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Tallahassee - Up In Smoke

g
gmc251 Sep 22, 2011 05:09 PM

Went for dinner and had the four meat combo since I wanted to try a little of everything. I ordered brisket, 1/4 slab of spare ribs, pulled pork and hot sausage.

Starting with the best first, the ribs were well cooked, tender, but not overcooked and falling off the bone. Good sized serving, 4 bones. They had decent pork flavor, but not much smoke flavor.

The pulled pork was a bit stringy, not bad flavor, but again, no real smoke flavor. A good sized portion again. Enough to make a large sandwich.

The brisket was a bit dry, with no real bark and not a lot of flavor. Average sized portion, three thin slices.

They offer a choice of hot or sweet sausage. I ordered the hot. It was terrible. No heat, sweet or flavor and dry to top it off. The portion was tiny, a single link about 4 inches and split.

On the table were 3 sauces, mustard, sweet and regular. I had the regular on the pork and ribs. A thin tomato/vinegar sauce without much flavor. I tasted the sweet. it was a little thicker and sweeter. I didn't try the mustard.

The meal came with two sides. I chose onion rings and sweet potato fries. Each carried a $1.00 upcharge. They were both very good. Thick cut onion rings, with a coarse crispy breading. Not at all soggy, even at the end of the meal. The sweet potato fries were as crispy as you can get them, with good flavor.

The service was good, friendly and efficient. It appears these folks are decent restaurateurs, but not particularly well versed in barbecue

With a soft drink and tax, the tab came to 23 bucks and change, typical for a meal of that size.

2 stars for the barbecue + 1 for the sides and service.

  1. c
    crewsweeper Sep 23, 2011 05:22 AM

    Sounds like I'll stick to Piggy's. Thanks for pioneering and the review.

    1. steakman55 Sep 24, 2011 09:16 AM

      Went by the first week at 12:45 for lunch with a group of 4 or 5. Even though there were tables available, we were told it would be at least a 45 minute wait for a table as they were backed up. Chalked it up to first week snafu. Friend later went by and said it was mediocre at best and the sauce was not good. It is a shame since Tallahassee, as a southern town, has such a BBQ deficiency. It showed promise. I will give it a chance later. Right now, best BBQ is at Piggy's (Crewsweeper is usually right) and Marie Livingston's lunch only.

      2 Replies
      1. re: steakman55
        c
        crewsweeper Sep 26, 2011 05:47 AM

        Thanks for the straw vote Steak. Notice the TD's Hattiebelle in Sunday's paper was stretching and skirting around to give this place a good review. But basically only liked the onion rings and maybe one of her guests raved on the gouda burger. No mention about the sauces at all. But then she always did skirt and stretch to give every place she went too some good points. Maybe Bob D. will like her recos as much as her photos in her new job.

        1. re: crewsweeper
          steakman55 Sep 27, 2011 03:28 PM

          Lunch there yesterday with a friend who was buying and did not have my glasses (could not read menu), so just ordered what I thought was a good test of a BBQ joint: a pulled pork sandwich and cole slaw. The meat was good, but stringy and had no smoky bbq taste that I could discern. Served on garlic bread.

          The sauces that I tasted were all sweetish,, and I did NOT taste the actual sweet sauce. Not to my liking. Cole slaw was dry and I did not finish it, which is unusual.

          Friend had sweet potato fries, and I tried one; pretty good. We split a half order of onion rings and they were indeed crunchy but I would not order again.

          As a final note, I asked the server what was the best thing for lunch and he mentioned a brisket sandwich covered with gouda cheese. BBQ joints should not even have gouda cheese on the premises, much less smother a brisket sandwich with it.

      2. g
        gmc251 Oct 22, 2011 04:32 PM

        Went back for lunch yesterday. Had a pulled pork sandwich and it was much improved. The meat wasn't stringy and it had much better smoke flavor. Had onion rings for the side and they were good too.

        Looks like they are making progress.

        I'll try them again in a week or two.

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