March 30, 2004
This was not the best BBQ I've ever had, but it IS the best BBQ I've had in Vermont. The pulled pork was really good. Tender, delicious, great mouth feel, not too saucy, and the sauce was not too sweet. They had spicy sauce on the table to add. The spareribs were meaty and cooked well, though not as tender as I've had elsewhere, I'm willing to bet that's more them getting used to the volume they need to produce, and how long it takes to smoke that amount.
If we'd ordered an appetizer or salad (as we usually do), we'd have been stuffed. As it was, we each could have happily eaten a couple more spareribs but we didn't leave feeling hungry, just like we'd have enjoyed some more but it's probably good we didn't get it.
The grits were great, and they add something to their hushpuppies that makes their flavour just burst (definitely the best hushpuppies I've had outside of my own kitchen in at least eight years, possibly longer), and I need to figure out their secret ingredient (preferably by eating many more of them). It was very subtle. I'm thinking it's cayenne but I could be wrong.
The macaroni and cheese needed to either be made with more cheddar, sharper cheddar, or have some spices and/or onions added to it, but as it is, it'd be suitable for kids who aren't too fond of spicy stuff. The grits were just wonderful (we bought a container of them to bring home, along with a pound of the pulled pork).
The cornbread was competent. Not too dry, not sweet, had good flavour, perhaps I should have taken a bite of it before I bit into the hushpuppies 'cause I didn't go "wow" with the cornbread like I did the hushpuppies.
They have a nice array of sides to choose from, and many vegetarian options (including a marinated tempeh, and vegetarian black beans). They offer a "blue plate special" with four sides and cornbread or biscuits for $8.25
They have bulk take-out, and everything on their regular menu is available for take-out. I've already added them to the cell phone speed dial. They have a variety of sandwiches, interesting salads, chicken and andouille gumbo, and stuff from the grill, as well.
They're located at 186 River Street in Montpelier (call for directions, it's tucked away by the river behind some other buildings), 802-229-2995.