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In August, the exploration of black-owned restaurants led me to Pitt's Pig BBQ in downtown Pittsburg. Three months old at that point, the enterprise started as a BBQ catering truck and then moved into Dad's BBQ old venue. Heroic for opening in the middle of a pandemic, but judging from the steady stream of customers on a weekday, Pitt's public had discovered the skill and deliciousness on tap here.
For a two-way plate, I picked spareribs and smoked tri-tip that came with a choice of two sides for $17.68 before tax and gratuity. My first choice of side, Collard Greens, were not available this day. The head of the kitchen explained that she got into work late and her greens take time because she preps them from fresh and not frozen. I made a mental note to be sure to order the greens next time. Instead I went with the Green beans and the Baked beans, both marked on the board as "contain bacon", and paid $2.60 for an extra side of Smoked mac & cheese. A fluffy Parker house roll was the bread of the day to round out the plate, lucky me.
The smoked tri-tip did not move me though it was a bit of a curiosity to try tri-tip that's smoked instead of grilled and still pick inside. Much better were the meaty, well-seasoned St Louis trimmed spareribs with assertive smoke tones that did not need any of the sauce provided on the side. What I really liked here were the side dishes, especially the Smoked mac & cheese that I suspect actually spends some time in the pit and doesn't just use artificial smoke or smoked cheese. Pro tip: when this menu says “contains bacon”, it really means it. The soft canned green beans were shot through with a fine dice of white bacon fat as well as pieces of browned bacon softened in the juices. Likewise, the baked beans were loaded with thick cut bacon pieces too. The heavy hand with cured meat ramped up the saltiness yet made these two dishes so tasty.
My visit was on an unhealthy air quality day in the middle of Northern California's wildfire complexes. I suspect that I might enjoy this smoked repast even more when not engulfed by smoke in the air at my sidewalk table. Nevertheless, this was a very good showing and I would return to try more.
Pitt's Pig BBQ
785 Railroad Ave
Pittsburg, CA 94565
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