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HADLEY'S 940 College St -- new BBQ joint

Just found out they opened last week, according to Taste.T.O. (thanks Greg)..
"opened last week at College and Dovercourt, serving house-smoked ribs and pulled pork along with the obligatory sides (cornbread, cole slaw, mac'n'cheese) and homemade desserts."

Has anybody been yet? Please advise

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  1. You forgot the first part of the quote... "I'm not sure how the BBQ snobs on Chowhound missed it" http://www.tasteto.com/2010/10/10/t-o...

    2 Replies
    1. re: chowspotting

      I like Greg, he calls 'em like he sees 'em

      1. re: chowspotting

        I'm too much of a gentleman to repeat any alleged libel...;-)

      2. Well, I wouldn't exactly call myself a member of the 'BBQ Mafia', but I do like a good rib. I dropped by this evening and was, well, somewhat underwhelmed.

        I ordered the half-rib dinner (which includes two sides). I chose the 'slaw and the baked beans. The beans were actually my favourite part of the meal: somewhat al-danté, not too sweet and nicely flavoured. The 'slaw was fine in a generic sort of way, but the ribs, sadly, I found to be somewhat lacking. They certainly looked great with a nice mahogany bark, and the sweet and smokey smell was quite pleasant when the dish was presented.

        Alas, the texture was a little... how would you say? Overdone. Dry. Fall-off-the-bone, but not in a tender sort of way. Sort of like ribs that were prepared for (but unsold by) lunch, and were kept as best as they could for an early dinner patron. I've done my share of home smoking, and it seemed to me that perhaps the source ribs were a tad on the lean side: not quite enough fat to properly smoke the bones into submission. The flavouring was smoke-heavy, but I liked it: go big smoke or go home, is my motto: rub/ smoke/ sauce 'balance' if for effete urbanites who are afraid of strong, bold BBQ that's not afraid to kick you in the butt and remind you of your meal hours after the fact :)

        They've only been open for two weeks, though, and I will be back. Look for review part II one day soon.


        2 Replies
          1. re: goofibulator

            Thanks goofibulator...They sound like back ribs. I also loved the appropriate "al-danté" reference to the heat of The Inferno

            What places serve side ribs or spare ribs as a choice against back ribs? At least they wouldn't be dry.

          2. I had lunch at Hadley's today with my wife and her parents and we really enjoyed our meals. We shared their pulled pork sandwich, their smoked chicken club sandwich and the grilled vegetable sandwich.

            Everything tasted good and there was a nice smoke flavour in both the pulled pork and chicken club sandwiches. In addition, the fries were fresh cut and done perfectly.

            1. Happened upon Hadley's by accident for dinner tonight. I arrived a bit earlier than my friend. It was quiet when I arrived. Service was very friendly. They brought me water and a glass of wine right away. Had a nice chat with the chef. They offered give me a magazine while I waited for my friend, which I declined, but nice thought. As the restaurant filled up, we had a new waitress who was very friendly and attentive.
              We shared th whitefish cakes for an appetizer, which were delicious. The cakes have a pea puree in them and the moist white fish on top had a nice smokey flavour. Served nicely with four little pancakes topped with the smoked fish, with a little green salad in the middle.

              I ordered the quarter chicken dinner with beans and green goddess salad. The chicken was very moist, even with my white meat order. Nice seasoning and smokiness on the crispy skin. The beans were delicious. Nice balance of smoke and sweet. The salad was ok. It was fresh. I was expecting more from the description on the menu - more avocado or something, but it was fine.

              My friend had th smoked chicken lasagna, which she seemed to enjoy, although I didn't try it.

              All in all a good experience. Enjoyed the food. Good service. They didn't seem to mind that we lingered for a long time even though there was a full house by the time we left.

              5 Replies
              1. re: pescatarian

                These non-traditional BBQ offerings sound pretty good. Might have to give this place a try this weekend.

                1. re: jamesm

                  I forgot to mention they also brought complimentary mini corn muffins (warm) with butter. Nice touch.

                  I'm not a BBQ expert, but our food tasted good, was flavourful and the chicken moist. The appetizer was a highlight. They had a smoked fish platter which I will try next time.

                  1. re: pescatarian

                    I guess they're doing corn muffins instead of cornbread? Not a bad idea, actually.

                    1. re: duckdown

                      I didn't notice if they had corn bread separately, but these were definitely muffins and they were good.

                    2. re: pescatarian

                      Thanks for the report pescatarian. Sounds pretty good !

                      There are a few good BBQ joints around but I always wonder if they can keep it going in TO (considering the number of BBQ fans and the amount of competition). Good BBQ, using it in varied ways, having fish (mmmm smoked fish), and good things for the non-BBQers sounds difficult to pull off, but maybe Hadley's is onto something.

                      Phil's BBQ (just down the road), I place I personnaly like, may be outgunned.

                2. TWO THUMBS UP
                  Wife had the Duck Risotto loved it
                  I had the pulled pork Excellent
                  Beet Salad was very good and the chesse cake yum !

                  1. I haven't managed to get there for dinner yet, but their brunches are lovely. Last Saturday I got Eggs Benedict (only I chose the vegetarian option with arugula), each served on what was either a fresh-baked tea biscuit or possibly a scone. It came with lovely shredded fried potatoes, and delicate salad and a small nicely dressed fruit salad. Absolutely delicious, and only $12.

                    2 Replies
                    1. re: mycrazyhair

                      Do you know if they are doing anything special for Valentines Day ?

                      1. re: Luvtooeat

                        I haven't seen any sign of special plans, but then I haven't been looking. If I'm in again soon, I'll report back.

                    2. Went two days ago and had a great first visit. Delish food, really nice service and owners. Definitely going back.

                      1. Finally stopped in yesterday and grabbed some brunch at the bar. It wasn't super busy so all of the staff were very friendly and talked to me for most of my stay. I had the "remedy" which is two deep fried poached eggs (sooo gooey and crispy!) on top of potato hash, baked beans and pulled pork. Comes with a side of coleslaw and a little bit of fruit salad. I was hungover and starving..it was the perfect breakfast! Going to go back and try the dinner menu sometime soon.

                        1. The food is awesome here. Whether brunch or dinner, their food rocks!

                          LOVE the ribs and the corn bread/muffins! The smoked chicken club is super good with their homemade bacon! The pulled pork is above average but I would like to have a larger serving of it with the breakfast or even when served on the bun as a sandwich. The baked beans are peppery and savoury and delish even if they lack any sweet whatsoever. Great mac and cheese!

                          But back to the ribs. They are amazing! : )