In September, following up on the lead in Joe Kimball's Star Trib article, I posted about Pastor Luches Hamilton and his Friday grilling outide his church on St. Paul's East Side. (post linked below).
I had some time to kill over lunch today so I decided to see if the grilling had resumed for the season. To my dismay, there was no grill in sight as I pulled up 7th Street. But....
As I passed by, I noticed a neon-colored sandwich board on the sidewalk with the glorious letters BBQ across the top. I doubled up the back alley to see if maybe he didn't move the grilling operation out back, but nothing there.
As it turns out (and I have since found out was mentioned by Joe in a followup Star Trib blurb), Pastor Hamilton has opened up a tiny takeout and catering operation next to the church. (With 4 tables for two and a pew for waiting inside)
I wasn't intending to eat, just scope out the summer grill, but I couldn't resist a half rack, side of jo jo potatoes, beans and greens.
I have to say, I'm always a little leery when there's no evidence of a smoker or wood burning near a BBQ place. But however they manage it, the ribs were great -- pink in the right places/crispy brown in the other, fall-off-the-bone, nicely seasoned and smoky. I DO know from talking to him last year that Pastor carefully smokes and seasons the meat with care. Pastor's sauce, which you can buy in jars on-site and in several area supermarkets, is a superb complement. Overall, ribs as good as you can get around these parts.
The sides were fine but nothing to write home about. That said, I don't care about sides. Just give me good, proper meat...and lots of it.
Menu, which I will explore extensively includes rib tips, chicken, brisket, boneless pork shoulder, broasted chicken, wings and catfish and walleye (served on Friday and Saturday). They also have specials (I noticed beef ribs on the menu and maybe some sandwiches).
I was told Pastor might grill out on Saturdays now, but the person working didn't seem to be too sure.
Great BBQ for a greater cause in a neighborhood which can use a little extra show of support with the recent event just up the street. (This is not a "dangerous" or "seedy" neighborhood if you're from out of town or one of those people that worries about those things).
Pastor Hamilton's Bar-B-Que
1150 E. 7th Street
Tues-Thurs: 11am - 9pm
Friday-Sat: 11am - 10pm
closed Sun and Mon