Buz and Ned's BBQ - Richmond Report
I didn't travel to Richmond, VA from Washington, DC just to have Buz and Ned's BBQ. But if I did, I would not have been disappointed.
They offer plenty of items I didn't try, like chicken, beef, bison, and baby back pork ribs. But since I don't consider any of those to be BBQ (!), I stuck with the meaty pork ribs (they call them spare ribs) and the pulled pork.
The ribs are worth a pilgrimage. There are so many qualities that make up great BBQ, it always seems I have to compromise. But not with these. Smoky, pink, tender, strong pork flavor, tasty saucing, crusty, served hot. They are given a final basting and grilled when you order them and that's it. No extra sauce, no nothing. Just great BBQ.
With the ribs I enjoyed truly great mac and cheese (a MUST ORDER), and greens that were very rich, fatty, and delicious. Cinnamon apples were just as expected.
The pulled pork is ok, but nothing to shout about. It is pulled and then either not chopped, or very coasely, and lightly sauced and heated. The pieces are a bit large and unwieldy, not much pork flavor, and the extrerior parts are not crunchy. I don't get the idea of saucing this before serving, unless they believe the pork is not moist or flavorful enough on its own. If I lived nearby, I would only order this occasionally.
My husband and I love Buz and Ned's. The ribs are to die for and glad you got the greens and mac & cheese. The jalapeno corn fries are a great appetizer. And they make their own lemonade and limeade, so the hard lemonade and maragaritas are both exceptional. My husband also loves the beef ribs, which are seasoned differently from the pork.
Having grown up on the VA/NC border, I had always been dissapointed in Richmond's BBQ, that is, until I finally went to Buz and Neds. Great Q and a terrific beer selection. I just wish they'd expand -- their tight quarters certainly will limit their business, But that's probably a "small" part of their appeal -- it seems the best Q joints are the very smallest.