I love food. Andrew knows that the way to entice me to visit a new establishment is to show me the menu first. If the food sounds good enough, I'm sold. He also knows that I love barbecue, so what better way to spend Mother's Day than trying out a new (to us) barbecue place?
Barbecue tastes like my childhood home. One summer my dad barbecued hamburgers every Sunday and I took cold hamburgers for lunch every day for the rest of the week. We would celebrate anything we could with barbecued chicken, smoked ham, venison, whatever. The family recipe for barbecue sauce was ketchup, Worcestershire sauce, onion and garlic powder, and whatever other spices seemed interesting, all added in unmeasured quantities. Our tasty meats were usually accompanied by potato salad and grilled corn. I didn't start eating the cole slaw side until I had a barbecue sandwich from Corky's Barbecue in Memphis where they put the slaw on the sandwich. I've slawed my sandwich since.
Even though times are tight, he thought we should have one splurge at a barbecue place near our theater. The selling point: it smelled good outside. We went inside and ordered the cheapest meals on the menu - the sandwich platters (one sandwich and one side) for $9.75 each. I expect a lot out of a $10 sandwich, especially when I can go to the grocery store for a bucket of shredded pork in sauce that lasts two meals for two people for about $7. This sliced pork should be amazing. We got a side of cole slaw to decorate our sandwiches and a side of potato salad, then a couple beers to chase it. Our meal totaled $30, so our expectations were high.
The best part of the meal (besides eating to "Get Off" by Prince playing on the juke box) was the beer. I tasted Shock Top for the first time at the JM concert in March. The barbecue sauce was decent, and I liked how they solved the exploding white bread problem from the weight of the barbecue with an extra slice of bread in the middle of the sandwich. I did not like how the cuts of meat were at least half fat. The edges of my bread looked like there were slices of wet bacon. It definitely wasn't worth $9.75. I peeled the wet bacon parts from the edges of the bread to take home to dogs so I got some value from them. The sandwich was good without the wet bacon but I could've made something better (and cheaper and meatier) at home. And the potato salad was the same straight-out-of-the-carton stuff we served at Magic Springs when I was fourteen.
I have a feeling we won't be returning to give this place a second chance. We're not masochists. I'm really looking forward to my Texas trip next week so I can get some real Southern barbecue.