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Best ribs in Orlando

frienetic Jan 16, 2006 12:28 PM

Where can I find absolutely the best baby back ribs in the Orlando area. The kind that stands on it's own, just meat and rub, with no need for sauce. Like any chowhound with a mission, I'm willing to drive a bit, just short of driving to Memphis or something ;)

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  1. b
    Bob Mervine RE: frienetic Jan 17, 2006 05:14 AM

    I'd send you to Blackwater Barbecue on S. Orange Ave. They are next door to Le Coq Au Vin.
    Opened a couple of years ago by guys who cook on the bbq circuit. First rate ribs -- no need for sauce, of which theirs is too sweet for my taste anyway.

    I also like Uncle Jones on 436, just west of 17-92 in a little old house on the south side of the road. Although truthfully, I don't know if he sells baby backs.
    Don't bother to eat in. Other than the cornbread and the collards, nothing else is outstanding -- well, maybe the pie.
    Just get a rack to go. Guarantee you'll be tossin' bones out the window on the way home.


    6 Replies
    1. re: Bob Mervine
      RibDog RE: Bob Mervine Jan 17, 2006 08:57 AM

      I was going to suggest Blackwater's also. Good choice Bob.


      1. re: Bob Mervine
        KCRibsHeaven RE: Bob Mervine Feb 18, 2006 03:34 AM

        Keller's in Orlando has some good ribs...one location is on University and Goldenrod in the Winn-Dixie Plaza...O'Boys in Winter Park very good...not overly impressed with Bubaloo's...or however you spell it...

        1. re: Bob Mervine
          paul RE: Bob Mervine May 20, 2006 02:37 PM

          these are the best fucin ribs i ever tasted

          1. re: paul
            Bob Mervine RE: paul Aug 27, 2006 01:38 PM

            Must add to this thread, which didn't get much response to begin with, I see.

            Made a third (or fourth, I forget) vist to a tiny hole in the wall last night that does some wonderful 'cue. Called "It's a Secret," it is hidden in a small strip mall north of Curry Ford Road on the east side of Bumby, just past the corner gas station.

            1427 S Bumby Ave # E
            Orlando, FL 32806
            (407) 898-1833

            The food is obviously prepared elsewhere, as there's no sign of a smoker -- or any cooking apparatus besides a microwave (to heat the sides).
            It's a one-lady operation. You order and she cuts and packages, There are seats, but I watched 5 orders go out the door for 1 that ate in.
            She does half and whole slab spare ribs, (no baby backs), barbecue and Caribbean chicken, sliced pork, chopped beef, sausage and rib tips. Her Mac 'n cheese is gone by early afternoon, but don't despair, the collards are just as tasty.
            She also bakes pies of almost any variety - however I've never tried one.
            No alcohol.
            It's plain and simple, but the food is awesome. Ribs lean and meaty, with enough fat left to be both crisp and juicy. Caribbean chicken is chopped into bite sized portions, all dark meat, and needs no sauce. The rub has a relationship to the tastes in the sauce, tangy and fruity without being too strong. An accent for the tender, moist chicken.
            She does a tomato-based sweet sauce that has some flavors of the islands, clove, allspice, maybe cardamom with a noticable fruit component -- more than apple cider vinegar would add -- the fruit is definitely in the sauce. Applesauce, maybe?
            She won't say a word about it. That's where the place's name comes from. She does mild and hot variations.
            The hot isn't very, but I add some heat with Cholula, a carrot-based Mexican hot sauce that doesn't disturb the flavor very much. Or I add a dried chili blend from my garden if I want to make it really hot.

            Anyway, a hidden barbecue treasure In Orlando, on the south side, that deserves more attention and at least a stop to try it.


          2. re: Bob Mervine
            cherylp3 RE: Bob Mervine Aug 27, 2006 02:58 PM

            I'd recommend against uncle jones, According to eat drink and be weary on one of the local news sites - They keep getting closed for roaches.

            Although its not open yet, Has anyone tried Shane's Rib Shack?

            1. re: cherylp3
              Bob Mervine RE: cherylp3 Aug 28, 2006 12:32 AM

              I really believe that segment does more restaurants a disservice than any help it provides to consumers.

              That said, I get my ribs to go from Uncle Jones.


          3. m
            mountdorahound RE: frienetic Aug 28, 2006 01:18 PM

            Lake county has several good cue joints. I know uncle jones and lake county can stand and surpass. If you like sweet barbq, try The Damn Smoker on Hwy 19 north of eustis. Good homemade potato salad.
            If you like Hot mustard sauce, try king's in eustis. This is a eustis barbq tradition.Don't leave your keys in your car and roll up the windows.
            Further on up the road north of umatilla on hwy 19 is the Old crow Barbq. This is real home smoked barbq at it's best. Fall off the bone Good!

            1 Reply
            1. re: mountdorahound
              Bob Mervine RE: mountdorahound Aug 29, 2006 03:20 AM

              I spent two years in Leesburg. The places you mentioned have opened since I moved on,
              However the only memorable 'cue from my days there was at:
              BC's General Store
              8730 County Road 48
              Yalaha, FL 34797
              Phone: (352) 324-3730

              Country store atmosphere and great pork and sauce.
              Most othe rest of it, even Jack's near Clermont, was little more than ordinary.
              Sounds like I need to do some updating.


            2. c
              clanlamond RE: frienetic Feb 14, 2007 10:28 AM

              I agree!! King's is a tradition and if you like mustard based 'Cue it very good. BC's in Yalaha is second best but believe it or not the best ribs are at Quarter Decks in Dona Vista (Hwy 19 between Umatilla and Eustis). Yes it's a fish place, but more people have told me how good their baby backs are.

              1. hitachino RE: frienetic Feb 14, 2007 12:56 PM

                i know you asked for orlando, but since everyone else is talking lake county ;) --- i've not eaten at the great-sounding places listed so i can't compare, but sugarboo's in mount dora is AWESOME. (only open on fri sat and sun) i've had chicken, ribs and pork. i'm very picky with my BBQ and they do it right, imho.

                it's only take out (and it's in a poorer area) but you can call ahead for the drive thru then eat in the park of downtown mount dora or back at your B&B / hotel.


                1. Bob Mervine RE: frienetic Feb 14, 2007 04:54 PM

                  BCs is fabulous, but they are only open intermittently, so I strongly recommend a call ahead to make sure the ladies will be there.

                  BTW, why the hang up on baby backs? IMHO, they aren't always the best. Don't hold up as well low and slow, vendors slip in substandard quality because the meat is more marbled and I like the texture of the St. Louis style rib better.

                  Anyway, Sugar boo's also has a great rep, but haven't tried them lately. I have eaten at Quarter Decks, but not the ribs. Worth a try.


                  1 Reply
                  1. re: Bob Mervine
                    frienetic RE: Bob Mervine Feb 15, 2007 06:17 AM

                    Well I wasn't really hung up on baby back, I was just asking mainly asking and as you can see it was over a year ago. I agree they don't hold up as well and I find that it's a lot easier to mess up. But when they are spot on, I just can't resist.

                  2. k
                    kimocorb RE: frienetic Feb 15, 2007 12:17 PM

                    Peeble's BBQ in Auberndale, you add the sauce afterwards. The atmosphere is a true rib shack.

                    1. d
                      dsbsnag RE: frienetic Mar 12, 2007 05:36 AM

                      So does anyone know what happened to "It's A Secret". I went by the other night to get my fix and they were gone. I noticed a couple of weeks ago they looked like they weren't there but I still saw the sign so I thought all was well. But, last night I pulled into the parking lot and its definitely no longer there.

                      2 Replies
                      1. re: dsbsnag
                        Bob Mervine RE: dsbsnag Mar 12, 2007 05:33 PM

                        She closed about two months ago. Not sure if the neighborhood didn't appreciate her food, or whether the overhead just wore her down.

                        She also had a pretty good cake and pie business going out of there. I've got so feelers out trying to find her -- I suspect she'll turn up somewhere else.

                        What's funny was I never cared much for her sauce one way or the other, but the way she spiced the ribs and especialy the chicken -- I liked the jerk chicken even better than the barbecue -- was what kept me coming back.


                        1. re: Bob Mervine
                          mountdorahound RE: Bob Mervine May 30, 2007 06:50 AM

                          I recently had Jerk Chicken at a Jamaican joint in lauderdale and It tasted just like bbq chicken on the grill when you slightly burn the sauce on the chicken. Then they said they put "jerk gravy" on top. It tasted just like Pat's bbq sauce.(not really,,but it was similar) I was suprised how much it tasted like northern bbq chicken.

                      2. t
                        trey a RE: frienetic May 26, 2007 01:06 PM

                        The best places for ribs in Lake county are The Damn Smoker (they use a dry rub and the ribs are very big and meaty, fall off the bone tender), BC's Country Store ( their ribs are smaller and don't have a dry rub on them, but are equally as tender), Kings in Eustis is overrated anymore (their ribs are tiny with very little meat on them but are tasty with the mustard sauce), Sugarboo's is good if you get them on the right night( some nights they are a bit tough and they tend to run out early. I grew up in Eustis and have been eating these ribs since i was born. These are the best places for ribs in North Lake County. The order I listed them in is the order by which I rate them. Jack's BBQ in Clermont has great pork and beef sandwiches but their ribs are bit tough and they cut the tips off and make you by them sperately( their rare beef sandwich is the best you will find anywhere, also try their baked beans they are the best I have ever had). This is straight from a lake county boy.

                        1. j
                          Jk73072 RE: frienetic Jul 19, 2007 06:23 PM

                          Not sure if you are looking for a particular meat but, Shane's Rib Shack just opened in Metro West. Shane's only serves baby backs. They have great sides and are willing to make thier ribs and even chopped pork with no sauce. However, they do have a great sauce not overly sweet but not tangy. They also have a spicy and a hot that are decent too.
                          They are on the corner of Arnold Palmer and Kirkman in a shopping plaza. There is a WaMU bank and Fed Ex in the same plaza.
                          Best of luck in you quest for ribs! Give Shane's a try for dine in or take out and enjoy!


                          3 Replies
                          1. re: Jk73072
                            Big Bad Voodoo Lou RE: Jk73072 Jul 19, 2007 09:02 PM

                            I've seen a Shane's Rib Shack sign on 17-92 in Maitland, and another in Uptown Altamonte, but it didn't look like either location was open yet. I've been very curious about trying them, though!

                            Ah, the official website ( http://www.shanesribshack.com/locatio... ) says the Altamonte one is open, and the Maitland one is coming soon. I will check them out for sure.

                            1. re: Big Bad Voodoo Lou
                              Bob Mervine RE: Big Bad Voodoo Lou Jul 20, 2007 05:36 PM

                              There's also one near Kissimmee . . .at The Loop.


                              1. re: Bob Mervine
                                Jk73072 RE: Bob Mervine Jul 29, 2007 04:49 PM

                                Shane's in Maitland is now open according to thier website. It also says one is coming in Lakeland and one near the Florida Mall. I have noticed that many always seem dark. I think it is the lighting in the restaurant and part of the team to make it feel more "barn-like" or "redneckish". I noticed many of the hours are listed on the restaurant.

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