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Mar 6, 2009 02:23 PM

Big Mista's BBQ at your local farmer's markets

I just tried it recently, after the deluge of posts. Wouldn't have heard about it before if it weren't for chowhound since this BBQ stand does not show up at the big farmer's markets that I usually patronize such as the Santa Monica one or the Hollywood one on Selma on Sundays.

Anyhow, the brisket and tri-tip were really good, one was sliced thicker than the other. i believe the tri-tip was thinner, and both had that beautiful hickory smoke layers prized by BBQ fanatics just like me. the smoke ring speaks of authenticity. both were served sans sauce. but i tore apart some pieces and dipped it into the cue sauce, and the sauce was pretty darn good too. actually dipped the supermarket wheat bread into the sauce too.

the sides, beans and potato salad dusted with paprika felt a little bit more upscale and refined than usual. heck they even tasted darn good additionally, these are not Costco tubs of beans and potato salad.

oh, and i did partake in one of the red velvet cupcakes which was a delicious coda to end the meal. my only problem is the meat seems to be too cold, and more so, why is it that bbq usually seems to be served cold or lukewarm rather than piping hot, migeht be due to the smoker in opposition to the grilling options.

good stuff, not cheap ( a meal will be at least fifteen bucks with a drink but i believe the quality is nothing to sneer at either, so you're paying for the goods.).


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  1. I stopped by Big Mista' on Thursday at the El Segundo Farmers Market. This was the 11th of about 20 local places that I plan to try during my barbecue survey (after which I’ll revisit a dozen or so and then post a report here). Of course, I've been to some of these restaurants, shacks, and tents many times over the years.

    Most of them will be seeing a lot less of me after last Thursday. Big Mista' is the top choice so far -- and by far. I could sense what was coming as I walked up from the downwind side and nearly broke into a sprint 50 yards out. When I reached the tent, a middle-aged customer was just finishing a free sample of brisket. He was licking his fingers lovingly and muttering, as if stunned, “Oh, man! Ohh-man!”

    Comparing Big Mista' to other local Q, I was semi- to fully stunned myself, especially by their pork ribs, but let’s start with the brisket. At this point in the survey, they tie for the best, and the juicier slices would make a solid competitor among the Texas Monthly Top 50 published last year (see: http://www.texasmonthly.com/2008-06-0... ). Big Mista' is my current leader on pulled pork -- moist and flavorful with a fine texture -- but the real winner was their wonderfully tender, juicy, and crusty pork ribs. These honeys would cause a commotion up against the greatest ribs I’ve had in the Midwest and South. (By the way, there's a nice layer of creamy-white fat on the ribs that’s an important contributor to flavor, tenderness, and juice -- it’s easy to trim off on the plate.)

    Further details are coming in my final write-up. I probably shouldn’t have said so much at this point, because wild enthusiasm ought to be based on more than just one visit. But, as that fellow customer noted in his instant analysis, “Oh, man! Ohh-man!”

    You can try this wandering festival at one of their five locations -- see http://www.bigmista.com/vendingmenu.htm for the schedule. Thanks again to Big Mista’s competition teammate, our own Professor Salt, for providing details in a previous thread.

    2 Replies
    1. re: sbritchky

      Hi sbritchky,

      How did I miss this post? :) Wow, this sounds too tempting. :) BTW, why is there great anticipation for Sunday at Atwater? Does Mrs. Mista normally not serve Mac & Cheese except once in a while? Thanks.

      1. re: exilekiss

        Big Mista' BBQ is worthy of your attention, exilekiss. And, yes, Mrs. Mista' makes M&C only occasionally and it's reputed to be outstanding. (I haven't had the pleasure yet, unfortunately.) But get there early, if you're coming on Sunday -- they'll be serving 10a-2p -- because it doesn't last long. As you know, M&C is one of the most sought-after BBQ accompaniments, so excitement is already building around the city, babies are squealing with joy and delight, ...!

    2. i thought that Big Mista was showing up at the Atwater Farmers Market on Sundays on Glendale Ave. right off the 5 freeway... am i mistaken? please advise. would like to try some one of these days... : )

      8 Replies
      1. re: HerbyN

        it shows up tues, wed, thurs, and sat, as well as sundays at various farmer's markets.


        1. re: HerbyN

          As reported in a nearby separate thread, they plan to serve Mrs. Mista's mac & cheese this coming Sunday in Atwater. Great anticipation from us Big Mista' fans.

          1. re: HerbyN

            Atwater Village at the Wells Fargo Parking lot. Sundays 10am-2pm.

            1. re: monku

              They run out so don't go late!

            2. re: HerbyN

              Big Mista was in Atwater when I was there a week and a half ago.

              1. re: SilverlakeGirl

                SLG, is there anyplace to sit down with your BBQ at the Atwater FM, or do you have to eat in the car?

                1. re: sbritchky

                  They have some tables to sit down and eat right across from their stand.

                  1. re: sbritchky

                    There are tables but I noticed the whole layout of the Atwater market in recent weeks has gotten very cramped.

                    Big Mista was so crowded it was clearly going to be a big wait. Eating at Delmy's Pupusas I eat sitting on a ledge at the bank with the plate in my lap.

              2. Dammit, I wish you people would stop yakking about Big Mista BBQ ... at this rate they'll've sold out by 10:05 and I'll *never* get a chance to try any!

                2 Replies
                1. re: maxzook

                  That's why I make sure I'm there by 9:45 (they're open for biz), beat the crowds and get good parking.
                  It's worth the hassle.

                  1. re: monku

                    Grab a Danish, stir some milk into that pulled pork, and you've got an outstanding BBQ breakfast!

                2. If you're in the South Bay on Wednesday afternoon check them out at the Lawndale CFM. Not too crowded, free street parking.
                  Their brisket sandwich is darn tasty, fairly generously portioned and reasonable at $4 each.

                  Torrance Certified Farmers Market
                  2400 Jefferson St, Torrance, CA

                  Lawndale Farmers Market
                  147th St and Hawthorne Blvd, Lawndale, CA

                  El Segundo Farmers Market
                  Main St and Pine St, El Segundo, CA

                  4 Replies
                  1. Are you saying at the Watts Farmer's Market, there's not that big of a turnout. It the Watkins park within 5 or 6 blocks of the Watts Towers and Community Center, which if I remember correctly is on E. 108th St.

                    1. Where did you get the information about Lawndale, CD Hound? Their Web site still lists it as the location for Wednesdays.

                      1. re: Chow Down Hound

                        Yep, they are not at the Lawndale one. When I asked about Big Mista, the manager's who run the market said Big Mista would not be there, but "an even better BBQ will be there called Britt's." that was according to here, it would be hard for a new cue joint to measure up to Big Mista at least as far as brisket is concerned.

                        1. re: kevin

                          Spotted Britt's a few weekends ago in a Harbor City parking lot (PCH btwn. Western & Normandie next door to Harley Davidson). They run a pretty sizable operation supported by a giant RV & a pretty big crew, one of whom told me they'd be at that spot weekly during the coming summer. They were running out of stuff when I got there, but I did manage to snag a 1/2-slice of brisket from the staff. Didn't get any sauce with that bite, but the meat was solid... smoke ring and all. Wasn't floored... but then what do I know about brisket? Never been to Snow's in TX or whatever. One interesting thing to note is that all the plates were under $10, the spare ribs coming in at exactly 10, if I remember correctly. No a la carte listed, but they told me they'll do it if you ask. Weird, I always thought that's how BBQ joints make the big $$$. They were also really pushing the catering side of things. The owner-lookin' dude even asked me if I own a business, to which I replied: no.

                    2. I posted my review of Big Mista's tri-tip here:


                      Atwater Village Farmers' Market
                      3250 Glendale Blvd, Los Angeles, CA 90039