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Jul 21, 2004 02:10 PM


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Is there a good barbeque pit in Toronto?

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  1. Everyone talks about Phil's on college, near Chiado (mmmmmmm, Chiado). It's all right, but not amazing.

    2 Replies
    1. re: John

      Good Barbeque in Toronto is hard to find.
      How about a drive to Paris, Ontario for some pretty good barbeque?

      Camp31 Barbeque
      HWY 403 past Brantford
      North on Paris Rd; just before Dundas St on your left.


      1. re: John

        I agree, Phil's is OK but not spectacular.
        I just returned from a huge roadtrip to Memphis and down through the Mississippi Delta and into Louisiana. Eating BQQ all the way. Memphis is simply awesome for BBQ, I really can't go back to Phil's now.
        I will try the place near Paris mentioned in this thread.

      2. No!
        See multiple earlier threads.

        1. The only place to get decent BBQ is south of the border. And I mean WAY south. Texas, Alabama, Georgia, Mississippi, Missouri, Carolina...

          Failing that, make your way to the Rotary Ribfests which tours around Southern Ontario all summer and into the fall. The next one is the Scarborough Ribfest which is next weekend (July 30 - Aug 2). And when you go, avoid the Canadian places. Look for awards signs and trophies from American contests where the competition is tougher.

          Camp 31 is the best of the bunch that does the Rotary circuit. As another post explained, they do have a location in Ontario but it's quite a drive from town. Read about them at http://www.camp31.com

          Link: http://scarboroughribfest.com/home.html

          4 Replies
          1. re: TexSquared
            Strongly Disagree

            I've been to several rib-fests, and to tell people NOT to try the Canadian fare is just sad.

            The Purple Pig (Burlington Rib-Fests) from Orillia, Ontario serves up one of the better ribs I've tried.

            Keep your minds OPEN. Don't let the longest lines fool you.

            1. re: Strongly Disagree

              If you want southern style BBQ why not go to those who are from the South? [in a similar vein, would you go to a Greek place to get Chinese?] I have tried Purple Pig, at the CNE Food Bldg, actually, and I will admit that they impressed me with their approximation of authentic. No complaints about them at all. OTOH, I have tried RD's BBQ and Blues which, curiously, considers themselves authentic but never enters any contests, and theirs is absolute CRAP and I would never return. Meanwhile, Camp 31 is a long drive away in Paris, and the other American ribbers at the fests don't have any locations close either. You can go to Purple Pig anytime, they're right downtown and they're also at the CNE, during which they will definitely get my business. You can't just go to Gator or Bibbs or Camp 31. So if you're at the ribfests, might as well have them and consider yourself having saved yourself gasoline/airfare.

              Extrapolating further from your post, line length had nothing to do with what I said originally. I was at the Scarborough Ribfest on Friday and in fact some of the Canadian places had longer lineups than some of the Americans. It was not a case of the U.S. guys getting all the business. If anything, I found the lines longest at the booths closest to the entrance/exit. They did make it a rather lengthy hike from parking lot to food, so few people wanted to go to the booths at the far end of the compound. I felt sorry for the ribbers (from either country) who got stuck out there, I hope they get better locations at the next tour stop to compensate.

              1. re: TexSquared

                gotta disagree about not being able to find good 'cue anywhere but in the south. it's not like it requires the climate or anything specific to Southern geography - if somebody in Ontario gets a pit/smoker and smokes that meat properly (and rub, and sauce, etc), you'll have good bbq. i lived in boston for the past 5 years and there was some decent bbq to be had there. i now live in north carolina and there's actually some bad bbq to be had. having said that, i haven't had good bbq in toronto, but that don't mean it can't be done.

            2. re: TexSquared

              if you ever go check out the ribfests in toronto-london area like larry said re(1) forget the canadian places! over the past 9 years I've been to a lot of ribfests and I've tried everyones ribs and i am going to say by order from greatest to worst for who has good ribs.....kentucky smokehouse (kentucky),fire island bbq (new york) texas flame (texas) gator bbq (paris,ont) ol'camp 31(alabama) so there you have it these are my recomondations for good and bad ribs