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Gowanus BBQ: Fletcher's or Dinosaur?

fishermb Jul 6, 2013 01:22 PM

Despite living not too far away, I just don't get over to Gowanus very often. I love BBQ, and the menus at Fletcher's and Dinosaur look fairly comparable in terms of meat and side offerings, so I'm curious to hear which people prefer.

  1. r
    roux42 Jul 17, 2013 06:12 PM

    We like Fort Reno, a few blocks away from Dinosaur.

    1. j
      jimmyjazz Jul 15, 2013 07:04 PM

      Totally different vibe....I much prefer Fletcher's. Dinosaur is a chain, a relatively small and local(ish), but a chain nonetheless. It's a big place with a huge menu of serviceable ribs, wings and all kinds of combo plates for which you'll get a lot of food for your dollar. Fletcher's is a small place, locally owned, with high end meat which drives up the price a bit. While the brisket might be on the drier side, the burnt ends are outrageously good...basically brisket candy. Smoky ribs, brisket mac n cheese, pickled veggies, porky beans and a setting that doesn't feel like BBQ in Anytown, USA. I'll take Fletcher's.

      1 Reply
      1. re: jimmyjazz
        jon Jul 16, 2013 11:12 AM

        i'm all for supporting the little guy over a "chain" - if that's what you're calling Dinosaur - but unfortunately Fletcher's is too hit or miss (and too expensive to be hit or miss) to go to that often.

      2. egit Jul 11, 2013 09:13 AM

        I think brisket is hard to do. What I've heard about Fletcher's is they're inconsistent. I went for the first time a couple of weeks ago and the brisket *looked* great. It had about an 1/8th smoke ring, etc.

        But it was dry, dry, dry.

        Everything else was really good. I loved their pit-smoked beans. DGF got a couple of smoked meat tacos which were outstanding. I'd like to try some of Fletcher's other offerings. I'm sure they do good things, but I think brisket must not be their forte.

        I'm actually planning on going to Dino tomorrow night. I used to leave near-ish to Syracuse where they're originally from and had their 'cue a couple of times a year. But I haven't had anything from them in about a decade. I wouldn't say it's fair to classify them as a chain, like (god forbid) Dallas BBQ, but yeah, they probably have about 10 locations in the northeast at this point.

        Having said that, I would rather support Fletcher's for now, since they're new, independent and trying to scrape by. I like to root for the underdog! But I think their business isn't quite ironed out yet, hence their weird/maybe-exorbitant pricing. I'll just have something besides brisket for now. And order judiciously.

        3 Replies
        1. re: egit
          tex.s.toast Jul 11, 2013 09:51 AM

          Im generally as anti-chain as anybody but i think its a little unfair to dismiss Dinosaur (which i think comparing them to Dallas certainly counts as EDIT: just saw you werent comparing them) just because they have multiple locations.

          I actually feel like they (Dino) are a model for multi-location businesses - they may not do everything perfectly but they are producing "real" barbeque (wood-smoked, low temps) in a way that many independents arent even bothering with (Ft Reno).

          1. re: egit
            jon Jul 11, 2013 01:19 PM

            egit - if you want to try one of their non-brisket offerings, i highly suggest their duck taco. out of the handful of things we've had from them, that's been the most consistent/tastiest bite.

            ps: dinosaur's wings with wango tango sauce are my favorite wings in the city. used to live on them at the harlem location.

            1. re: jon
              egit Jul 11, 2013 01:53 PM

              Yes! That was one of the things DGF had when we went there. I know she got the duck, and I think the other may have been their tri-tip taco. They were both very good.

          2. b
            Barry Strugatz Jul 11, 2013 07:10 AM

            I understand that one of the great BBQ joints from Austin is opening up on Flatbush near the arena in the next year. Has anyone heard any details?

            2 Replies
            1. re: Barry Strugatz
              johnk Jul 11, 2013 07:47 AM


              1. re: Barry Strugatz
                rschwim Jul 13, 2013 12:47 AM

                Barry, it's on my block...

              2. n
                nafybean Jul 10, 2013 10:58 PM

                I can't speak for Fletcher's, but we were at Dinosaur 2 nights ago and really disliked it. I'm in love with brisket, and theirs was totally disappointing. Blue Smoke in Manhattan blows Dinosaur out of the water in terms of brisket. Dinosaur is like a big suburban chain restaurant - feels weird in Brooklyn. We walk by Fletcher's all the time and it's next on our list of BBQ to try, but I agree that it looks inappropriately pricey. Let us know how either one turns out!

                3 Replies
                1. re: nafybean
                  tex.s.toast Jul 11, 2013 08:44 AM

                  Dino's brisket is not their best work - for me i think they make a good slab of ribs, like the wings, and the sides.

                  Fletcher's pricing seems out of hand - 40 dollar slabs are just uncalled for (especially when it didnt seem like they were offering heritage or "name-brand" meats).

                  At least, to their credit, both Fletchers and Dino smoke over real wood, Ft Reno is using an oven outfitted with smoking capabilities, but it is not even close to the same thing. Good drinks, though.

                  Mighty Quinn's brisket currently holds my heart (and arteries).

                  1. re: tex.s.toast
                    nafybean Jul 12, 2013 11:45 PM

                    I had never heard of Mighty Quinn's (I'm new to NY) and just checked them out online - Holy Smokes! That brisket looks incredible. Thanks for the tip!

                    1. re: tex.s.toast
                      BackyardChef Oct 2, 2013 05:26 PM

                      They are all heritage breed, humane and sustainable meats. Most are locally sourced from small farms.

                  2. p
                    parkslopemama Jul 10, 2013 08:35 PM

                    Wow, I'm pleasantly surprised to see that someone else prefers Dinosaur to Fletchers. I thought Fletchers was a chowhound favorite, but it's over-rated and over-priced. Same with Fort Reno.

                    1. jon Jul 8, 2013 07:10 AM

                      i'd say dinosaur, mainly for consistency. we like fletchers, but some days the meats are nicely cooked and juicy, and others, like yesterday, everything is dried out and tough.

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