HOME > Chowhound > Los Angeles Area >


BBQ in Los Angeles

Hi foodlovers , just moved to the LA Missing smoked ribs or briskets . Anyone have any good recommendations . Thanks

  1. Click to Upload a photo (10 MB limit)
    1. re: thechez5

      Agreed. Bludso's. Worth the drive.

        1. re: A5 KOBE

          4th for Bludso's Compton.

          Also like Big Mista at different farmers markets in LA area.

          1. re: wienermobile

            I forgot Big Mista. Now how could I forget ?

            Yes, I also highly recommend BM especially for their brisket. Their smoked pastrami is damn good too.

            1. re: kevin

              Agree. Love Big Mista's brisket and the pastrami but just know that the BBQ Pastrami is a special and they don't have it often enough for me. I have also heard that they intend to open a brick and mortar restaurant soon in Long Beach.

            2. re: wienermobile


              or randolph's (call ahead to see if they smoked that day).

              btw, has anyone tried old fashioned flavor recently? i drove down western a couple of weeks ago, and it looks like they've remodeled.

                1. re: barryc

                  Big Mista's current list of farmers market locations:

                  Atwater Village CFM
                  3250 Glendale Boulevard
                  (Wells Fargo Parking Lot)
                  Sunday 10a-2p

                  Century City CFM
                  1800 Avenue of the Stars
                  (TOPA Building Plaza)
                  Thursday 11a-3p

                  Bank of America CFM
                  333 S. Hope St
                  (Downtown BofA Plaza)
                  Friday 10a-2p

                  Torrance CFM
                  2200 Crenshaw Boulevard
                  (Charles Wilson Park)
                  Saturday 8a-1p

                2. re: wienermobile

                  Bludso's was featured on tonight's Diners, Drive ins & Dives on Food Network. Kevin even got a plug in for the new La Brea location

              1. re: kevin

                been hearing a bit about Phillips in the past few days, all good

              2. If its closer try the Bludso's http://www.barandque.com/ on La Brea and see if it scratches your BBQ itch, or not.

                2 Replies
                1. re: Servorg

                  That location will be open Memorial Day for take out only.

                    1. If you want it to go Hardys at Coldwater and Moorpark on weekend afternoons is really good.

                      1 Reply
                      1. re: BSW6490

                        I stumbled upon a Santa Maria-style tri tip parking lot cart, right near me that was as good as I've ever had. I regret they vanished.

                      2. Classic: Monteys at Topanga and Ventura. My memory is in westwood. great ribs.

                        1. Ok I tried bludso's, Big Mista and phillips. They are in my opinion ok , not great . Going to give Hardys a shot on the weekend . Thanks everyone

                          11 Replies
                          1. re: taztaz30

                            Understand something.

                            This is 'Q in Los Angeles.

                            Temper down the expectations and you'll enjoy yourself just fine.

                            1. re: ipsedixit

                              I think your "cred" took a beating with Tony Roma's so your "Temper down the expectations..." philosophy is probably missing its mark.

                              1. re: Servorg

                                Do you like any particular location of Tony Roma's better than the others ?

                                1. re: kevin

                                  I like the ones that have gone out of business best...

                                  1. re: Servorg


                                    It seems like the majority of them have gone out of business as well as Chicago for Ribs.

                                  2. re: kevin

                                    Do you like any particular location of Tony Roma's better than the others ?


                                    1. re: ipsedixit

                                      They had a great Sizzler there! Sadly it is going out of business :(

                                      1. re: Thor123

                                        Must've been the competition from the Tony Romas ...

                                        1. re: Thor123

                                          You go to Sizzler's for a nice salad bar and then Tony's for some bbq ribs. What could be better ?

                                2. re: taztaz30

                                  Hardy's is very good. Nice guys. They will let you sample if you ask. Pork ribs, brisket and sausages are all winners. Very reasonable.

                                  1. re: taztaz30

                                    which bludso's and phillips? did you get s.o.s.?

                                    could you elaborate on what you're looking for? the ribs in the picture look like they've been grilled, not smoked....

                                  2. You can not compare LA BBQ to Austin or Lockhart Texas open pit BBQ. You will be disappointed and will cry BBQ tears. The best LA has to offer is listed on this discussion from fellow chowhounders. The next time Southwest has a sale Franklin BBQ I'm so there.

                                    12 Replies
                                    1. re: wienermobile

                                      What about the Kreuz Market or Clark's Outpost ?

                                      1. re: kevin

                                        I love Kreuz Market. They do mail order but shipping is expensive. (Brisket $11.90 per pound. 3 Pound minimum. Kreuz uses thermal dry ice shipping for all food items to ensure freshness. A one-time fee of $17.00 will be added to all shipping charges for thermal boxing and supplies.)

                                      2. re: wienermobile

                                        Small sample size caveat, but I wasn't that impressed overall with the big three in Lockhart when I did my Austin bbq tour a while back. Bludso's and Smoke City at their best beat those three's brisket IMO. But I have had some inconsistent bbq from the two LA places

                                        my trip report. Note, I don't claim it to be definitive or even ranking for anyone. Just my experience and thoughts based on one visit.


                                        1. re: Jase

                                          >>my trip report. Note, I don't claim it to be definitive or even ranking for anyone. Just my experience and thoughts based on one visit.<<

                                          Great report, and I think all that 'que on one trip gives you some serious cred...

                                          1. re: bulavinaka

                                            It would be foolish of me to claim serious cred from one trip. I will only claim to having a little bit of experience.

                                          2. re: Jase

                                            i have no cred, and have not had bludso's.
                                            however, smoke city is nowhere near as good as the stuff in lockhart or luling.
                                            or even nyc.
                                            and i like smoke city.

                                            1. re: linus

                                              As I said I by no means am stating my experience or opinion is definitive. Just that based on that one experience Smitty's and Kreutz was not that great. I was struggling pulling my brisket apart at Smitty's . On their best days I think Bludso's and Smoke city beat what I had that day. That's on their best days. I've had mediocre at both too. I expect inconsistency out of LA BBQ. The market demand just isn't high enough. Lockhart I expect and demand consistency.

                                              Luling was damn good and better than anything I've had in LA. Franklin, Snow's and Mueller's was just elite. I don't ever expect LA BBQ to come close to that in my lifetime.

                                              1. re: Jase

                                                Snow's BBQ was the Calvin's trillins joint right ?

                                                1. re: kevin

                                                  Yes. It was worth me getting up in the dark, driving an hour to get there right when they opened. No lines, great BBQ for breakfast, fun chatting with nearby diners and it was slow enough I got a mini tour of the pits and chatted with them for a bit. Wry nice people.

                                                  Drive through the countryside and horse ranches to get there while the sun was coming up was also a great experience.

                                                2. re: Jase

                                                  duly noted. my experiences at blacks smittys kruez and in luling run contrary to yours.

                                                  1. re: linus

                                                    Lulling was great. I don't expect to see that matched in LA either.

                                                    I was bummed about Lockhart. As my report notes, it was my first full day of the trip and was hoping it wasn't an omen. I do plan to make a similar trip next year hopefully. Will go to Lockhart again just because.

                                                    This year I'm planning to do the Memphis version. Blues and BBQ! Hope I have as much fun as I did in Austin.

                                            2. Robbie Richter, former pitmaster for Fatty Cue and of TLCs Pitmasters will be giving a preview of his upcoming Roadhouse LA this weekend with the "this is not a pop-up" gals.

                                              Pretty exciting.


                                              2 Replies
                                                1. re: TonyC

                                                  Knowing all three, don't give much cred to the complainant. And this is not a temporary gig between TINAP and Richter. My understanding is Richter is partnered with the TINAP gals and Adam Fleischman.

                                              1. I guess I was comparing LA BBQ with Franklin's or Blacks . My neighbor said that a BBQ guy parks his smoker on the street not that far from my house on the weekend's and that he has some of the best brisket and ribs that he has ever tasted . Going to give it a try , will let you guys and ladies know how it turned out .

                                                1 Reply
                                                1. re: taztaz30

                                                  I'd love to hear about results, take a photo

                                                2. Where did you move from. It's impossible to find a Memphis style fresh, smokes dry rib because turnover is not high. Korean la's best bbq (parks), JR's in culver tries, but don't waste your time because they are serving day old, bludsos is good and to get "you fix" try Jim's Fallbrook in woodland hills, the 1/2 & 1/2 is a great sannich, ribs ain't bad, but take them home and correct the few mistakes. Rib ranch, has the tools, but qualify of ribs & lack of experience with smoke is their downfall, (can't keep the lid on) feel free to ask me about more. -I've been on the quest for a year and tried MANY

                                                  23 Replies
                                                  1. re: CharlesKochel

                                                    The dry rub ribs at Central BBQ in Memphis remains the best BBQ ribs I have ever had. I too have not found anything close in LA over the past 5 years.

                                                    1. re: Porthos

                                                      Your right Central has the best ribs I have ever tasted .

                                                      1. re: taztaz30

                                                        Correct on Central on Central. They are hands down the best ribs in the entire world. 2nd is a distance then the water starts to muddy from there. I come in comparing the BBQ Ribs everywhere to that of Central BBQ on Central, it's ashamed for those those of us that crave the taste, but in about 7 hours, or 9 beers, you can have the at home, in the park or on the beach, it only takes a large smoking pit, like that of a propane tank, cut in half with a wood box, low on one side and a chimney high opposite the box, a couple of slide holes, one on chimney top and one on the bottom to control the low heat (230 - 300) some dry rub and a bit of garlic, molasses, viigar and fruit bbq sauce to char on about 15 min. prior, some hardwood charcoals and chunks of fruit tree wood and viola, ribs from the south

                                                        1. re: CharlesKochel

                                                          I put my money on the Iberico de Bellota costillas. Best in the world.

                                                          1. re: CharlesKochel

                                                            7 hours?! Did this in 2 in the oven ;-)

                                                      2. re: CharlesKochel

                                                        I'm from cali,but I worked all over Texas for about two years and my job also took me to Memphis . So I had really great BBQ .

                                                        1. re: CharlesKochel

                                                          CK, I notice Baby Blues is not on your list above, I'm sure you must have tried them but they are the only place I've been to (not very recently tho) that does dry rub their meats, and seems to smoke them. What's your opinion, if you have one? They do North Carolina style. And I still think their Mac and cheese is pretty killer.....

                                                            1. re: TonyC

                                                              I always thought that was 2 words: fucking parboiled.

                                                              1. re: ipsedixit

                                                                Is there actual evidence of par-boiling by BB's, or is this just an assumption?

                                                                1. re: Servorg

                                                                  Never been to BB's, nor do I know or even care how they are making their ribs.

                                                                  I'm just making a grammatical point.

                                                                  1. re: Servorg

                                                                    [fucking] "parpoiled" pulled from horse's mouth by an attractive Latina blogger during a media event.

                                                                    1. re: TonyC

                                                                      I've read on Yelp that the owner said that they "fucking" did no such "fucking" par-boiling of their ribs. So this all seems like a "fucking" Urban Myth or just the usual hating on places we see on this site too many times that somehow have failed the "too cool for school" litmus test.

                                                                      1. re: Servorg

                                                                        Servorg, have you tried them? Par boiled or not, the BBQ at BB is not very good. I ordered the Memphis style ribs expecting Memphis style ribs. They were nothing close to what I had in Memphis. No crust, or bark, or smoke ring, or taste. Maybe that's why they offer you a bunch of different sauces to try? Not even nearly as good as Corky's much less even need to mention Central.

                                                                        It's ironic you brought "cool" into the discussion as I feel that's how they promote the place and how they are able to survive (eg. logo, "XXX porn sauce")

                                                                        1. re: Porthos

                                                                          I am pretty much in agreement with this previous CH post http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/578386 by burumun on Baby Blues (photos in lower link).


                                                                          1. re: Servorg

                                                                            I thought the comments on her blog were pretty amusing the first one being: "I still like Tony Roma's for bbq." Especially combined with your response to ipse above.

                                                                            Even yelpers have pointed out that there is no smoke ring on the ribs at BB. I don't know if they par boil or not but I do know there's no smoke ring which is odd for "smoked" ribs. Someone seeking true Memphis style ribs may be pretty disappointed in BB Memphis ribs.

                                                                            I don't think there is any need for some "not cool enough" argument in the defense of BB. Some people like it. Some don't find it good at all. In your words, "just going with the gut." :-)

                                                                            1. re: Porthos

                                                                              It's a rookie (less than a generation) fad when bbq'ets still think patrons are looking for "fall off the bone" ribs so naturally they boil, bake then grill a few racks to get the charred look...none of the above mentioned should ever take place. Smoke rings are tried and true

                                                                              1. re: CharlesKochel

                                                                                As far as I know, by looking into the claim by some here that Baby Blues isn't smoking their ribs or pork butts, I have to say I think that those who say that are wrong. You can see in the DDD http://blip.tv/baby-blues-bbq/baby-bl... piece by Guy Fieri that the owners are showing him how they smoke the pork butts for their pulled pork using Guinness as one of their flavoring ingredients...

                                                                                I will say that they finish on the grill after smoking. Whether that meets the "purity" or "authenticity" standards of some here is of no concern to me.

                                                                                1. re: Servorg

                                                                                  Also, I think Baby Blues is more about NC pulled pork than ribs from its inception about a decade ago.

                                                                                  1. re: kevin

                                                                                    if baby blues made decent "non-authentic" barbecue, they'd be worth recommending, but they don't. a restaurant like smokin' jonny's is at least kinda yummy.

                                                                                  2. re: Servorg

                                                                                    "some here" aren't saying BB isn't smoking its meats. parboil and smoking aren't mutually exclusive.

                                                                                    unsure if relying on fieri reality tv clip as primary source passes too-cool-for-school litmus. the owner himself admitted to parboiling ribs to someone in which I have confidence. if a video of parboiling is necessary to serve as "actual" evidence, then there'll always only be a hung jury.

                                                                                    in the meantime, everyone feel free to chive on and enjoy that punny, porny que sauce.

                                                                                    of note, no one else in the thread, expert or otherwise, mentioned BBQ "purity" nor "authenticity". after all, the current revionist's low-n-slow definition of BBQ has already been debunked: http://www.amazingribs.com/BBQ_articl...

                                                                                    1. re: TonyC

                                                                                      yeah i'm gonna bookmark that

                                                                2. re: Dirtywextraolives

                                                                  I've only had BB's chicken wings and they are smoked and very good. Especially with their vinegar hot sauces. They are on discount at happy hour. Some of my favorite wings.

                                                              2. Has anyone else tried the ribs at Lenny's Smokehouse yet? It's in Chatsworth behind the reservoir. I liked the ribs and the beans

                                                                1 Reply
                                                                1. I am going to reiterate my recommendation of Tony Roma's.

                                                                  Go, eat, come back and bitch about how awful the ribs are.

                                                                  That way, at least, we can all agree that, yes, the BBQ at Tony Roma's sucks.

                                                                  1. Saturday BBQ at Pann's, ribs look fabulous, anyone tasted? If I don't read anything in the next few hours, road trip!

                                                                    5 Replies
                                                                      1. re: Dirtywextraolives

                                                                        looks like friday, saturday and sunday and holiday Monday's

                                                                        1. re: CharlesKochel

                                                                          Cool! I have to much thawed out to cook, so let me know how it is, maybe it'll scratch your BBQ itch!

                                                                          1. re: CharlesKochel

                                                                            That would be today then.

                                                                            Hit it up.

                                                                            And please report back.

                                                                            Btw. Central BBQ has no connection or affiliation with Interstate BBQ, correct ? I might have to hit up
                                                                            Charlie Vergos joint the next time I'm in those parts.

                                                                            1. re: kevin

                                                                              Correct, all seperate. Interesting though- many 'beal street' bbq joints share a smoker, so restaurants stay consistent & individualize with a finishing touch. keeps price low and authenticity real, Charlie vergos aka rendezvous will ship overnight, well worth it for the taste to ship to LA for an occasion, but not the best rendesvoux dey rub is best)The lbs. of ribs out per week is jaw dropping. Interstate is jim Neely's place. Not the best but good. When you get to those parts, central on central is the go to