Dinosaur BBQ, a Syracuse NY based blues 'n BBQ restaurant, has just announced plans to open a Manhattan location. Their original Syracuse location has good live local and national blues acts almost every night and their more recently opened Rochester location has followed suit.
IMHO their ribs are a trifle overrated but it is a good smoky Q and their pulled pork is just about the best you'll ever try anywhere. The Syracuse location is just way too crowded for my taste but I do get takeout from them on occasion now that I'm living in the 'cuse again.
To put the level of their success into perspective..... I attempted to go there this afternoon with some friends who are visiting - at 3 PM in the afternoon on a Saturday (when there was nothing going on in downtown Syracuse and every other restaurant and bar was empty)..... there was a ONE HOUR wait for a table. Although I haven't tried all the usual suspects in NYC, I suspect that they'll blow away Virgil's, Pearson's, Tenesee Mountain and anyone else in NYC. I haven't tried Blue Smoke but think that the Dino will equal them on some dishes and fall short on a few others but come in at a far lower price tag in the process.
Their signature ambiance is best described as biker bar chic - think Hogs 'n Heifers with no girls dancing on the bartop but plenty of good musice and Q.
Co-owner John Stage is a native of NYC (Brooklyn if I recall correctly), currently has an aprtment in Manhattan and will be on site full time to run the operation (a very good thing - absentee ownership seems to be the major downfall of expansions).
Location is to be "west Harlem" at or around the intersectrion of 12th and 131st. IMHO they do a darn good job for a northeastern BBQ restaurant - not fantastic but they seem to get plenty of raves in occasional post both here and on a few other food related boards.