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Jul 20, 2011 06:10 AM

Why is it so hard to find ribs at BBQ joints, in Maine, that have not been pre-boiled?

We have been to 3 BBQ places in the last 3 weeks and were disappointed that places that specialize in BBQ'd spare ribs would boil them first. This fall off the bone BBQ sauce flavored pork mush is not a BBQ'd rib. Atlantic Breweries ribs, maybe I can understand, it is a brewery first and foremost. Wo's Wicked fine BBQ on Verona Island, has been highly touted by "The Bangor Deadly Snooze". It is solely a Q place, but serves mushy ribs and their spicy sauce is still bland. Our biggest disappointment for ribs was Big Pete's Blues Wagon, just opposite the Trenton Airport in Trenton, on Rt. 3. The ribs were pre-boiled, but the best of the 3. But Pete should know better. The live blues performances on Sunday afternoon are fun and it is BYOB. Crazy Dave's Pit BBQ, the big black smoker on Rt. 3 as you leave Ellsworth, toward Bar Harbor. It's the real thing, but eating on a hot black top parking lot, has no ambiance at all. Got any recommendations for real smoked spare ribs???

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  1. 4 Points in Winterport. Smoker out in the parking lot. Be warned...once they sell out for the day, they close.

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      1. I would suggest you check out the Pigtrip review site.

        Check out the reviews for Buck's Naked in Freeport and Shaws in Sanford .

        1. re: Msample

          Thanks, we went to Buck's a few years ago. Expensive, didn't care for the ribs or the atmosphere. Yea, yea, yea, I'm fussy and spoiled. My daughter lives in Austin and we now winter in NM.

          1. re: Passadumkeg

            My impression is that Maine is pretty weak in tems of BBQ. In New England, I'd pick BT Smokehouse in Sturbridge MA as the best option if you're ever near the MA Pike/84 intersection. Closer to Maine, Goody Coles in Brentwood NH is pretty good.

            1. re: Msample

              Yup, the best seem to be in parking lots.
              Pig trip is a very helpful site.

                1. re: rizzo0904

                  Pass, the ONLY time you should "boil" a rib is when you're making "Irish" spareribs. They're "corned" (like the beef", so you have to cook them in a little water to help bring out some of the salt (just like you would with a corned beef). They're "grey" like New England corned beef (no saltpeter) & don't look the best but BOY are they yummy!
                  Never would think of boiling a BBQ rib - YUK!

        2. have you tried Beale Street BBQ in Bath? the Brisket and Pulled Pork were very good...but did not try the ribs...may be worth a try?

          1. Thanks, Sinned, I'll keep that in mind.
            Mainely Meat in Bar Harbor; boiled.
            I stopped by Crazy Dave's again at lunch time today and got to talk w/ Dave a bit. No wonder the ribs and brisket are so so good, he has both a huge black smoker and a big pile of hard wood behind it, and a degree from CIA!!! The ribs have a great natural, smoked flavor and have the right "pull", to gnaw the meat from the bone. The brisket is the best I've had outside of Texas. Ask for fresh sliced as the presliced get a little soggy sitting in its juices.
            A whole rack of ribs costs $24, but is nearly 50% larger than the other "boiled joints", that cost 20.
            If the rig is not at the parking lot on weekends, he is at some fair. Keep an eye out for him at The Fryberg Fair.

            5 Replies
            1. re: Passadumkeg

              ps We got the ribs and brought them home, but a few other suggestions for a little more ambiance. Get your meal to go and go down Beechland ( the last light), at the bottom and go to the Ellsworth Town landin, continue down Rt. # to the Thompson Island picnic area or go back down Rt. 3 to Birdsacre.

              1. re: Passadumkeg

                I hardly dare say that I just had a fully delicious lunch of pulled pork (sauces on the side, by the way, NOT on the meat as was implied elsewhere), potato salad and fine coleslaw with a delicious pint of Real Ale at Atlantic Brewing. I really don't care if the pork was pre-boiled, it tasted wonderfful.

                1. re: lifeasbinge

                  I like the beer, just not the ribs. It's a southwest thing, I guess.
                  ps You must be a Yankee, he says w/out insult, just experience.

                  1. re: lifeasbinge

                    I enjoy visiting Atlantic when I'm in the area for their bbq on saturdays. IMO the experience is more than just the sum of its parts. Yeah the bbq is not competition worthy, but some of the items are pretty tasty. And the beer probably won't win any prestigous awards, but I love the coal porter and like to drink the real ale. Put it all together and its a great way to spend a relaxing saturday afternoon with friends/family while all the touristy sites are thronged.

                    1. re: LStaff

                      L, I live 5 miles and frequent ABC often during the summer and I too enjoy the less touristy atmosphere. I just no longer order the ribs.

                2. If you are ever up in the Bethel/Sunday River area: