BBQ Sauce

If you’re going to be in the Austin area, I highly recommend The Salt Lick. First choice would be the Driftwood location (character out the wazoo), but at least eat in the airport if it’s the only thing you can manage.

Mr. Sandwich got a bottle of their BBQ sauce for Christmas, and yesterday we cracked open a package of Costco pulled pork and adorned it with Salt Lick BBQ Sauce. Tasty stuff.

If you’re at home and in the mood for something a little less tangy, though (and I wouldn’t call the Salt Lick sauce vinegary, exactly, because I’m strongly anti-vinegary-BBQ-sauce, and I do like theirs), you might like Smokin’ Guns BBQ Sauce. It’s rich and flavorful, and both of us liked it a lot. And since I’m the one who bought the Smokin’ Guns sauce, I can tell you that their customer service rocks. Another winner!

Rib Ranch Bar-B-Que

Looking for good beef ribs? Rib Ranch Bar-B-Que on Topanga Canyon Boulevard hits the spot. The ribs were meaty and well-cooked; although the sauce is a little too sweet on its own (although better too sweet than too vinegary, if you ask me), it cooks into the meat just about perfectly.

Mr. Sandwich found his roast pork sandwich a little dry–he’s more of a fan of pulled pork–but apparently the pork ribs were also quite tasty.

The service was very good; our server let us know that some large orders were going in shortly, so that we could place ours in advance of those.

By the way, if you’re meeting people there, don’t just stop with the benches in the front room. Beyond the patio there’s another dining room, and your friends may be in there. Especially if it’s cold out, because the back dining room is warmer.

Hearty food and a cozy setting. What more can you ask of a winter meal?

Good Eats

This afternoon, Mr. Sandwich and I headed to Santa Monica for the Los Angeles BBQ Festival. The event was held in a parking lot at the base of the Santa Monica Pier. By the time we got there, three of the eight vendors were out of food–but that didn’t keep us from sampling several of the remaining options.

Two were from Missouri, and at least one of them still had food available. We decided, though, to concentrate on the local vendors so that we could go to the actual restaurants. Also, the line for the out-of-state style was incredibly long.

The weakest of the three was Baby Blues BBQ, with pork ribs. The ribs themselves were okay, but the sauce was so vinegary that it made me feel like I was on the verge of wheezing.

Mr. Cecil’s California Ribs had a fantastic beef rib and a hot link that was spicy, but not too hot. I’d definitely stop by their brick-and-mortar location for a full meal.

Our favorite was the BBQ Smoked Brick Chicken from Gus’s BBQ in South Pasadena. Flavorful, moist, tender–everything that BBQ chicken can be, and too often isn’t. We liked it so much, we went back for seconds.

Apparently when it comes to barbeque, Mr. Sandwich and I are like ravening beasts.

Thank goodness for wet towelettes.

Quincy’s BBQ

Quincy’s serves “the best BBQ under one woof,” which is a little cutesy. However, the pulled pork is quite good, and the chicken is really tender. After several trips up and down Ventura Boulevard–and a couple of meals at The Habit (excellent burgers, fries, and onion rings, BTW), we decided that Quincy’s was our next stop. Both food and service were good, and although it isn’t our favorite place in the Valley, it’s not half bad.

Oh, and we put an offer on a house. How’s that for burying the lede?

More Disappointing Than Tragic

What does a girl have to do to get a meatball sub in this town?

Yesterday J set out for adventures with friends, and these adventures included using the car, which meant that after my friend picked me up for coffee, I was on foot for most of the day.

For the portion of the day that included laundry, this was no big deal. However, when J called to say that he and his friends would be eating copious quantities of BBQ at the Bear Pit (previously discussed here), I realized that I would need my own hearty late lunch/early dinner.

One of our favorite local haunts is The Coop, a tiny hole-in-the-wall pizza place with no seating, cash-only sales, and amazing New York style pizza (New Yorkers, don’t start with me. It may not be exactly what you’re used to, due to the water–see, I know–but it’s good). Since J doesn’t like vegetables on his pizza, and I can’t eat oregano, we usually get a large pepperoni and Canadian bacon. That provides plenty of meat and avoids the sausage.

The Coop also makes excellent meatball subs. Their posted Saturday hours are 11-9, so I figured I’d call and place the order, then walk over and pick it up. But no one answered. That suggested that they might be closed, particularly given the holiday weekend. Just in case, though, I walked over and discovered that they were, indeed, closed. On the way back I stopped at the sandwich shop on the corner of Palms and Motor. I can’t remember it’s name, it’s changed ownership at least once since we moved here, it’s nothing special. And, as it turns out, they do not have meatball subs. I toyed momentarily with the idea of a Philly cheese steak sandwich, but then realized that I had no confidence in their ability to make one–and that it would not meet my needs. A cheese steak sandwich, no matter how good, is not a meatball sub.

From there, I headed over to Kristina’s Italian Kitchen, on Overland. Now, according to the Citysearch-provided menu, they do have a meatball parm sandwich. But their in-house menu showed no sandwiches at all (thanks a lot, Kristina’s!)

In the end, I came home and reheated the leftover portion of a chicken quesadilla from Baja Fresh.

Distance walked: 1.4 miles

Meatball subs eaten: 0

BBQ in the Valley

Last night we made our second trip to the Bear Pit. It’s not my favorite BBQ spot in the San Fernando Valley, but it’s a nice family place that is clearly a local favorite. I found the chicken and spare ribs a bit dry, but the beef ribs are good–as is the ham sandwich.

Another option, which I enjoyed on my one trip there (so far) is Dr. Hogly Wogly’s Tyler Texas BBQ. Both are on Sepulveda, but the Bear Pit is in the shadow of the 118 (literally), while Dr. Hogly Wogly’s is just south of Roscoe. On the whole, I think Dr. Hogly Wogly’s has better ribs and more tender meat (and brisket, which the Bear Pit does not offer–maybe brisket isn’t “Missouri style”).

But they both have great names.