 salads (cole & potato), 4 pieces of corn on the cob, and buns) we got in line.
Everyone in line has to: order, receive their food, pay for their order. Only then can the next person can begin the process over. It was frustrating (but hey, they're new, right? Open 2 months).
While waiting for our food, we had a beer and 1/2 bottle of wine (nice selection of imported beers - Singha, Red Stripe, Baltika 7 to name a few all $5.45) and looked around...
Their rotisserie is gas, seemingly nothing to write home about, chicken looked OK.
I could see the ribs and smell the smoke, but I couldn't tell exactly where they did the BBQing...downstairs or in the back maybe? Decorating one wall was generic gallon jugs of "general tao", "Asiatique", and "Buffalo XXX". Guess the wing flavors? Yep, general tao, style Asiatique, etc. I dunno, seemed goofy to decorate with pre-made sauces.
Another small item was watching the cook pull pre-made, pre-packaged chopped cabbage/carrot out of a bag. OK, you use pre-chopped stuff for your 'slaw, no prob, but do you have to advertise it?
They have a coupla nice touches: they serve in-house food plopped on butcher paper on a round tray. Some items are served simply in a big metal scoop.
Our food was ready and off we went.
OK, takeout might not be the best way to judge a restaurant, but I don't think it would have mattered otherwise.
We asked for the ribs with sauce on the side instead of on them (they usually squeeze sauce on the ribs just before serving). We wanted to try them on their own merit.
Both pieces of pork ribs were from the tail end of the rack - small triangular piece. OK, if you get one order, it might be luck of the draw to get these small ribs, but 2 in 2 orders? seemed skimpy. The ribs were way over done, they just fell apart, looking more like pulled pork than ribs. They were moist, but tasted only of paprika, no BBQ flavor. I think they spent way too much time in the altosham warmer.
The beef ribs were nice-size portions, 4 ribs each, buts that's the best I can say about them. The edges were dry, between the bones moist, but again, lacking BBQ. Again, I think old age in the altosham...
The potatoes were not bad, potato salad good, corn good (although the menu shows them grilled, they're simply boiled).
Had the ribs been good, it would have good value at $36 (a SINGLE half rack of rib dinner is $17-$20 - this is equivalent to 4 of these), but alas the ribs were a let down.
Mrs. porker made a sandwich with the pork rib meat in sauce with coleslaw. THAT was much better than the ribs alone. I dipped the beef meat into a coupla sauces and it helped a lot.
I think these folks make very good sandwiches (they have 7 kinds including wraps, running $7-$9 ), they're generous with the meat and have lotsa condiments available.
Too bad they fall short (to me) on the ribs. And dangnabbit I had high hopes for their beef ribs!