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Uncle Frank's - yes, this is okay


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Restaurants & Bars San Francisco Bay Area

Uncle Frank's - yes, this is okay

David Sloo | | Mar 31, 2007 05:57 PM

Uncle Frank's, in its current Mountain View spot behind a bar that includes a pool table, serves perfectly good barbecue. Do not avoid it, do not shun it. The barbecue is completely edible.

I stopped by early in the day to check that Frank would have brisket for me that evening, asked when he would close, and generally sussed out what we might eat, viz.:

sliced brisket with hot sauce. Good. Sweet, unremarkable hot sauce. However, the brisket is smoky, neither dry nor greasy. Frank's smoked brisket is pretty potent in flavor.

chicken pieces with mild sauce. I think the chicken itself is largely flavorless, which is pretty much what you get in chickens these days. However, the penetrating smoke seemed to help, and the wing- and leg pieces were all moist.

pork ribs with mild sauce. Dull, but also smokey. Even less flavor than the chicken.


Cajun corn: spicy creamed sweet corn kernels. Edible.
Cole slaw: in spite of including red cabbage, utterly dull.
Beans: fairly dry, but smoky. These were quite good, even delicious. Would order again.
Cornbread: this is a dry, undersweetened cake, and neither of us liked it.

There is also pepper vinegar on the table, with little Tabasco (bird) peppers in vinegar. I at a few of these, and they are a fine, piquant thing. The vinegar is good, too.


Frank's has one of the most refined atmospheres in all of Mountain View. It's super friendly, accommodating long conversations with the staff, basketball on the TVs, and a slightly seedy bar as the entrance.


Frank prepares barbecue well. Nothing was over- or undercooked. The strong smoke flavor penetrated all the meats. Unfortunately, the quality of the materials seemed middling: neither the ribs nor the chicken had particularly resonant meat flavor. The brisket is better -- maybe that will be the last part of the cow from which flavor is removed. I think, in fact, that Frank would do well with a brace of good quail or with pork ribs that tasted like something.

Francesca's and Uncle Frank's, 2135 Old Middlefield, Mountain View