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Jun 18, 2005 10:42 PM

BBQ in and around Lakeland

  • c

I will be in Lakeland for a couple of days. Are there any "don't miss" bbq spots in the area?

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    1. re: Beachbum

      drbbq will not be in Lakeland,when you are.

      From the FBA site, spread out and check Auburndale,Brandon,Tampa.


      1. re: Tom-Fl

        I don't think I mentioned when I will be in Lakeland. Who/where is drbbq and when will he be there.

        1. re: Chuck B

          Dr BBQ is also known as Ray Lampe. He is not there now and will not be back until the fall. Even then, I would highly doubt he will be vending as he has before. He is on the road for the summer going to que contests and promoting his new book. You can find it on Amazon. You can also find his schedule on his website:

          I know Ray well because he was kind enough to let me join him at some competitions in which I learned a great deal from him.


          1. re: RibDog

            Does he have a restaurant?

            1. re: Chuck B

              No, he does not. He has a vending trailer that he used to open in Lakeland in the winter time while he was at home.


          2. re: Chuck B

            DrBBQ (Ray Lampe) is an expert in BBQ. He teaches classes on the proper methods of barbecue from selecting the meat to preparing and cooking the meat. He has a new book entitled "Dr. BBQ's Bigtime Barbecue Cookbook" which is one of the best books on BBQ I've read. If you're a BBQ enthusiast, I'd suggest joining the Florida Barbecue Association and attending some FBA contests. Membership is only $25 a year and includes a subscription to the National Barbecue News which has lots of good info. You might also want to visit the BBQ Forum and for message boards where you can learn many things.


            1. re: Chuck B

              Great BBQ in Lakeland definetly has to be Garls BBQ
              the bbq is great, the sides are yummy and on Fri and Sat night they do steaks. The steaks simply can not be beat.

        2. This week's issue of the Weekly Planet has a feature story on BBQ on Highway 301..not real close to Lakeland but some interesting spots listed....most I've never heard of. It's the food issue - for the BBQ-hound, a good, new listing of places to try. Winesmoke.

          2 Replies
          1. re: Winesmoke

            I'm from out of the area but I looked it up on the net. Interesting but I may want to question someone who thinks the best sandwich is from a crock pot w/liquid smoke.
            Thanks for the post.

            1. re: Chuck B

              That was the one problem with that article. Trust me when I say that Winesmoke knows BBQ. It's just that there are not that many good places around and it was a quick guide to q on 301.

              If it were me, I would either go over to First Choice BBQ in Brandon or Jimbo's on 92 heading north out of Lakeland. But Peebles in Auburndale is definitely a Chowhound type of place. It may not always be the best que but the atmosphere makes up for it.


          2. -Peebles (503 Dixie Hwy in Auburndale) -- authentic, nothin' fancy at all but does BBQ right -- ribs, pulled pork, chicken, big ups
            -Garls -- 8121 US Hwy 98 in North Lakeland
            -Curly Tails -- 330 Old Winter Haven Rd, Bartow -- an oak tree in the center of the place lends an air of casual fun -- solid
            -Bunky's Smokehouse BBQ -- 201 E Hinson Ave in Haines City -- solid work here
            -Happy Jack's BBQ -- 3151 US 98 South
            -Jumbo's Pit BBQ -- 1215 Memorial Blvd
            -Manny's Original Chophouse -- 35496 US 27 North in Haines City
            -Sonny's Real Pit Bar-B-Q -- 3611 US 98N in Lakeland and 595 N Broadway Ave in Bartow -- not great but ok for a chain