Well after reading yet another bad review of the Dinosaur, this one in the New York Times, I really feel the need to put in my two cents. Clearly these New York restaurant reviewers just don't get it. Forget about the Village Voice review too - that guy should be sued for libel for insinuating that they don't even smoke the food there. The Voice reviewer claims to be some Barbeque aficionado, yet one taste of the food at Dinosaur would have told him how expertly they do the smoking there. And if he wasn't sure they smoked the food there, all he had to do is ask. That's what any responsible journalist would have done. The New York Times reviewer seemed more interested in the writing on the menu and the bathroom walls than in the food. These guys, and girls in the case of the NY Times, just clearly have an axe to grind.
The food at Dinosaur is excellent - end of story. I know everyone is a Barbeque expert and has their favorites, and I'm not going to sit here and tear down other Barbeque places in New York. Most of them are good, and shine in certain areas. Blue Smoke, Pearsons, Daisy Mays, Biscuit, and others all have some damn good food to offer. Enough of this BS myth that there is no good Barbeque in New York. I for one am damn happy after all these years to have not only one good BBQ place, but a selection of good BBQ places!
In my opinion, Dinosaur has by far by far the most flavorful pork in the city. The pulled pork actually has a great smokey flavor - something that can't be found at a lot of places. Imagine that - pulled pork that actually tastes like it came out of a smoker. It is the best damn pulled pork in the city, hands down, and some of the best pulled pork I've had anywhere. The ribs are excellent too - as good as I've had North or South. No sauce glopped on, not over spice-rubbed - nice finish on the outside, meat comes nicely off the bone without totally falling apart. Sides are good, Spiced Shrimp great, the chicken moist and smokey, desserts great - get the Butterscotch pudding if they have it. All in all, in my opinion, Dinosaur is the best BBQ right now the city has to offer.
The staff there is simply a cut above as well. They are the damn friendliest people I have ever seen in a New York restaurant - many are from Rochester and Syracuse, where the Dinosaur originated. There is one other ingredient that makes good Barbeque - heart and soul (okay - that's two ingredients), and the Dino staff has plenty of both. They really make you feel at home.
As for those reviewers spreading their negative vibes throughout the city, they don't represent my New York. Let them stick to the latest Tapas Bars and French Bistros on the Lower East Side, and let them continue to cut down and insult the hard work of decent and friendly people like the ones that work at Dinosaur. And one day these mean spirited little nobodies will get what's coming to them - what goes around comes around.