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Nov 15, 2012 04:48 AM

Pride & Joy BBQ......

I made my way to Myron Mixon's new Pride & Joy BBQ last night and it was an interesting experience to say the least. This is a 'destination' type place as its not in Miami's best neighborhood (and we'll get to that later).

I arrived right around 5 as that's when any BBQ place is starting to pull product off the smoker as the dinner hour is near. I sat at the bar, went over the menu carefully before making my selections and my servers were Ann Marie and Lido.

First, their beer menu is extensive - both in the bottle and on tap. Problem is, they don't have much of what's on their menu so I settled for a bottle of Stella Artois which was $6. It wasn't very cold but I soldiered on from there. The bar area is quite nice and they have an antique pick-up truck as the decorative focal point (but its much too large and takes up too much space but still cool).

My first selection was their smoked chicken wings. I ordered the 8-piece version. Unfortunately, they've chosen to go with a smaller graded wing (yes, wings can be ordered in different sizes!). If these wings ever were smoked, it wasn't for long and then they were deep fried. These were very average and ordinary and rather tasteless. Very unimpressive and not worth the price. Not a great start.

From there, I went for a half rack of the St. Louis style ribs. Yes, ribs come graded as well and these were probably the 1.5-pound slabs so they weren't very large or particularly meaty. That said, they were properly rubbed and smoked and tasted great! If you're looking for "fall off the bone" ribs (and that's not real BBQ) then these aren't for you. If you're a BBQ purist and love a properly smoked ribs that come away from the bone with a gentle tug then you're in the right place! These ribs were excellent.

And then I ordered up a BBQd half chicken. If this half chicken spent much time in the smoker it would be hard to discern as there wasn't much smoke flavor if any. This piece of yardbird was a major disappointment.

At any BBQ establishment, the meat is the thing for me. But I did order cole slaw and it was the type I like - - - rough cut and not minced. It was very tasty and likeable. Large portion.

This establishment looks like a cool, hip BBQ place and the music in the background is blues-based and it's a fun place to be. They also have a lovely back porch / terrace with fantastic, heavy-duty wooden picnic tables and there's a neat fence built out of small smoking logs.

This place is expensive as BBQ goes. My bill with tip was $51 for 1/2 slab or ribs, 8 chicken wings, 1/2 BBQ chicken, cole slaw and 1 beer. I believe that most everything is a la carte and that's unusual in a BBQ restaurant. The ribs were truly excellent while the wings and chicken were fair-at-best. The slaw was delicious. Service was excellent. Ambiance was cool.

Fact is, this is a sketchy neighborhood and parking is an issue. Is it a dangerous neighborhood? I didn't really feel that way (as I'm a 6'6, 290lb guy). But I don't think you would want your wife or girlfriend wondering around by themselves on those side streets far past dark. Walking towards the restaurant and smelling the smoke is a plus, dodging the chickens running around the streets is part of the neighborhood's charm.

How does this place stack up against Brother Jimmy's and Sparky's? To be fair, this place is new and still finding its 'sea legs'. BBQ Legend Myron Mixon is a partner and you expect greatness but he has four other parnters in the venture and it seems like they've opened before they should and they're working out kinks. As the old saying goes, 'you only get one chance to make a first impression'. The food at Brother Jimmys and Sparky's Roadside is far more consistent and the best bet at the moment. But Pride & Joy has potential and is worth the trip but maybe waiting another week or two is advised. Again, those ribs were really great......

Ft. Pierce, FL

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  1. Thanks for your report. My guess is you will be back within a month so I will wait for that report.

    10 Replies
    1. re: tpigeon

      Yea...I'll give it a few weeks and get back there.....and then report.....I will say that the product has to improve or this place will fail spectacularly.....It's not in a great place and it has to carve out its place as a 'destination' type of establishment......It has to be 'worth the effort to go there".....Parking is an issue....neighborhood is sketchy....and the food has to be incredible.....And fact is...their competition - - Sparky's and Brother Jimmy's is SOLID....They have their work cut out for them......And $6 bottled beers is stiff.....

      Ft. Pierce, FL

      1. re: LargeLife

        Don't forget about the stupendous price point. This place is extremely expensive for bbq. One full rack $26, 2 small sides $8, and a drink $4 is a $38 dinner untaxed. I can't see anyone even spending $26 on a half rack, 2 sides, and drink. And then there's the neighborhood and the parking? I will probably not go there no matter how good it is.

        In comparison for price, Rock n Roll Ribs is $18 for a full rack baby backs and 2 sides with garlic bread. And it's not that shabby for grilled type ribs.

        1. re: freakerdude

          FD! My man!

          I did mention that the place is expensive as BBQ goes......and that a la carte for a BBQ restaurant is unusual......But this place is in Miami.....and overhead is high....

          I did mention that the neighborhood is 'sketchy'......Although smelling the smokers while walking up to the establishment is intoxicating.....And dodging the neighborhood yardbirds was....charming....

          And despite the flaws....(and there are flaws that need to get fixed and quickly!).....the ribs there were nothing less than excellent.....And as a BBQ's all about the meat!....I really could care less about the sides....I leave that to the womenfolk....

          Ft. Pierce, FL

          1. re: LargeLife

            The neighborhood may be sketchy but it's very popular. Parking is easy, just find a FREE spot on the streets.

            That said, I only had an order of 8 wings when I went. I didn't think they were small but they weren't big either. I thought the flavor was just OK but they were nice and juicy. I really liked squirting a little mustard bbq on them. Beers were expensive and they were out of a lot of them. Loved the space, vibe, and music.

            Bottom line is that you're gonna struggle to find good BBQ in Miami. I'm surprised to hear you fawn for Brother Jimmy's as I've not heard many good reports. Need to try for myself and get back to Sparky's because it's been a long time and I only went once. I think a BBQ crawl is being planned...

            1. re: Blind Mind

              I'm definitely up for a BBQ Crawl!! Capitol idea! I've been to Brother Jimmy's 3 times......My only complaint there was that they didn't take the backskin off of the spare ribs and that's BBQ 101 as far as I'm concerned....Otherwise....they were very good....As were the wings...Chicken and Brisket....Their collards were excellent but I thought not having pepper/vinegar sauce to go on them was heinous.....All 3 times there were very good and service was solid....hence the fawning....

              Sparky's....been there 3 times....and again....all visits were solid....Meats smoked correctly with nice rubs.....I don't think you have to struggle to find good BBQ in Miami at this particular point.....

              I did find a free spot to part at Pride & Joy......It's a sketchy neighborhood.....As a 6'6....300lb guy.....with one or two good punches left in me.....I'm not escared to go most South Florida....But as I wrote....I don't think you'd want your wife, mother or girlfriend walking around those backstreets at night......

              I'm up for a BBQ Crawl......Monday thru Thursday nights work best for me......

              Ft. Pierce

                1. re: LargeLife

                  Yes, I'm in the planning stages of the crawl. Sparky's v Brother Jimmy's v Pride & Joy. Initial thinking is to limit group to 20 -25 and have everyone try ribs, pulled pork and brisket at each spot. At end of crawl we vote best ribs, best pulled pork and best brisket and see if we can crown an overall winner... but I'm open to suggestions

                    1. re: The Chowfather

                      Like I said....this is a great idea and up for it! I'm in the Miami area Monday thru Thursday......BBQ is subjective....So many people have so many different ideas.....When I visit a BBQ establishment....I'm looking for the BASICS.....Has the backskin been taken off the ribs?.....Was some sort of rub applied....Was the meat pulling away easily from the bone?......Was there a smoky taste / smoke ring?......That sort of thing......Preparing and serving consistent BBQ is extremely difficult and I know it from first-hand experience.......Not really looking for brilliance....but brilliance with the BASICS.....

                      Let's Crawl!

                      Ft. Pierce, FL

                      1. re: The Chowfather

                        If its on a sun or mon nite I 'm interested