Sunday, December 31, 2017

Q39 in Kansas City, Missouri

Q39 brisket sandwich
Happy New Year!  Today I visited Q39 for lunch.  It was my first time visiting this restaurant and I decided to visit the original location near Westport.  Q39 opened in April of 2014.  

According to their website,"Rob Magee got hooked on cooking at an early age and took his skills to the highest level with a degree from the acclaimed Culinary Institute of America. Working his trade in some of the finest kitchens across the country, he would always make it a point to honor the tastes of whatever region he was in. So when he moved to Kansas City, he naturally became obsessed with mastering the glories of KC barbeque.

While still working as executive chef for Hilton, he assembled a competition team in his spare time called the Munchin Hogs.  They didn’t just enter contests for fun, they ascended to the highest level of competitive barbeque in events across the country against the toughest teams — the real major leagues. Over a ten-year span they won a whole array of competitions and national championships. And Rob never tired of learning, honing  his skill as an explorer of tastes and flavors, devising original sauces and rubs, always experimenting further and always using only the finest scratch ingredients. Competition barbeque is distinctive in that it’s all about serving food to finicky judges at its optimal window of perfection. Techniques for maintaining moisture, for example, had to be mastered that go far beyond the capabilities of most barbeque joints."  To read more, check out their website.

Q39 has received the most "buzz" among barbecue places in Kansas City since Joe's KC arrived on the scene.  The most asked question I get as a barbecue blogger is whether or not I have tried Q39 and what I thought of it.  I purposely put off going for a while so I could try a lot of other places first, but I decided to visit today to see if it lived up to the hype.

I arrived around 11:15 on Sunday, about 15 minutes after they opened.  This is a traditional sit-down restaurant where they seat you and you are served by a waiter or waitress.  There are two bar areas and I decided to sit at one of the bars.  The restaurant was a little more than half full when I arrived and by the time I left the line was out the door waiting for a table.  This place does quite the business!

I was waited on instantly by the bartender.  He was very nice and went over the menu for me even though I already knew what I wanted.  I have heard the wings were good here, so I wanted to try them as well as the brisket.  So I ordered the wings, which are Chipolte BBQ, and a brisket sandwich.  

Over time I've seen a lot of posts on Facebook from people asking for recommendations of who has the best wings in Kansas City.  Almost every time at least one person says Q39.  Because of that, since I love wings, I was always curious and wanted to try them here.  While the wings were decent, they were very messy, fatty and chewy.  If someone tells you they are the best wings in Kansas City either they are crazy or they haven't eaten wings at very many places.

Q39 wings
I finished the wings off and a couple of minutes later my brisket sandwich was delivered.  I received it about 20 minutes after I ordered.  The sandwich is served on a bun with thick cut, neatly trimmed slices of brisket.  Their sauce is served on the side.  I took my first bite and was disappointed that the meat was just lukewarm.  The meat was tender and had a nice crunchy bark on it, but I didn't find the it very flavorful.  I removed a piece of brisket from the sandwich so I could try the sauce.  The sauce was pretty decent.  Just a bit sweet, but not overpowering.

Overall I was a bit disappointed.  I've seen people online and in person rave about this place, but it didn't live up to the hype for me.  Don't get me wrong.  It wasn't bad.  But it wasn't a place  I would rave about and tell my friends they have to try.  Guess I've been to too many good barbecue places already that I was a bit numb to Q39.  If you serve me a barbecue sandwich that is room temperature or just lukewarm, sorry, I'm not going to give it a great review.  These are just my thoughts.  I'm interested to hear what my readers think about it.

Just a side note.  This restaurant is very loud.  They cram as many people as possible into the dining room.  A few times the bartender was talking to me and I couldn't hear him because it was so loud.  If you're looking for a nice quiet lunch or dinner, this probably isn't the place to go.

This is number 33 on my quest to find the best barbecue in Kansas City.  Four more visits and I reach the halfway point.  I'm wondering if there is anyone out there that has either tried doing this or has actually visited every barbecue restaurant in town?  If so, I haven't heard of it.  I'm going to try to visit every place within a years time.  My first visit was June 8th, 2017.  I'll have to pick up the pace if I'm going to do it, but I think I can.

Thanks for reading.  Till next time....

Monday, December 18, 2017

Rosedale Barbecue in Kansas City, Kansas

Rosedale Barbecue brisket sandwich
Tonight I visited Rosedale Barbecue on Southwest Boulevard in Kansas City, MO.  Rosedale has been a barbecue staple in Kansas City since 1934.  From their website, "Founded by Anthony Rieke and wife Alda and brother- in-law Anthony "Tony" Sieleman on July 4, 1934, Rosedale Barbecue began as a neighborhood hot dog and beer stand known as "The Bucket Shop." At The Bucket Shop you could buy a half-gallon bucket full of the coldest beer in town for a quarter. 

Beer had just been made legal for a short time and the Rieke’s and Sieleman believed they could make a few pennies selling beer…but it wasn’t hot dogs that the partners craved. It was barbecue. On the way home each night they could smell "Fatty" Sharp’s smoking meats a half-mile down the road. "…and Fatty and his wife would get to arguing, it was like going to a show," Rieke said. So the following summer with $183 and some pocket change between them, the partners decided to start a new business about 100 feet from their beer stand. They paid their first months rent, bought a $20 occupation license, and their first 16 gallon keg of beer, nailed some tin siding on a 12 by 16 foot frame, moved in and fired up their first barbecue pit. During their first winter, they added sheets of plywood to the inside walls to help keep the customers warm at the nine-seat counter.

"It was 1935 and there was no refrigeration in those days. There was an icehouse down the street so we’d go over there and get a 300lb. block of ice for 75 cents and carry it back over. …that would make it sell, having it cold, real cold. And then people would get hungry while drinking beer. It worked together." (Anthony Rieke)

The venture that was intended to help the partners survive the hardships of the Great Depression turned out to be an American Dream come true for them. As the years passed, business grew as well as the barbecue: initially with the 12’ x 16’ building and then with Rieke’s development of the first practical commercial rotisserie barbecue oven. "I had to make sure the meat would cook evenly so I did a test run personally. I crawled in and rode around in it kind of like a carousel, and it all worked out just fine."

When asked what it takes to stay successful in the barbecue business for over 70 years, especially in a town known for barbecue, the family jokes " We just have a different genetic composition …we have smoke running through our veins." (Marisha Smith) The customers say that it is the value, service and continuous tradition over the years that keeps them returning for more."

You can read more about their history by visiting their website at

I arrived around 4:30 on Monday.  This is a place where you order at the counter and they serve you right there and then seat yourself.  I ordered a brisket sandwich on a bun and fries and my order was ready within a minute.  It was about ten dollars for everything.  Very fast and friendly service.  I grabbed a water at the self serve station and had a seat.  They also have a self serve barbecue sauce station right next to the water station.

The brisket was served as thinly cut slices on a hoagie style bun.  You can order the sandwich on bread slices or on a bun.  The sandwich was served with a little bit of sauce on it.  It was warm and tender but didn't have much flavor to it.  They have two sauces to choose from.  Their standard sauce was good.  Just the right amount of sweetness.  The second sauce is their spicy sauce and it had quite a kick to it.  It was hot!  Made my tongue and throat tingle.  I couldn't handle too much of the spicy sauce, so I used the standard sauce to dip my fries in.  The fries were crinkle cut fries.

Rosedale seems to get good reviews overall and they've been around a very long time.  I thought it was a good sandwich, not great.  Kind of a neat place with very fast and friendly service.

This is stop number 32 on my quest.  I'm going to try to get another stop in this week since I've been lagging a bit.  Let me know about your experiences at Rosedale.  Till next time....

Friday, December 8, 2017

Bates City Bar B Que of Shawnee

Bates City brisket sandwich
Today I visited Bates City Bar-B-Que of Shawnee.  It is located on the Southeast corner of Shawnee Mission Parkway and Quivira in a strip mall.  According to their website, Bates City of Shawnee is a father and son operation that has been going strong in Shawnee for over 17 years.

I arrived around 11:40 on Friday.  There is a lot of "stuff" on the walls in this place.  License plates, sports memorabilia and posters, etc.  This is a restaurant where you order at the counter and they serve your food right there.  Grab a tray, order, and pay.  Pretty simple!  The setup reminds me of how you order at Joe's KC or Arthur Bryants.  I ordered a brisket sandwich and fries.  Received my order very quickly.  My bill was around ten dollars, which is pretty good for a brisket sandwich and fries.

I had a seat in a booth and dug right in.  I was pretty disappointed in the sandwich.  It is served with sauce on it and the brisket is thinly cut.  The meat was room temperature, which I would call "cold," and was very bland, even with the sauce.  The meat was tender but a bit chewy and had way too much sauce on it for my taste.  The sauce was also pretty sweet compared to other places, and you all know by now that I don't like sweet barbecue sauce.

The fries are shoestring style and were pretty good.  They do serve a huge helping of fries, which is a plus.  The sandwich is also a pretty hefty serving of brisket.

Bates City fries
This makes visit number 31 on my quest.  Don't forget to follow along on my Facebook page if you haven't already.  Till next time...

Thursday, November 30, 2017

Fritz's Meat & Superior Sausage in Leawood, Kansas

Fritz's brisket sandwich.
Today I visited Fritz's Meat & Superior Sausage off of 435 and State Line in Leawood.  Fritz's Meat & Superior Sausage was established by Fritz and Rose Plapp on 39th St in Kansas City in 1927.Outgrowing the first location, Fritz's was moved to State Line Road in 1969 to their new  facility.  They are now in the 4th generation of family members running the market.

I had never been to this place before today.  It's quite an interesting place.  Half meat market and half restaurant.  They have a wide selection of meats, sausages and cheese.  They also serve hot barbecue sandwiches.  This is a restaurant where you order at the counter and they serve your food right there and they have about five or six tables where you can sit and eat.

I ordered their barbecue brisket sandwich and a drink.  They have a self serve drink station and by the time I got my drink my sandwich was ready.  It is served on a bun doused with barbecue sauce and wrapped in tin foil.  I sat down at a table and unwrapped it and stared at it for a second while I figured out how I was going to eat it.  It is a huge serving of meat, but also a very messy sandwich as you can see by the picture.  I tried picking it up and taking a bite, but found out that wasn't really going to work too well.  I ended up getting a fork and eating some of the brisket before I could pick up the sandwich and eat it with my hands.

The brisket was hot and tender, but I couldn't really judge the flavor because there was so much sauce on it.  The barbecue sauce they use is their own brand and is just a standard sauce that you might get anywhere.  I didn't order any sides.  When I finished the sandwich I went up to the counter and ordered some sausage sticks and took those home with me.  I tried a stick and the sausage is very good.  I'm from Wisconsin and nothing beats the sausage you can get up there, but I liked this sausage.  Better than anything you could get in any grocery store around here.

This was a good sandwich, but very messy and doused with barbecue sauce.  There was so much brisket on it that most people would be able to split this sandwich into two meals!

This makes visit number 30 on my barbecue quest.  Don't forget to follow along on my Facebook page and share with your friends that might be interested.  Thank you!  Till next time....

Monday, November 20, 2017

Little Pig BBQ in Belton, Missouri

Little Pig BBQ brisket sandwich
Tonight I visited the Little Pig BBQ in Belton, Missouri.  Established in 2010, The Little Pig is located at the far east end of Belton's historic old downtown Main Street.  According to their website, "The Little Pig BBQ is an experience in pit barbeque and down-home, old fashioned barbeque the way it used to be. Nothin' fancy here… just award winning barbeque smoked daily and served up fresh."

I arrived around 5:00 on Monday.  This is a restaurant where you order at the counter and seat yourself and they bring your food out to you.  The building looks like a residential home from the outside and the sign is pretty small, so make sure you put it in your GPS or you might drive right by it.  The small dining room seats around 25 people.  I ordered their large brisket sandwich, fries and a drink and my order was around sixteen dollars.  They have a self-serve drink station, which is nice.  Once I ordered I found a table and waited about 10 minutes for them to bring me my food.

The brisket was served on a hamburger bun shredded with sauce on it.  It was a really good sized sandwich.  I took a bite and my first thought was that there was too much sauce on the sandwich.  The meat was tough and chewy and I couldn't really taste the flavor of the meat because it was doused with sauce.  I'm not a fan of the shredded beef sandwich because not only is it a messy sandwich, but you don't get as much flavor as you do with sliced brisket.  The sandwich was also only luke warm when they served it.

There are two kinds of sauces that they offer, a regular sauce and a spicier sauce.  I tried both with my fries.  The regular sauce was a standard barbecue sauce with a small spicy kick to it.  The spicy sauce obviously had more of a kick, but wasn't too spicy at all.  I preferred the spicy sauce.  The fries were served baked potato wedge cut.

The restaurant looks like a home from the outside.
This was my first visit to Belton on my quest and was stop number 29 overall.  Another milestone reached, as I'm 40% done!

I hate that it's starting to get dark so early!  The picture turned out ok though.
Please follow along on my Facebook page and share with your friends that might be interested.  Thank you!  Till next time....

Monday, November 13, 2017

The Big Q Barbecue in Kansas City, KS

The Big Q brisket sandwich
Today I visited The Big Q Barbecue in Kansas City, Kansas near 34th and Steele Rd.  According to their website, "The Big Q Barbecue is a long line of traditional Quick's family Barbecue, which started in 1953.  In 1986 Rusty Quick, Marvin's son, and Gary Wright, Marvin's son-in-law, started the Big Q Barbecue in Maple Hill.  

Rusty started working at the 7th St Barbecue when he was 10 years old busing tables doing dishes and learning the business from the ground up, working evenings and weekends through the school year. In 1979 Gary started working in the family business and learning the trade so that by 1986 both Rusty and Gary broke away and started The Big Q Barbecue."

I arrived around 4:00 on Monday for a late lunch/early dinner.  I was the only one in the restaurant at the time I arrived.   This is a sit down restaurant where you choose where you want to sit and a waitress serves you.  My waitress was quick to greet me and give me a menu and take my drink order.  In looking at the menu, I noticed their beef brisket sandwich does not come with a side dish, so I ordered their brisket sandwich with a side of their spicy fries.  I received my order about five minutes after placing the order.

The sandwich is served with barbecue sauce on it on a large bun.  When I took the first bite I noticed the meat was a bit bland and chewy and almost a little stale tasting like it had been sitting out a while.  I will say, however, that they do a good job of trimming the fat on the meat.  There were no pieces of fat in the sandwich.  They also give you a pretty large serving of meat.  The brisket is cut into thin slices and they do not douse the sandwich with sauce, so you can really taste the meat.  The meat was a bit dry but the sauce helped with that.  Overall I was kind of disappointed with the taste of the sandwich, but the serving size and lack of fat helped make up for it.

Spicy fries
They have two barbecue sauces to choose from.  A regular sauce and a spicy sauce.  The regular sauce was a bit bland and kind of tasted like ketchup with some spices in it.  The spicy sauce was pretty mild as well and only had a slight kick to it.  I'd recommend the spicy sauce if you are going to eat the barbecue here.

The spicy fries were served waffle style and weren't overly spicy.  I ate them with the spicy sauce and the sauce complemented the fries pretty well.

This is the second time I have visited this restaurant, but the first time since starting my quest.  They've been going strong since 1986, just over 30 years now.  

This is stop number 28 on my quest.  One more stop and I will have visited 40% of the barbecue places in the city.  Still a ways to go!  Please follow along on my Facebook page as well and share with your friends that might be interested.  Thanks!  Till next time...

Thursday, November 2, 2017

Blind Box Barbecue in Shawnee, Kansas

Blind Box Barbecue brisket sandwich.
Tonight I visited Blind Box Barbecue in Shawnee, KS.  Blind Box is a relatively new restaurant, opened by Joe Tulipana in August of 2015.  According to the Kansas City Star, "Tulipana, 27, earned a civil engineering degree from the University of Missouri-Columbia in 2012. After working in IT, he spent a few months converting a former Japanese steakhouse into Blind Box Barbecue, naming it after the “blind boxes” teams submit to judges in competitions. He opened it in August 2015.
His menu includes both classic and innovative items: burnt ends, baby back ribs and chicken, as well as the Lil’ Juicy signature sandwich (smoked, shaved steak topped with caramelized onions and Swiss cheese and served with a horseradish cream sauce), barbecue nachos and wontons, Hog Wings (pork shanks tossed in a spicy chili and honey glaze) and barbecue sweet corn."

Blind Box is a sit down restaurant and bar.  They tout their bourbon cocktails just as much as their barbecue. I arrived around 5:00 on Thursday.  I walked in and noticed the bar near the front of the restaurant and was instantly greeted and seated at a booth.  The server asked for my drink order and went over a few of the menu items for me.  They have a regular and a large brisket sandwich that comes with fries.   I ordered the large sandwich, which is 12 dollars, along with a brandy Old Fashioned.

Blind Box brandy old fashioned.
I received my food in about 15 minutes.  The brisket was thick cut slices and was served on a bun with sauce.  The brisket was warm and tender and I could detect a slight hickory smoke flavor.  The meat was also very lean, containing little or no fat.  A very good sandwich overall.

The sauce has a strong molasses flavor and had a little bit of a kick to it.  I really liked it and ate it with my fries.

No label on the sauce!

I really enjoyed this place.  The bourbon bar is a nice touch and they have some pretty good barbecue.  I'd definitely check it out if you're in the area.

This is stop number 27 on my quest.  I've started a Facebook page so you can follow along there as well.  Thanks for your support and positive encouragement.  Till next time....

Saturday, October 28, 2017

Smokey's on the Blvd BBQ in Overland Park, Kansas - Take Two

One of the things I enjoy about my quest is my chance to meet and correspond with the many small business owners that run all of these great barbecue places.  As a former small business owner myself, I understand what it's like to take the plunge and go out on your own.  I also enjoy discussing their stories and finding out more about how they came to do what they do.

The new owner of Smokey's, Winston Riley, contacted me after I posted my latest blog and provided some additional information that I think will be helpful to my readers.

Winston is a graduate of the Culinary Institute of Technology and has a 40 year career in fine dining.  When I visited Smokey's, I noticed a LOT of hickory logs out front of the restaurant.  Winston said that they smoke their brisket for eight hours and wrap it four hours into the cook to give it the smoke flavor and smoke ring.  To fully savor the smoke flavor, make sure you order the brisket without sauce.  He also mentioned that they trim the fat to make it a lean cut, which I definitely noticed and pointed out in the blog post.  Thank you, Winston, for clarifying a few of these items for me.


I've picked up a lot of new readers since I started this quest and I hope you are enjoying following along with my journey.  The goal for me is to find the best barbecue in Kansas City and I'm doing that by visiting every barbecue restaurant in the Kansas City area.  I'll refer you to my first blog post that explains what I am doing.  I'm trying the brisket at each place because brisket is the most difficult cut of meat to "get right" from my own personal experience.  If someone can cook a great brisket, most likely everything else there is great as well.

As I said when I started, I'm not a professional writer nor a professional food critic.  I'm an amateur griller and barbecue fanatic that has done relatively well in local food competitions that I've entered.  I grill or smoke meat about five nights a week out on my deck, even in the winter.  I've always loved it.  That's about where my qualifications for this end.  I'm just a guy trying to find the best barbecue in town and figured the only way to do it is to visit each restaurant and then decide.  I rank them as I go and when I'm done I will make a list of my top 10 and we will have events at each place so everyone can go try their barbecue.  Everyone is invited to join.  Obviously I'm not getting paid for this and I don't contact the restaurants in any way before I visit.  I don't want them to know who I am until after I visit.  Part of the fun of this is making a lot of new friends along the way, which I have already done.

I hope you continue to follow me on my quest.  Thanks again for reading, following and sharing.
Till next time....

Thursday, October 26, 2017

Smokey's on the Blvd BBQ in Overland Park, Kansas

Smokey's brisket sandwich and sweet potato fries.
Tonight I visited Smokey's on the Blvd. BBQ in Overland Park, KS.  Smokey's has been around since 2012 and started as the father and son barbecue team of Rob and Jason Harris.  They are located in south Overland Park at 145th and Metcalf near the Tanner's and Jose Peppers on the southeast corner in the strip mall.

I arrived around 5:30 on Thursday.  They weren't very busy at this time, as there was only one other customer in the place.  This is a restaurant where you order at the counter and you seat yourself and they bring your food out to you.  Their dining room is fairly small and seats around 30 people.

I ordered a brisket sandwich and sweet potato fries.  My bill was around eleven dollars.  I got my drink at the self-serve drink station and found a booth to sit in.  About five minutes later they brought my food out to me.

The sandwich is served on a toasted hoagie style bun with sauce on it.  Since the bun is pretty soft, I'd characterize it more as a brat bun than a hoagie bun.  The brisket was warm and really tender.  I really couldn't detect a smoke flavor to the meat because of the sauce, but I did notice a nice smoke ring on it.  The sandwich went down really well due to the tenderness of the meat.  Overall it was a good sandwich.  They do a good job trimming the fat from the meat, as there was little fat.

They have two barbecue sauces that I tried, a regular sauce and a hot sauce.  The regular sauce was a tad sweet but did not have a kick to it at all.  The hot sauce had a bit of a kick to it, but not overpowering.  I preferred it to the regular sauce.

The sweet potato fries were waffle fries and had a nice flavor to them.

My Smokey's selfie!
I'll definitely go back to Smokey's to try their other menu items.  It's a nice little neighborhood barbecue place.

This makes visit number 26 on my quest.  46 more to go!  Till next time....

Thursday, October 19, 2017

Burnt End BBQ in Overland Park, KS

Burnt End BBQ brisket sandwich.
Tonight I visited Burnt End BBQ in Overland Park, KS.  Burnt End BBQ got its start in 2011 and has been at its current location on the corner of 119th and Metcalf since 2014.  I have been there once before but went tonight to try the brisket as part of my barbecue quest.

I arrived around 5:15 Thursday evening.  They weren't too busy at this time, as there were only three people eating at tables as I walked in and I'd estimate it seats about 50 people.  This is is a restaurant where you order at the counter and you seat yourself and they bring your food out to you.  I ordered a large brisket sandwich and fries and my bill was around eleven dollars.  They have a self serve drink station and by the time I got my drink and sat down they were bringing my food to me.

The brisket is thick cut and served on a toasted hoagie bun without sauce.  The brisket had a great smoky flavor and a nice smoke ring.  The meat was a bit dry and chewy and was too dry to eat on that bun with no sauce on it so I only ate a few bites without sauce before putting some of their original sauce on it to finish the sandwich.

Burnt End sauces.
They have three sauces at each table that you can try.  Their "Original" sauce is sweet with a small kick to it and has a brown sugar flavor.  Their "Thick and Bold" sauce had a strong molasses and smoke flavor to it.  It's my favorite of the three and a really good sauce with no kick to it at all.  The third of their sauces is the "Spicy Southwest," which has a bigger kick to it than their original sauce and is made with green chili peppers.  The french fries were standard fries that you would get at any fast food joint and were nothing special.

This was visit number 25 on my barbecue quest.  Although one of my ground rules was to not include any chain restaurants other than local chains, I decided to include this one. It is part of a larger restaurant group called PB&J, but this is the only barbecue place in the chain.  They own other restaurants in the area such as YaYa's and Red Robin.

Thank you for reading and following along.  Please feel free to share any of my posts on social media and "like" my Facebook page.  Till next time...

Thursday, October 12, 2017

Woodyard Bar-B-Que in Kansas City, KS

Woodyard Bar-B-Que brisket sandwich.
Today I visited Woodyard Bar-B-Que in Kansas City, Kansas.  Woodyard is located off I-635 and Merriam Drive.  According to their website, they have been at their Merriam location since the late 1950's.  Woodyard Bar-B-Que started with Frank Schloegel II working his grill at lunch, feeding his customers and his friends for free, while he sold wood deliveries over the phone. Frank Schloegel III kept it going in the same spirit of generosity and started smoking for charities and church fundraisers. Eventually he gave in to multiple requests and opened the restaurant.  They've been a staple of the community ever since.

I arrived around 5:10 on Thursday evening.  This is a restaurant where you order at the counter and they bring your food out to your table.  They also have a self-serve drink station inside.  There are only a couple of tables in the main building where you order, but there are two additional buildings connected to it that may have had additional indoor seating but they were closed today.  Most of the seating is outside.

I ordered their brisket sandwich and fries and got my drink and sat at one of the tables.  My bill was $11.90.  There were only two other people in the restaurant when I arrived, so it was a good time to go.  Within a couple minutes they brought my sandwich to me.

The sandwich was served without sauce.  The brisket was thinly sliced and was warm but a bit tough and bland.  It was juicy enough to make the bun soggy, but didn't have much of a taste to it.  It actually tasted like a brisket you would make in a crock pot.  I would doubt that's how they prepare it, but that's what it tasted like.  I finished the sandwich without putting any sauce on it, but pulled a couple slices of beef off so I could try their sauces.

They have an original sauce and another sauce that they call their "hot" sauce.  The original sauce is sweet with a molasses taste to it.  It's a good sauce overall.  The hot sauce only had a little bit of kick to it.  I wouldn't classify it as "hot" personally, but it did have more of a kick to it than their original sauce.

The fries they served were shoestring cut.  They were flavorful with a little bit of seasoning on them.  I ate them with the hot barbecue sauce.  I noticed on their menu that they highlight their smoked hot wings.  You can order as little as one of them and they advertise them as jumbo wings, so I ordered one.  The wing was chewy, as was the skin.  The meat did have a smoky flavor to it, but I wouldn't classify it as a spicy or hot buffalo-style wing.

Woodyard's smoked hot wing.
Woodyard's has been featured on quite a few food television shows.  They were featured on Guy Fieri’s "Diners, Drive-Ins and Dives" on July 12th 2012, Anthony Bourdain’s "No Reservations" April 16th of 2012, Andrew Zimmern’s "Delicious Destinations" on November 24th 2015 and "Nigella Lawson’s Christmas Special" on December 11th, 2015.

Signs showing all the television shows they've been featured on.
This makes number 24 on my quest.  I've got 1/3 of my visits completed now.  A lot more to go, so stay tuned!  Till next time....

My Woodyard's selfie.  I was staring into the sun!

Thursday, October 5, 2017

B.B.'s Lawnside BBQ in Kansas City, Missouri

"The Big One."
Today I visited B.B.'s Lawnside BBQ in Kansas City, Missouri.  The owner, Lindsay Shannon, and his wife Jo opened B.B.'s in October of 1990.  B.B.'s main focus is barbecue, but Lindsay is a big fan of blues music and they have live music Thursday through Sunday evenings.

I arrived around 5:00 on Thursday.  When I parked and got out of the car the smell of barbecue and the smoker engulfed me.  Enough that my mouth started watering!   I walked in and was their first customer of the evening and I decided to sit at the bar.  They have picnic table style seating along with the full bar.  I'd guess their dining area can seat between 60 and 80 people, so it's pretty good sized.  When I sat down I  was waited on instantly.  I looked at the menu and ordered the large beef sandwich, which they call "The Big One."  You can have it on bread or on a bun and I decided to try it on a bun.  The sandwich is served with fries and costs $9.99.  This sandwich ended up being the best bargain on my journey so far.

I received the sandwich about five minutes after ordering.  This is a humongous sandwich!  It was served with their standard sauce on it with three strips of their battered fries.  The meat was thinly sliced, had an excellent smoky flavor and had a very nice smoke ring.  It was hot and a bit chewy, but the taste of the meat made up for the chewiness.  I could barely finish this monster of a sandwich and I can eat!  I'd estimate about 70% of people would have lunch and maybe dinner the next day in leftovers after ordering this sandwich.

They have two sauces, a standard sauce and a spicy sauce.  I would characterize the standard sauce as a generic barbecue sauce that you would get anywhere.  It is not sweet and has only a slight kick to it.  The spicy sauce had a kick to it and made my tongue tingle for a bit.  It is not overpowering spicy, but just the right amount of spice for my taste.  I overheard the bartender telling someone that every employee that works there eats the food with the spicy sauce because it's not "really" spicy.  I'd concur that it was my favorite of the two sauces.

The sandwich came with three large strips of battered fries.  They were a bit unique from the fries I've had anywhere else.  Kind of reminded me of a small baked potato cut in three slices.  They were pretty good overall.

My BB's Selfie!
I had never been to BB's before, but I'm glad I found it.  Like I mentioned, it's definitely the best buy I've had so far for what you spend and the amount of food you get.  I'll definitely go back to try some other menu items.

This makes visit number 23 on my quest.  Only about 50 more to go!  Till next time....

Friday, September 29, 2017

LC's Bar-B-Que in Kansas City, Missouri

LC's brisket sandwich and fries
Today I decided to try LC's Bar-B-Que in Raytown, Missouri.  The owner of LC's, LC Richardson, was a company chef for Farmland Industries until the early 80's and retired and opened LC's Bar-B-Que in 1986.  They've been going strong ever since.

I arrived around 1:30 on Friday afternoon.  If you decide to visit, make sure you put this one in your GPS or you might drive right past it.  It's on a sharp corner of a curve in the road.  There are only a handful of parking spots and I was lucky enough to snag one. When I walked in the building the first thing I noticed was the large smoker right behind the counter.  Nice!  This is a little hole-in-the-wall dive that seats about 15-20 people.

"The Pit" is located right behind the counter.
This is a restaurant where you order at the counter, they serve you right there, and then you seat yourself.  I ordered a brisket sandwich with fries.  My bill was $11.38.  I received my food almost instantly and found a table.  By the time I sat down the line was out the door about 15 people deep, so I arrived at just the right time to not have to wait.

The brisket sandwich is served on slices of bread with a bottom layer of bread, a layer of brisket, another layer of bread, brisket on top of that and topped with another layer of bread.  This is a huge sandwich!  A very generous portion of meat.  The sandwich was served with sauce on it.  The meat was warm and tender with a good flavor and a crunchy bark.  However, the meat was a bit chewy with some pieces of fat in it.  Even though it had a good smoke flavor, it was too chewy for my taste.

They didn't douse the sandwich with their sauce, (which is a good thing), so to adequately review the sauce I tried it with my fries.  They only have one sauce flavor and it's a little sweet with a slight brown sugar taste to it.  After just one visit I have become a fan of their sauce.  The fries are fresh cut and I was a bit disappointed in the consistency.  They give a large serving but some of the fries were overdone, some were underdone, (almost raw), and some were soggy.  I ate them anyway!

LC's rub.  I didn't try it, but I did snap a picture.
I'm glad I found this place.  It's a really good place to stop at if you're in the area.  They're close to the stadiums and are open on Chiefs Sundays.

Someone ditched a mattress in the wooded area right across the road from LC's.  Hey, it's part of the experience!
I love that they have their smoker right behind the counter and every time they open it the place fills with smoke that makes your mouth water.  It really adds to the experience at this place.

This makes visit number 22 on my quest!  Another milestone reached, as I've reached 30% of the list completed!  Thanks to all my readers for all the great questions and comments.  It helps keep me motivated to complete this!  Till next time....

My LC's selfie!

Friday, September 22, 2017

Roscoe's Barbecue in Edwardsville, Kansas

Roscoe's Barbecue brisket sandwich and fries.
I met my buddy Frank for lunch today at Roscoe's Barbecue in Edwardsville, KS.  Roscoe's started as a competition barbecue team many years ago and competed in contests across the country.  The restaurant in Edwardsville opened in 2009 and has been going strong ever since.  According to their website, they use hickory, apple and cherry wood in their smoker, giving their meat a distinct smoky flavor.  They use a unique rub on their meats which is a combination of spices from all around the country.

I arrived just after noon on Friday.  This is a restaurant where you order at the counter, they give you a drink cup to fill at the self-serve drink station, and you choose a table and they deliver your food to you.  The main restaurant probably seats about 20-25 people, so it's obviously not very big.  It was hard to find a parking spot out front as well.  Kind of a hole in the wall kind of place, but it was pretty nice on the inside.

I ordered a large brisket sandwich and fries.  My bill was $11.17.  You have the option to order the sandwich on a bun instead of bread. I didn't pay enough attention to the menu when I ordered and I didn't even realize that you had a choice between bread and a bun so I received my sandwich on bread.  I received my food about 10-15 minutes after placing the order.   The sandwich is served as slices of brisket with their sauce on the sandwich.  The meat was warm and tender with a nice smoky hickory flavor and a crispy bark with a nice tasting rub on it.  After a few bites the sandwich got a little dry, but the taste of the meat made up for it.  I was afraid the bread might get soggy, but it really didn't so I was glad about that.

I tried their sauce on my fries.  The sauce is pretty sweet and has a molasses flavor to it.  It was a bit too sweet for my taste, but it's definitely a unique barbecue sauce and I don't remember tasting anything quite like it before.  The fries were standard fries you would get at most places and didn't have any kind of seasoning on them.

I hate selfies, but what the heck.  I liked the sign.
If you've never been to Roscoe's, make sure you put it in the GPS or you might accidentally drive right by it like I did!  It's in between a gas station and an auto shop on the south side of 32 highway in Edwardsville right off of 435.  I'm glad I found this place, as they have good barbecue and it's relatively close to The Legends, which I visit occasionally.

This is visit number 21 on my quest.  51 more to go!  Till next time....