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Jul 26, 2008 09:38 PM

Oakland: New barbeque on International - Double D

Anyone tried this new place right near the lake?

I didn't stop because I was sooo full from my morning chowing elsewhere. There was an drum bbq out front.

Elsewhere on the web it mentions that the owner had a mobile grill and traveled around. He supposedly has won a few bbq contests. Seems the gas situation has him anchored at the Oakland shop. From this link ...

"A fairly new Oakland BBQ restaurant with an apparently experienced competition Q cook at the helm"

Cash only from what I read. Prices seem reasonable running from $5 to $18 tops.

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  1. i stopped by once. unfortunately, it wasn't very good. the ribs weren't grilled or smoked. just boiled and covered in sauce. the brisket was the same. The homemade sausages though were interesting. flavor was good, but slightly undercooked. the casing was a bit thick though. I would probably go back to give the sausages another try, but first impression on the ribs and brisket was not good.

    1. I was in East Bay for a moment this week, driving out of Oakland Airport. Passed Double D, screeched on brakes 'cuz it looked good, and went in (even though I was headed to lunch at the time). Brisket was near-horrid, tasted like it had been frozen...maybe more than once.

      But the tri-tip, though, was absolutely stellar. Better than Flint's (and I'm a devotee). That's what they were cooking at the moment.

      So if you go, either ask what they're cooking at the moment, and/or get the tri-tip.

      I liked their chili, too. Good-not-great, but honest. And their barbecue sauce is a lot like Flint's, maybe just a tad less spice.

      It's poor biz practice to sell lots of really horrible things, I hope they don't leave too many customers feeling burned, but this is a chowhound point of light if you'll stick to the meat-of-the-moment.

      6 Replies
      1. re: Jim Leff

        Did you happen to catch the hours? Every time I drive by it looks closed.

        1. re: nicedragonboy

          They were closed mon/tues/wed this week for some reason. you can give them a call at 510-228-7000

          1. re: Jim Leff

            Closed seven days now. It is replaced by something Vietnamese but not food-related AFAIK ... can't read Vietnamese

            1. re: rworange

              Yelp says Double D BBQ moved to 1240 1st Ave, off of Lake Merritt. Or is this the old location? It's on my list to check out but just never got around to it.

              1. re: ML8000

                No. It was on International Ave. Thanks for the update. Hope the new location works out better. It looks way better and there is parking. Seems they added a bbq truck and have ambitions for franchising.

              2. re: rworange

                yeah, that's the old location. The new spot is just around the corner before you turn onto International. I believe it's the former location of a Casper's Hotdog.

        2. I took a look into Double D while walking to International. It was closed due to injury, but the owner was hobbling around and we had a long chat. He says he will reopen Thurs. the 4th and plans changes - to open for breakfast hours and to add burgers, shakes and fries.

          4 Replies
          1. re: Kayde

            I knew there was something I forgot to report.

            They re-opened and have a board with the special of the day. On my visit that meant cheesesteak.

            A friend who lives nearby and has stopped there a few times says the brisket is the only worthwhile item and all the sides suck. He liked the bbq sauce but thinks they use too much.

            Anyway, on my visit I got the pork ribs since they were out of brisket.The only sides left were cole slaw and beans and I was told the beans are straight from a can. I believe he said Heinz.

            The slaw was inedible. They really should have called it mayonaise with a teaspoon of cabbage. Two slices of bbq baloon bread come with the meal

            The prices were rock bottom. You can get a small dinner with one side for $7.

            Those were the largest pork ribs I have ever seen in my life outside of the Flintstones. They were mastadon-sized. At that price, we are not talking top-quality pork and on the fatty side. The small size is three ribs, but it was the end of the day so I got four. After two, I was totally stuffed ... and I didn't get the bread and only had a forkful of the slaw.

            As I always do, I asked for the sauce on the side. I liked the tomato-based sauce with a slight kick and they help cut some of the fat on the fries. It went well with the ribs.

            However they were moist (with all that fat, dry ribs would have been impossible) and they were nicely smoked. Despite washing my hands with soap and water, the next morning my fingers still had a lingering aroma of smoke.

            The new place isn't that far from the old location, about a block away. It is just weirde to get to by car. You need to go down to 12th and hook onto that part of first which is one way.

            New new place is really cheery and sunny. There are two counters with low stools and a table tucked in a corner. The owner is a really nice guy.

            They have breakfast for $5.

            My guess is the new location has the right kitchen and room to smoke outdoors. He seems to have settled in finally ... but how much can you tell from one visit.

            1. re: rworange

              Noting again, for anyone thinking of trying this place: Anything but the meat straight out of today's smoker is likely to be shockingly worthless.

              But if they're smoking it today (and you KNOW it's not just reheated gunk), you may be made as deliriously happy as me and my party, which was downright reverent.

              I'd go around to the smoker and talk to the dude and ask what he's working on at the moment.

              1. re: Jim Leff

                I hope there are more Chowhound reports.

                Actually I did ask what was smoked that day on your advice. He said he started the ribs on the smoker at 2 am that day. I don't know how he was keeping the ribs warm, but they definately were not reheated.

                I think the busines is different now in the new place. The friend who goes there says the brisket is usually sold out because is the best item. Yelpers mention it is best to get there early as they sell out quickly.

                So hopefully he has a better feel for demand and there isn't much leftover meat.

                I also think that the often repeated complaint on Yelp that the ribs are boiled and not smoked is due to the fact that they are usually served sauced. It would be very easy to come to a wrong conclusion. Ordering the sauce on the side it was really clear these were long smoked.

                1. re: rworange

                  I think they'll always serve lots of bad stuff. People don't suddenly raise standards. You're born with standards or your not.

                  But this sort of situation doesn't discourage me. I approach restaurants from the standpoint that they're all trying to prevent me from eating the best thing. So it's all strategy.

                  Great deliciousness is never an accident; any eatery that can serve me 'cue of the quality I enjoyed that one day is a place I'll continuously aim to strategize for more success, and I'm willing to endure ample duds en route....

          2. I started a new thread since the restaurant isn't on International anymore:

            Double D BBQ
            1240 1st Ave, Oakland, CA 94606

            1 Reply
            1. re: abstractpoet

              I've since been by the new location twice now. And they've changed my mind about their meats and sauce. tender meats, great beef brisket, though could use a bit more smoke. love their links, sauce is good, tangy vinegary with medium slow buildup heat to it.