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Buster Rhino's Authentic Southern BBQ - Whitby

If you're ever in Whitby on a weekday, stop in for a pulled pork, pulled chicken or brisket sandwich at Buster Rhino's. They have a lunch counter operating out of their production facility with limited hours (Mon, Tues 10-3) (Wed, Thur, Fri 10-8) no weekends. They offer cafeteria style seating if you want to eat in. I've never tried their ribs but the last time I checked they offered a Friday special which was a full rack of ribs right from the smoker, a side and a pop for $13 or so (I'll have to double check). It'll be the only place you'll find a consistent BBQ product in the GTA. The BBQ will more than likely be reheated but let me say think you'll find it to be the best you'll find in the GTA.

Pick up a combo with their fries, they are excellent as well. I'm not totally sold on their salads or hushpuppies but that's a matter of personal preference...

Here's a shot of my last brisket sandwich:

http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v30...

Here's a link to their site:

http://www.busterrhinos.com/

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  1. So how do they compare against, say, Memphis Style or Camp 31?

    This is obviously a foodservice operation that caters sports bars in the GTA (which would explain the "reheated" comment -- if they're closed on weekends, if you ordered one of their products at a bar on a weekend it had to have been made on Friday and reheated 1-2 days later).

    Given that I'm in Pickering I may head over and give them a try.

    3 Replies
    1. re: TexSquared

      I've not tried either of Memphis Style or Camp 31 so I don't know how they compare.

      You have it right TexSquared, they cook throughout the week and the product is vacuum sealed into individual or bulk portions.

      When you order you're getting an individual portion of your chosen meat. As I stated in another thread, as a consumer we'd like to see food fresh from the smoker but logistically it's tough to do. What's nice about Buster Rhino's is that the food is authentic, very consistent, flavourful, and a good value. A sandwich combo is $7 plus taxes. You can barely get a fast food lunch for that and here you're getting a quality, locally produced product.

      As for the weekend closings, I am pretty sure the business runs all week long, the lunch counter is simply closed on the weekend. They also cater some festivals and events around Ontario during summer weekends...

      1. re: Dr Butcher

        interesting point is that the owner appeared on Dragons Den who seemingly loved his product (sauces and rubs) and gave him a deal which I do not think has come to fruition yet. There was an article about him and the business in the local Whitby paper. MY SO and I went for a drive to locate the business but alas discovered the counter is only open Mon through Friday

      2. re: TexSquared

        This is excellent, true low and slow barbecue. Ribs rubbed and smoked, sauce on the side if you have to. Melt in your mouth smoked pork butt - a generous serving of pulled pork on a really large fresh bun with hand sliced, vinegar & mayo coleslaw to go on top. This bears no resemblance to chain BBQ. While we've never had the pleasure of traveling through the Southern states, this is the best we've had along with Muddy's Pit BBQ catering in Peterborough, ON and the Armadillo BBQ in Woodinville, WA.

      3. Sounds interesting, so since its a production facility I assume there is all kinds of good stuff to bring home for the fridge & freezer as well? I wouldn't mind keeping some nice pulled pork handy for the winter

        6 Replies
        1. re: duckdown

          duckdown, you've got it.

          I enjoy their sauces as well (although they are tough to come by if you don't live Durham or pick it up at Costco in the summer) so if you stop in, pick up a bottle or two. They have three varieties, regular, medium and hot. I prefer the regular and medium.

          kayia1 et all, if you haven't seen the episode (season 3 episode 3, you'll need to choose the episode) you can find it here:

          http://www.cbc.ca/dragonsden/video.html

          Buster Rhino's section starts around the 9 minute mark.

          1. re: duckdown

            Hello,

            I am the owner of Buster Rhino's and yes we are also a production facility. We manufacture Southern BBQ products for the food service industry.

            Darryl Koster
            President
            Buster Rhino's Inc.

            PS. If you have any questions your more than welcome to contact me off board, I do not want to violate any policy's on this site - have read it for years and love it.

            1. re: BusterRhino

              Hi, just had the pleasure of having lunch in your facility today...had brisket sandwich hushpuppies and a coke...was wonderful...had the sandwich with just a bit of the medium Texas style sauce and if I closed my eyes would have thought I was back in Austin where I had brisket the first time (less the hush puppies)...hot bbq sauce was a nice peppery Texas style sauce, the Habanero was good in limited (ouch!) consumption...you really need a decent sign on Thickson as I had to enter off Wentworth and drove past it a few times...but other than that, You Rock dude! I always try brisket when i try a new place as to me brisket is the judging factor on how good things are. Just my rule of thumb... Combo of sandwich, hush puppies and can of pop for under $8.00....if I was hungry would have tried the pulled pork but was stuffed.

              1. re: ebay3392

                The brisket as you said is excellent at BR's, but if you liked the Brisket you have to go back and try the Ribs they are the real deal.

                I agree with everything you said BR's is the only place in the GTA where I have really enjoyed my BBQ, in my opinion his establishement is the top in the GTA right now.

                1. re: Matt H

                  Normally I would have, but going to Ribfest Fri and Sun so did not want to spoil Ribfest with something of superior quality beforehand if you know what I mean. Good thing I go to Oshawa every few months on business so will make it my regular pit stop.

                2. re: ebay3392

                  I tried the brisket sandwich and hush puppies and liked it - so I bought some brisket to take home and holy smokes was that batch ever salty - could not eat it. Kind of disappointing to have such salt variation in the same product.

            2. Cool, I called them today, they're actually open til 4PM and not 3PM during the early weekdays, so I'll go by tomorrow when I visit a buddy in Oshawa

              Looking forward to it, thanks for the tip, will report back

              What do you like there the best? pork brisket or chicken?

              3 Replies
                1. re: jayt90

                  Living in Oshawa and working downtown years ago when that place first opened up (Montreal Fries) I can absolutely attest to the fact they have extremely good poutine and steamies. Haven't been there in a couple years, think I know where I am going for lunch later this week.

                  Darryl Koster
                  President
                  Buster Rhino's Inc.

                2. re: duckdown

                  Okay DD. We seem to be on the same wavelength about ribs. Give 'em a try and let me know. I may have to venture out there.
                  The fact that it has limited hours and I'll have to reheat them at home will certainly be a strike against them though.

                  DT

                3. I picked up a take out lunch today, a brisket sandwich and a bowl of chile.
                  They were OK, but geared toward passing lunch traffic, quick and simple.
                  The brisket was smoky, lean, and well done. It is thin sliced and held on a steam table, so it is still moist. I enjoyed it, but not as much as the fresh cut, succulent Caplanski's.
                  The chile was dense, thick, with lots of ingredients (beans, corn, tomatoes, mushrooms and more). Mine was the final serving from a steam table tray, and very well cooked. Good flavour, not hot or spicy, but the meat in it was shredded and I couldn't identify it. Lots of shreds in each spoonful.
                  Next time I'm in the area, I may get take home ribs, as they can withstand the lengthy cooking.
                  I picked up a bag of Quebec charcoal lumps there, about $1/lb.

                  1. I am hoping to pass by here tonight,

                    I wonder what the deal is today on the ribs though... OP said $13 which sounds awesome but is most likely wrong

                    3 Replies
                    1. re: duckdown

                      They had a $13 rib special on today.

                      1. re: jayt90

                        will definatly try them the next time i'm in whitby

                        1. re: jayt90

                          wow, i stand corrected then, that is a sweet deal

                          sadly my friend wasn't in the area so i didn't make it down there today... but next week for sure

                          cheers

                      2. After reading the positive reviews on this site I knew we had to give this place a try. I lived in Toronto for quite a few years and have never had anything that even resembles mediocre BBQ. This place though is a major exception!

                        Our group had the Ribs, Brisket, Pulled Pork, Baked Beans and Hush Puppies.

                        The Brisket was moist, thinly sliced and was not too lean at all. You can taste the smoked flavor and I enjoyed this quite a bit. The pulled pork was also moist and was actually true pulled pork and not shaved roast pork as someone mentioned above that most restaurants in the area try to pawn off on people.

                        The sides were all very tasty, especially the baked beans, These taste like the beans I am accustomed to having back down south where I grew up. The only addition I would personally make is adding some Pork or Ham Hock to the beans, which would basically make them perfect.

                        Now saving the best for last....the Ribs. Heavy smoked flavor, perfect dry rub and only needed a little of their excellent home made sauce. These are good ribs by any standard not just the best I have had in the GTA.

                        The owner took time out to explain that his family is from South Carolina and are BBQ champions in that area. They taught him how to cook BBQ the right way and he has a respect for the art of cooking great BBQ and takes pride in doing it the right way.

                        This place is worth the drive out to Whitby, you will not regret having the best BBQ in the area Bar none!

                        1. I'm still dying to try this place

                          Whitby is just so bloody far away; and my buddy out there moved to Calgary... So I have no reason other than the food to go out that way

                          Wish they had a location in the GTA

                          1. I still have mixed feelings about the lunch counter: it's a steam table with pre-cut portions for sandwiches. This is not the kind of personal service , or cooking, that I have come to expect from Caplansky's. I respect what Buster Rhino is doing, except for the lunch counter.

                            10 Replies
                            1. re: jayt90

                              I was back today and now I understand the steam table food a lot better. As Dr Butcher says, the portions are individually vacuum packed and reheated to serving temp. on the steam table. The brisket won't be hand sliced as at Caplansky's but the fries are definitely hand made, as are the beans and chili. All the food comes from the commercial kitchen in back, and it is excellent and freshly made. The steam table is a convenient way, maybe the only way, to serve passing traffic. And when you see the location, in an industrial strip, there would be little weekend traffic.
                              This is a great place to pick up take out food, charcoal,rubs, and sauce, and even large quantities of ribs, pulled pork, and brisket for a weekend bash, as long as you can get there before they close on Friday (8PM) for the weekend.

                              1. re: jayt90

                                So still no weekend hours eh?

                                1. re: magic

                                  No, still no weekend hours. Traffic in this area is just too weak to support staying open on the weekends - Sorry.

                                  1. re: BusterRhino

                                    Oh no worries. Everyone deserves weekends off anyways. Especially people in food service.

                                    What are your hours? I’ll make it there for sure regardless.

                                    1. re: BusterRhino

                                      Darn. Only make it to Whitby on weekends for hockey-have to talk to hockey scheduler about getting games during the week.

                                      1. re: BusterRhino

                                        Coming in from MTL yesterday we really wanted to stop in Whitby for some BBQ, but we were too late with the traffic and I wasn't sure this place would be open on Thanksgiving. Looking forward to stopping in sometime soon. Can someone who's tried the place describe the sauce? Is it mustard based? Thanks.

                                        1. re: South Carolina Girl

                                          I believe he only has tomato-based sauces in varying levels of heat - I don't remember seeing the mustard-based variety there, as much as I'd love to see it. I think I had the "Hot", and I remember it being pretty good, although it's been a while and I don't remember specifics.

                                          1. re: South Carolina Girl

                                            All of BR's sauces are red (pepper based?), and I don't think mustard is a dominant flavour. They have a regular one which is slightly vinegary, a hot sauce which is medium hot (to me) and a habañero one which I've heard is insanely hot (I haven't tried it).

                                            1. re: CeeQueue

                                              I asked the proprietor about a mustard sauce, and he suggested adding mustard until you get the right taste. I tried that , with Billy Bee mustard, about 50% addition and I liked it.

                                            2. re: South Carolina Girl

                                              Hi, I was there once and was pleased with the brisket sandwich I had...the sauce was tomato based, hot was pretty darn hot...but no mustard style sauce.

                                    2. They also run a Saturday course on how to make smoked dry rub ribs which teaches you the tricks of the trade. Following the techniques taught, some fairly simple advice and a few practice efforts, excellent ribs are quite possible, even on a gas bbq. Information on the course is on the website.

                                      I shared some with the staff at school and they thought they were close to the best they've ever had. Almost as good as the ones available from Buster Rhino's.

                                      1. My first visit to Buster's and was very impressed. We bought the vacuum pack ribs to bring home and they were just excellent. Who needs Ribfests when you can go to Buster Rhinos - unless of course Buster's is one the ribbers!

                                        5 Replies
                                        1. re: Hooter1

                                          I can't wait to get out there and try it. There's a brisket sandwich calling my name. After two disappointing visits to Ribfests (Pickering and Scarborough), I really need me some good BBQ.

                                          1. re: CeeQueue

                                            This is where you should go...was there a month ago and the brisket sandwich was excellent.

                                            1. re: ebay3392

                                              much preferred the ribs to the brisket (which is still good).

                                              1. re: Chester Eleganté

                                                Product quality here is excellent, love the ribs, beans, pulled pork, pulled chicken. I thought the brisket was a little salty. A little disorganized about what they have in stock for takeout frozen. I wonder if the beans can be bought in reheatable bags because last time i went, there were not many beans left and they said they could do up a batch in about 5-10 mins. Sauce is excellent but a little pricey, I think it was approx 3.65 for a bottle.

                                            2. re: CeeQueue

                                              Finally made it out to Buster's on a Friday afternoon. Traffic was horrible, but after getting off the highway at Salem and taking Bayly the rest of the way, things got moving a bit better. I wanted to get the Friday special, but would make sure to go before the weekend rush starts next time.

                                              I'd actually just eaten a veal sandwich at Agincourt Bakery when I remember the Friday special at Buster's, so I got a large brisket to go and the Friday special of ribs with one side and a pop sort of to go as well. I got fries for my side and ate them there, since they don't tend to travel well. They were amazing. Cooked past golden, as OTFOODIE described. Very tasty and great crispiness with fluffy insides. Lightly seasoned with some kind of seasoning salt, which I thought I wouldn't like but found just right...subtle but good.

                                              I brought my ribs home and ended up eating them cold so they wouldn't get dried out by reheating. Very tasty, huge pink smoke ring, great smoky taste. They're back ribs, which aren't my favourite, and I found them a bit less meaty than I'm used to. I still want to get back and try some again and eat them there to get the true experience. Overall I thought they were really good. I used very little sauce with them because they were so flavourful.

                                              I boiled the brisket in the bag for 9 minutes, as suggested by the staffer who sold it to me. It made a delicious sandwich, but I discovered it's even better eaten on its own so you can really taste the smoky flavour. I didn't find it oversalted at all. I ate the last of it cold with my breakfast the next morning and it was even really good cold -- kind of like smoky bacon with the texture of roast beef. I definitely have to get back there for more brisket and to try some of their other sides. The server told me the baked beans aren't homemade, but have lots of stuff added to them to make them really tasty. That put me off at first, but having since read how many CHers liked them, I'll give them a try next time (if I have room after scarfing down some of those amazing fries).

                                          2. I finally got a chance to try BR, and it was worth it. I was hungry, so I ordered a brisket sandwich and a full rack of ribs with my side being fries. The brisket was good, but over-powered by the sauce (hot, but not the habenaro). I'm also used to the meat being piled higher at Caplansky's or the CSD, but this sandwich was only $5. When the ribs arrived, the aroma was fantastic. The ribs were outstanding - excellent meaty texture with the best smoky flavour I've had with ribs. These were not fatty at all, in fact I would have expected some fat. The fries were a huge pile of homemade fires cooked past golden to a tan color with excellent crispiness. (Maybe they were double-fried?) Best I've had in a long time.

                                            My only negatives are (1) the location (Oshawa-Whitby border is a long drive for me and it is tucked away in an industrial strip mall and (2) the Styrofoam clam shell used to serve the food.

                                            I took home a 6 oz pulled pork and a 6 oz brisket, which I had for dinner tonight. I heated both slowly in the microwave in the bags in which they were packed. and had both without sauce. The pork was naturally string, but extremely tender and flavorful with a similar smokiness to the ribs, albeit less intense. The brisket was also very good: quite lean with more subtle smokiness compared to Zane's, but more tender.

                                            Overall, It's a great place to go, particularly if you are in the East end.

                                            1. Mmmmmm, I just got back from Buster Rhino's. Had a brisket sandwich there that was SO amazing I had to order more to bring home with me. The clerk told me it was just freshly made today. This is the type of sandwich one dreams about...melt-in-your-mouth meat with just the right amount of fat and a great smoky taste. No sauce required. I can hardly wait until my first sandwich digests so I can have another.

                                              On a side note, I found out that Buster Rhino's is one of the ribbers in the Oshawa Ribfest that starts tomorrow afternoon. So if you are one of the people bemoaning not being able to go to his facility because it's closed on weekends, now is your chance. It's worth the drive to Oshawa!

                                              1. So I finally remembered to make a detour and try this place. Love the staff. Have to agree with most posters that the ribs were pretty fantastic. Every Thurs. & Fri. they have a special; full rack of ribs, 1 side (beans, coleslaw, fries, hush puppies and a pop ($14.99). The ribs were dry, lean, but tender and very flavourful. The fries were quite good (I think) but for me were way too salty and I LOVE salt. Not sure if this is the norm or if the kitchen had a heavy hand with the salt today - I think they use a type of seasoning salt that's probably part of their dry rub. Sadly, the extremely generous portion (easily enough for 2) went to waste because I just couldn't eat more than a couple of bites. Tried the brisket sandwhich - lean, subtle smoky flavour, but just OK. Coleslaw - too much vinegar and on top of that, they add mayo to the dressing. Not to my liking. Will definitely go back just for the ribs. Choice of 3 sauces - mild, hot, habanero (which really wasn't very hot, just tasted like they added chili powder to the mild sauce). At these prices, I won't need to fire up the coals in the winter!

                                                2 Replies
                                                  1. re: tuttebene

                                                    Heading out there this Thursday just for the special! Thanks for flagging.

                                                    Gotta say that, even though you can debate the quality, one of the best foodie developments in the GTA this year has been the emergence of some authentic (or trying-to-be-authentic) southern Q joints. I can remember when there was only Phil's.

                                                  2. Dropped by while I was in the area after reading the recommendations.

                                                    Ordered the ribs with two sides (fries, and hush puppies which I'm in love with)
                                                    The sauces are very flavourful, this was my first experience with ribs and I preferred to really top the meat with a lot of sauce.

                                                    The menu was a tad bit confusing, hopefully the new one is up because at the time they said they were doing a menu change so the prices up on the board weren't correct. I also thought it was rather sad that with such a good product and great food that the staff clearly expression zero passion. I understand they are training new staff but that's no excuse, a newbie like me comes in and asks what a hush puppy is I would expect more than a blank stare - even when she did go around to the back and ask she came back with nothing which just made me try to guess what it might be and order it anyway.

                                                    I would go back.

                                                     
                                                    2 Replies
                                                    1. re: duckdown

                                                      If you look on their Web site, there are a number of retailers who each carry some of BR's products. Some only carry sauces and/or rub mixes, while others have pulled pork, ribs, etc. Most are east of the GTA. I've wondered if one could approach a retailer in their area and see if they can get them to bring in some of the products on a trial basis. Mind you, your idea cuts out the middle man and would keep the prices down.

                                                      1. re: CeeQueue

                                                        interesting, too bad they are east of the gta though :(

                                                        thanks for the input though, something to consider indeed

                                                        cheers!

                                                    2. OMG. Got some pulled pork, ribs and the mild sauce to go.

                                                      We had the pork with sauce on a soft kaiser last night - yummy yummy.

                                                      Too bad it's halfway to Peterborough but maybe that's a good thing......

                                                      1. After hearing about BR so many times on this board, I knew we had to try it, so we passed by on our way to Ottawa and picked up 3 lbs. pulled pork, 1 lb. pulled chicken and 1 lb. brisket (all frozen) and 3 bottles of mild sauce for less than $60. We served it to my family on Halloween (9 adults, 8 kids) and we loved it! My parents loved the brisket best, but I couldn't get enough of the pulled pork. Thought the sauce was good, will try the hot next time. We had it on its own, not on buns, so we could really enjoy the flavour. Great value too, IMHO, since we even had leftoevers for a few sandwiches the next day for lunch. Really easy to prepare, just boiling the packets for about 12 mins. Would definitely do this again for a large crowd as it's so ridiculously simple to prep. Couldn't take any of the sides with us as we were serving a couple of days later, but looking forward to getting to try them. Hmmm, actually might have to do a run out there soon as after writing this I want some!!!!! Definitely go when you get a chance!

                                                        4 Replies
                                                        1. re: chuang

                                                          The Habanero sauce is nice, i had it with brisket my only time there...i live on opposite side of the city or else I would be heavier for sure..haha

                                                          1. re: ebay3392

                                                            Was there my second time yesterday...would be more if not for the distance...had my brisket, hush puppies and coke combo plus a pulled pork sandwich to go. First items same as my comments above..excellent..pulled pork was exceptionally good...I have eaten at ~10 Southern BBQ establishments in Memphis, Decatur and Austin....Interstate, Big Bob Gibson's to name a few, BR's pulled pork tasted more like competition pulled pork I had at Memphis in May than restaurant pulled pork which IMHO tends to be dryer, grayer and less flavourful. It is that good....and it was reheated at home, not eaten on the premises.....owner went table to table to ask how everyone was....very nice fellow....the pride shows in the personality and the product. Next time I hope to try out some of these ribs the other tables were having...only one thing to say...EAT HERE!!!!

                                                          2. re: chuang

                                                            Don't neglect to get the amazing fries.

                                                            1. re: Wiley

                                                              Those fries are amongst the best I have ever had, no word of a lie! I am dying to try those smokin jalapeno bites, has anyone tried those yet?

                                                          3. Just had to comment again (well, in a different thread) that I got some more of the frozen meat (pulled pork and brisket) to bring home for my family in Ottawa and it's still fantastic. But that's not the only reason why I wanted to comment. I also wanted to say that I really appreciated how accomodating they were. I couldn't make it out before they closed on Christmas Eve, so I asked them to charge my credit card and got my brother-in-law who lives in Whitby to pick it up for me and it was no problem - in fact they even offered to make alternative arrangements for me to pick it up. How considerate is that? Anyhow, it's truly one of my favourite places.
                                                            I served some to my SO's family on Christmas Day and introduced a whole new flock of people to the smoky goodness :)

                                                            1 Reply
                                                            1. re: chuang

                                                              The service here and respect for customers has always been excellent.

                                                            2. i'm not sold on Buster Rhino's... Darryl is a lovely man who is very accomodating and keen for you to try the products he's proud of, but considering that i will occassionaly do a day of smoke myself, i would rather stick to that and keep frozen portions to satiate me in the long run than make the trek out to whitby.

                                                              the brisket was the star of the day with good flavour, smoke and tenderness. i did wish that it was thicker cut though because it flaked apart more than i wanted. the pulled pork, while better than many i've had at restaurants, still does not rival what i get out of the freezer. it is very mild in smoke and at times a little mushy or dry. the ribs did nothing for me... no porkiness, just a decent smokiness and the overwhelming flavour was sweet with non-existent backbone of spices. they were tender and had a lovely smoke ring but without great flavour i didn't see the point. the fries were a bit of a disappointment the second they started cooling down and salt wasn't distributed well on them (it fell to the bottom), so overall they were ok. hushpuppies had a nice crunchy exterior but overall was dry, dense and mostly tasted of raw cornmeal and flour. the coleslaw was too "stiff", it needed a little vinegar marinating time or finer shreds. it was quite difficult to pick up with a fork. potato salad was grainy and overwhelmed with carrots and their sweetness with little other flavour to balance it out. beans were mostly sweet and again not terribly complex, also the sauce/bean mash was thickened more than i would personally prefer. his sauces just really weren't for me.

                                                              it is definitely better than what i've had from other restos in the GTA but it still misses the mark for me. it could be purely personal preference that i like stronger flavours but i'm still surprised at how mild or bland some of the items were. i am a bit curious about their corned beef and the next time someone i know is out there i will get them to bring back a package for me.

                                                              1. Had my first trip to Buster Rhino's today, on the advice of many Chowhounds and I'm here to tell ya, this place is the real deal.

                                                                The ribs especially are THE best I've had in Canada, better than ribfests and all those who claim to be real BBQ in the GTA, and truly just as good as the best ones I've had on numerous roadside gourmet trips south to Georgia, Tennessee, Missouri, etc. Lots of sweet smoke flavour, nice bark, and beautifully moist and meaty.

                                                                I had the Buster Rhino Thursday-Friday special of a full rack two sides and a pop for $14!! and I couldn't be more impressed. Oh, and REALLY good fresh-cut fries, too! (but skip the bland dry hush-puppies that are badly in need of some onion and moistness, and get another side instead). I cannot comment on the sauce because the dry-rubbed ribs were SO flavourful and smoky and moist, I didn't even reach for any sauce

                                                                The hours are weekdays only - pretty much just lunch and early afternoon, and I'd suggest it's take-out only despite a few tables scattered about the small storefront, plus the trek to Whitby seems daunting for many city-dwellers, but if you can get out there around lunchtime on a weekday, then do it, you really won't regret it!

                                                                4 Replies
                                                                1. re: TorontoTips

                                                                  I am probably going there next week to try their jalapeno bites, dying to try those.

                                                                  1. re: TorontoTips

                                                                    Can't help but notice you said Thursday-Friday deal.. The full rack deal is now on Thursdays as well??

                                                                    1. re: duckdown

                                                                      It's been on Thursday for months now, man.

                                                                      Also, TT, I love their hush puppies. While not super moist I've never found them bland or dry. They go great with the BBQ sauce.

                                                                      1. re: magic

                                                                        They're hush puppies are great, I've been wanting some forever now. Got to get some soon.

                                                                  2. I am from St. Louis, MO and I can tell you that this is the best authentic BBQ that Ontario has to offer. Although as the owner will tell you, BBQ has definite regional variations in the US (my style bbq is wet with a molasses-based sauce), this South Carolina variety works for me! Also, if you get a chance, sign up for their tasting/sampling day. Man, what a treat! Their baked beans are just like a trip back home, fries are awesome, and the hush puppies will make your belly sit up and say "HOWDY!"

                                                                    We also bought a huge order of packaged stuff for a house-warming party last summer. Everything was vac-packed and super-easy to prepare. Came out tasting fresh and extremely moist. Darryl was a great help and even loaned us his turkey fryer to use so that we could boil a large amount of water at one time. The ribs were the hit of the party!

                                                                    If you are ever at the shop and they are in stock, please try some jalapeno bites (wrapped in bacon and smoked). They are wonderful.

                                                                    13 Replies
                                                                    1. re: Gormlaith

                                                                      I keep meaning to make the trip to Whitby specifically to get those jalapeno bites. I have only heard positive things about this item.

                                                                      1. re: callitasicit

                                                                        Make sure you call ahead -- I don't think they have them in stock every day.

                                                                        1. re: CeeQueue

                                                                          I get the impression they're a specialty item only. For catering and such.

                                                                          DT

                                                                          1. re: CeeQueue

                                                                            you can buy them frozen any day but they don't often have them cooked and available.

                                                                            1. re: pinstripeprincess

                                                                              Would it be better to have them cooked or buy them frozen from the store?

                                                                              1. re: callitasicit

                                                                                i can't tell you since i haven't eaten them, but my guess and considering the infrequency of having them available to people dropping in is that unless you're having an event catered they're probably all from frozen anyway.

                                                                                1. re: pinstripeprincess

                                                                                  They do sometimes have them available hot at the counter, but unless you're happy enough to get all kinds of other things and not be able to get the smokin' jaleno bites, you should give them a call first. I have no idea if they sell them frozen.

                                                                                  1. re: pinstripeprincess

                                                                                    Actually, they are NOT frozen. It's a matter of how much they can possibly make a day and how fast they're sold.

                                                                                    1. re: Suresh

                                                                                      really? when i was there there were gigantic bags of them sitting in the freezer. leftovers from over anticipation of sales?

                                                                                      1. re: pinstripeprincess

                                                                                        Finally got out to Whitby and had a pulled pork sandwich. I had to restrain myself from ordering a second. It was juicy, with just the right amount of sauce and served on a fresh bun. I can't wait wat to go back again. That was simply perfection on a bun!!

                                                                                        1. re: domesticgodess

                                                                                          If you get back there, try the brisket. As a pulled pork sandwich lover, I have been completely converted to the brisket. Succulent, tender and great smoke taste.

                                                                                          1. re: domesticgodess

                                                                                            I concur on the pulled pork sandwich...best commercially made PP sandwich I have had...beat out the 6-7 places I visited in Memphis and Alabama for the pork...brisket is good but sliced thinner than I like...but the best produced in GTA hands down.

                                                                                            1. re: ebay3392

                                                                                              Went there last week and had the brisket. Very nice and moist. Good sauce. SO had the pulled pork, it was good but I preferred the brisket.
                                                                                              It seems they only have ribs on thurs and friday.

                                                                          2. Buster Rhino's new shop has opened in north Oshawa (on Taunton Road [north side] just east of Simcoe in a little strip plaza). I don't know if their hours are any different than the main facility in south Whitby, though. I haven't been in but, since I have to drive past there every day at dinner time, I have a feeling that time is coming soon.

                                                                            2 Replies
                                                                            1. re: Gormlaith

                                                                              Is this a second location or has the south Whitby location closed/moved?

                                                                              1. re: tuttebene

                                                                                Just to clarify - the Whitby location is open.

                                                                            2. blech, Oshawa.. isn't that even MORE east and further from the GTA than he already was?

                                                                              6 Replies
                                                                              1. re: duckdown

                                                                                He's actively looking for franchisees. A post yesterday on Twitter:

                                                                                BusterRhinosBBQ We are actively seeking motivated individuals who would like to own and run Buster Rhino's locations throughout Ontario

                                                                                1. re: Tatai

                                                                                  oh ok... not sure if thats good or bad..

                                                                                  franchising usually leads to price hikes, inconsistencies, inexperienced cooks or employees, etc. but I sure wouldn't complain if there was a location opening in the west end!

                                                                                  1. re: duckdown

                                                                                    From what I understand all the meat is cooked at the Whitby kitchen, vacuum packed and then prepared at the franchise. I tried a sandwich at the new Oshawa North store and it tasted exactly the same as the south Whitby one.

                                                                                    1. re: Sharktail

                                                                                      So, any reports on the new Oshawa location??

                                                                                      I'm on a new schedule now so it's next to impossible for me to get to Whitby now during the week.

                                                                                      But on weekends I'd be very keen on visiting the Oshawa location. If it is good.

                                                                                      Any reports?? Many thanks.

                                                                                      1. re: magic

                                                                                        I've been to the Oshawa location, and it's open on weekends (we went at 6 pm on a Sunday). It's a small store set up as a take-out counter. They sell packaged meats and take out items. My understanding is also that the meat is prepared and packaged at the main Whitby facility. The sides were prepared for us on site, though.

                                                                                        We had a chat with the owner, and were pleasantly amused to find out that Buster Rhinos gets a lot of business from people making the trek out from Toronto, and a lot of chowhounders in particular! I guess that's the power of good reviews on a site like this.

                                                                                        -----
                                                                                        Buster Rhino's
                                                                                        2001 Thickson Rd S, Whitby, ON L1N, CA

                                                                                        1. re: Underdog Rally

                                                                                          Right on. Yeah, any feedback on this 2nd location would be great. I have a good feeling but I just wanted to solicit some other thoughts....

                                                                              2. Hey Gang,
                                                                                I'm a serious Buster Rhino addict, and yes, it really is the best authentic BBQ in Canada, and yes, even better than most of the BBQ I've tried on road trips through Memphis, KC, Texas, and the Carolinas!

                                                                                The pulled pork and brisket at the main location is always heated and served from the portion-pack, so the new location, and any subsequent locations, will be every bit as good as the original - which is awesome. Great to take home frozen and enjoy when you get the craving, too.

                                                                                To clarify, the ribs are available every day, and most days they are heated from the vacuum pack as well which are excellent. BUT Thursday after 3 or so, and Friday all day they are fresh from the smoker, and truly something magical! Not to mention cheaper, due to the Thurs-Fri full rack plus 1 side and pop special for $14.99!

                                                                                I agree with previous posters that the sides are nothing to write home about, some bordering on pretty bad, but the fresh cut fries are outstanding, and the bark on those fresh from the smoker ribs... amazing!

                                                                                -----
                                                                                Buster Rhino's
                                                                                2001 Thickson Rd S, Whitby, ON L1N, CA

                                                                                3 Replies
                                                                                1. re: TorontoTips

                                                                                  Do you know if the freshly smoked ribs available at both locations, or just South Whitby?

                                                                                  1. re: munkdogg

                                                                                    Ribs are available fresh from the smoker only in Whitby.

                                                                                    Skip the green salad - who goes to a BBQ joint for lettuce... : )

                                                                                  2. re: TorontoTips

                                                                                    I have only been there three, due to location distance ONLY...I have ordered the hush puppies all the time and have been happy with them. The pulled pork is like (very, very good) backyard style or competition style verses most places tasting "restaurant style". Having sampled second place winner of whole hog from last year's Memphis in May, this is the closest thing to that I have tried anywhere.

                                                                                  3. August long weekend, we paid Buster Rhino's another visit. It had been a few months :)

                                                                                    We went inside and Darryl asked us what we'd like, since we've eaten most of the menu. We left it up to him.
                                                                                    He told us he had chicken wings that were coming right off the smoker so we had that and a brisket sammy.
                                                                                    If you EVER can get his wings straight off the smoker, please jump at the chance. They were sauceless and unfried and, hands down, THE best wings in the GTA. Amazing smoke ring on the houseside. Flavour was great. I put some sauce on some, ate the rest as is. On a bad day, I think Buster Rhinos has the best BBQ wings in the GTA. On this day, I would challenge someone to find me better wings elsewhere.
                                                                                    Also ordered the baked beans side. MMmmmmm.....so thick and sweet and hearty and yummy!

                                                                                    -----
                                                                                    Buster Rhino's
                                                                                    2001 Thickson Rd S, Whitby, ON L1N, CA

                                                                                    1. Just tried the smoked wings last week and brought home some of the ribs. Had them last night. Both are super yum. Served the pp and brisket for a surprise party for my husband and the food got raves, as usual. Mmmmmm, want to go back for more ribs!

                                                                                      1. A big thank you to Darryl and Scott and staff for an amazing sampler event today.

                                                                                        'Redneck Wellington' and stuffed potato skins, smoked and with ridiculous trimmings. Drool.