Big Papi's further review
After reading GVDub's review of Big Papi's, and living maybe 15 minutes away I went there yesterday for lunch. The old Atlas Sausage symbol is indeed still in place, but now sports the three magic letters BBQ in bright yellow. The smoker was out in front doing its thing-how they get away with it is beyond me, but hey-and I went inside to a look-alike good old fashioned East Carolina Q joint, just like GVDub described. Not being a rib fan I had a chopped pork sandwich, with slaw and beans. It came in a paper mache molded tray, with the pork mounded on each half of a sesame seeded burger bun. The pork was out of this world, wonderfully charred on the edges, the meat just a bit pink, fabulous aroma, wonderful taste. They had put their sauce-very mild- on top of each mound, and I wish they hadn't because I found the sauce wanting.The slaw was perfect-slightly sweet, rough cut, slightly creamy. I found the beans very ordinary, but I didn't put on any hot sauce to spike it like GVDub did, and maybe that was the difference. I had a nice chat with the owner and asked him if I could bring my own sauce next time, and he encouraged me to do that, so I will. Going to bring both a cider vinegar based and a dijon flavored vinegar based sauce, and order some pork ribs and hot links as well, because if they are anything like the chopped pork, I am a new rib and link convert. Bib Papi's is on Burbank Blvd, 1 block east of Cahuenga. Just look for the big sausage
As I noted, Big Papi's sauce is more Memphis than Carolina, though I'm fond of their spicy sauce for ribs. I haven't tried their chopped pork sandwich yet, as we tend to get by there later in the day, when pickings are scarcer (yesterday afternoon, we were by at about 3 and they'd had a rush, so rib tips, a few beef ribs, chicken, and hot links were all that were available). I may take a couple of Carolina finishing sauces over to Big Papi's, though, next time we roll by there (having it only a few blocks from the house is _dangerous_).
Just about the only thing I fire my own pit up for is pulled pork, Carolina-style, and I rarely have the 14 hours needed to do a few pork shoulders (because it's not worth the hassle if you're not doing a half dozen or so). L.A. doesn't have a lot of Carolina 'Q' around, though, so it's been up to me to roll my own up to this point. The owner at Big Papi's tells me he's wanting to add a couple more pits to increase his capacity, though, and we'll see what happens.