Chowhound Presents: Table Talk with Yotam Ottolenghi and Helen Goh of Sweet: Desserts from London's Ottolenghi | Ask Your Questions Now ›

Restaurants & Bars

Southwest BBQ Burgers Reno

The Pit BBQ and Burgers, Reno


Restaurants & Bars 11

The Pit BBQ and Burgers, Reno

janetofreno | Sep 14, 2013 10:29 PM

I hesitated to write this review, as this new place has only been open a few weeks and obviously has a few kinks to work out. OTOH, I'm still thinking about my meal there last night, so I will share.

The Pit is in a small strip mall on Clear Acre Lane just north of McCarran (right off the 395). It isn't much to look at: a few too-close tables and a couple of arcade games; but I suspect many customers will choose to do takeout (as did I).

I discovered the Pit when I drove into the strip mall to use my bank's ATM there....and was hit with a heavenly odor coming from their parking lot smoker. I then noticed their "Just opened" sign and knew where my dinner was coming from.

I walked in to find a line to order at the counter, and most of the tables full. I took that to be a good sign. Unfortunately when I got to the front I was disappointed (devastated, more like:-) to learn that they had just run out of ribs (at 6 oclock on a Friday night!) The only ribs to be had were in the smoker, and they wouldn't be ready until the morning (at least we know they take their time to make them...). So I settled for a pulled pork "lunch special" (available all day), and an order of onion rings (I always try the onion rings at any new place that makes them; part of a personal quest for the perfect rings...).

My disappointment at not having ribs disappeared at the first bite of that pulled pork. Someone at The Pit knows how to smoke meat. Tender and juicy and a perfect smoked flavor. I had gotten my sauce on the side, and I think I only used it as a dip for the onion rings. (just as well, it was only average)....The pork needed no sauce. The rings were also some of the best I've had lately: freshly made from huge and sweet onions (Walla Walla maybe?) and with a tasty not-to-thick batter that didn't come off with the first bite. My side of hot-and-spicy coleslaw was also very good: crunchy cabbage with a vinegar dressing and julienned jalapenos for the "spicy" (and maybe a touch of cilantro as well; they make a regular coleslaw as well, and have the usual choices of potato salad etc for sides). Probably the only disappointment of the meal was the corn bread: it was ok but just ok, and unlike the rest of the meal did not taste like it had been made on the spot....

I have no idea if the burgers are any good; they have a lot on the menu. And this might be my one true complaint about the place; they seem to be trying to be all things to all people (Hug High is right across the street; maybe they are trying to attract the lunch crowd). OTOH, if the onion rings are any indication, those burgers might be worth it. As for me, I'll be back and hoping for ribs. Now, if only they would add links to the menu.

I say check it out. But don't eat all the ribs until I've had a chance to try them:-). My dinner was about 15 dollars, including tip - but no drink.. The Lunch Special at around 6 or 7 dollars is a good deal: a half pound of meat, choice of sides, and cornbread.

Want to stay up to date with this post?

Recommended From Chowhound