BBQ Update

Thanks to the urging of FOTR (Friends of the ‘Rag) CSI Sacramento and Carl, I had to go back and try Texas West BBQ on Fulton Ave.  You see, I truly appreciate our valued readers and commenters for calling us to task when we fail to exceed their expectations, for going beyond the story and getting into the human angle of those things about which we write, for disagreeing with my taste in barbecue quality and urging me to reconsider my hasty judgment of a Sacramento-area institution.  The institution about which I speak, of course, is Texas West BBQ, which has one thing in common with another fine Sacramento-area institution, Folsom Prison, and that thing is food quality.

Yet again, I have let someone talk me into going back to this swill-trough of an establishment and have been sorely disappointed.  Today’s lunch, pulled pork sandwich and french fries (by the way, I refuse to capitalize the “french” in “french fries,” I’m not sure I can really explain why I’ve chosen to take a stand now, but I have), was a miserable failure as far as lunches go.  Let’s start with the pork.  The pork was pulled, I’ll give ’em that; pulled off of what though, I have no idea.  That meat was dry, I mean really dry, drier than sands outside of Barstow during a drought when a kitty litter truck, a silica gel transporter and a mass migration of super absorbent sponges all collided and sucked every last bit of moisture out of the land.  Then there were the fries which had that stupid coating on them that Burger King started putting on their fries about 10 years ago, right at the time when they became totally irrelevant–coincidence?  Finally their BBQ sauce, which was sweet, yet spicy without being weighted down by any of that pesky stuff called flavor.

Thank you, fine readers, for urging me to once again confirm my previous impressions that Texas West BBQ is, without a doubt, the worst barbecue joint to be voted “Best Barbecue” in all of the land. 

22 thoughts on “BBQ Update”

  1. Have you tried Lucille’s in Rocklin? Their BBQ chicken is sweet and yummy. I love the Memphis sauce. Warning: the prices are ridiculous and they just went up.

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  2. Go to Sandra D’s. 15th and F. Great BBQ. jhj is right about Lucille’s. Great food, not so great prices.

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  3. Having worked in Rancho for the last 10 years I am quite partial to Pit Stop BBQ on Folsom blvd. It is not great food but not terrible. It is relaxed and the prices are not to high. It is was a BBQ place should be..funky and filling. Sac-eats if you are ever back out in your old stomping grounds give it a shot.

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  4. The best BBQ I have seen this town has packed up and left.

    http://www.eandjbbq.com/index_everettandjones_main.html

    I saw them on Food Network and went to the one at Jack London in Oakland. Then I found out they had one on Franklin. Last time I went in there in May or June, the owner told me that she had tried to buy the building and at the last minute the owner backed out because they wanted to sell the whole lot. She said the $7000.00 per month rent was too much, and that they were closing at the end of the month. It’s embarassing as a grown man to cry in public, so I choked it back, just barely. I can’t recall her name but the owner was super nice, and nearly every time I went in there she would make the rounds and chat, she sat with us a talked one time for the whole time we were there. If you’re ever in Oakland check them out, best beef sausage I have ever had. Be careful about the hot BBQ sauce, it’s no joke

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  5. I had met a friend at TW BBQ a few months back and when I looked at the prices, I kept thinking, “is that right?” And like a bad memory shoved to the farthest recesses of my mind, I don’t recall a thing about the food. Now I fear PTSS may rear its ugly head and give me night sweats. I went to Lucille’s in Rocklin a couple of weeks ago and while the food was decent, when I looked at the prices, once again I was thinking, “is that right?”

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  6. Oh Man, I live like 3 blocks from Texas West, went there once… paid like 11 for lunch and didn’t finish it… If I need something close, a few blocks over on Howe ave, next to Guzetta and Steve’s Pizza is a little place called “Rubs,” been there a couple times and enjoyed it. Three bucks cheaper and at least 7 times as good…

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  7. Oh Byshop, you are preaching to choir with the E&J. I think I’ve posted about them twice or three times on here over the years. I grew up on that BBQ stand in Berkeley. It is the stick by which all other BBQ joints are measured.

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  8. Okay..I’ll probably have rocks thrown my way cause this place is a real dive..but Simms on 5th and Broadway..by the chinese grocers/chicken store had some great BBQ and the best collard greens I’ve ever had. I had the tri-tip with greeens and it was fab..and grilldave seconds this rec. The service was very friendly and I met some cool people in there.

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  9. I’ve been to TW too, twice I think, and it was just as horrible as your experience. Plus, it’s not even Texas-style BBQ – not even BAD Texas-style … it’s just bad.

    Sandra Dee’s is acceptable but not great. Their smoked turkey and collards are good. I think that the place that recently closed – Everett & Jones – was FAR superior. I grew up around the corner from the one in Berkeley and Mary, the owner of the Berkeley shop, owned the one here. Sac-eats, I didn’t know you were from Berkeley too! I ate there probably once a week from 1984 through 1990 when I moved up here. Darn, it’s good. Byshop, Mary is indeed a nice lady, and she told me the sad tale of woe with her jerky landlord when I drove down to Berkeley to pick up some BBQ last month (yes I did!).

    My suggestions:

    Cafe Au Creme on Stockton is much, much better than Sandra Dee’s. Slim’s Soul Food, when he does BBQ, is better, and much cheaper (and much nicer – Sandra Dee’s staff are just rude and generally unpleasant).

    There are two other new places on Stockton and one on Broadway in Oak Park that advertise BBQ, including a chicken & waffles place that does BBQ pork ribs a few times a week. Anyone up for some culinary exploring?

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  10. Good to know Joshua.

    Is it Slims Soul Food or Simms? Are we talking about the same place?

    Are you talking about Broadway Soul Food? Ann over at Sacatomato reviewed the place. I don’t recall a stellar review.

    Hell, I am always up for culinary exploration.

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  11. I used to work with Pierre at Sandra Dee’s (for that matter Sac-eats did also) I think I need to head down there and give him a heads up on the service note. I do not remember there food to much..me thinks it is time for a return visit.

    So people do “Pub Crawls” maybe some should organize a BBQ Crawl..Or someone could stake out a spot at McKinley park and have every one show up with a plate of there favorite BBQ item and then have every taste around. Just a theory..

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  12. Sorry, you’re right, it’s Sim’s. Pretty good, I liked it. Didn’t read Ann’s review but will check it out.

    re: Sandra Dee’s – I’ve gotten takeout from there a half dozen times. They say 30-45 minutes, I show up at 45 on the dot and usually wait 20-30 minutes for the food, and they’ve been nothing but surly to me as I waited, as if I were taking up valuable stool space when the restaurant was only 1/4 full. Plus when you get takeout, they figure you’ll be too far away to complain if you get home and find missing items, twice as much sauce as meat, etc…

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  13. Listen Sac “Padma-Simmons” Eats, did you ask to speak to a Manager? Did you voice your concerns? No, you timidly left with your tail beetween your legs to complain about it in the comfort of your own office to people who can do absolutely nothing about it. You should have grabbed a waiter by the bandanna and demanded what you ordered! They probably would have replaced it with something more to your liking, maybe “fresh food” or “something edible”. Oh well…guess this makes up for the nasty mexican place on Arden you sent me to with horrid wine margaritas and a side of squirts for a week. Paybacks bro…

    FYI TW Non-Haters: I ate at the TW in Folsom last week, my wife and MIL were meeting me there and arrived first to order for us all. I ran late and they offered to both hold my food until I arrived, and when I did arrive came outside to the patio where I was joining my family and offered to completely remake my meal to be hot and fresh. Thats pretty danged good service.

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  14. It is well known among the purists that the best BBQ west of Texas is Doug’s BBQ in Emeryville/North Oakland. Do yourself a favor and check it out next time you are stuck in traffic on the Bay Bridge approach.

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  15. I liked Sandra Dee’s, but I have to admit I haven’t tried Sim’s yet. Maybe I’ll do that today. But I do have to agree with Joshua about Sandra’s service. My brother and I were there Saturday and almost walked out because it was about 15 minutes before anyone even attended to us. We were half patient because there was a big party there, but it was still pretty bad service. One of the few times I agree with not leaving a tip.

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  16. When I went to Sandra Dee’s I sat at the bar and was waited on right away..and I didn’t get any attitude. The ribs were good..but the greens were oversalted..and I make better mac n cheese. Speaking of which…I made enough for an army last night. If anyone wants some……

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  17. Agree with you 100% re Texas West Barbecue. We stopped going there about 10 yrs ago. Like Sandra Dee, and there’a place which I believe is called “Millers” in Carmichael which is great.

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  18. Different strokes for different folks I guess. For the record, I *only* eat the baby back ribs and BBQ chicken, which I say are excellent. I can’t speak to the pulled pork sandwiches (or anything else really), which may be cruddy for all I know.

    Sandra Dee’s can be a little slow, but I’ve been there a dozen times or so, and I’ve never received attitude or bad service. Maybe I’m just lucky.

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  19. Sorry, Stickie- Doug’s in Emeryville is no more. Truly awesome food, I’ll miss it. They would have done well in the “new” Emeryville if they could have held on long enough to really be discovered by the crowd now moving in there…

    We’re trying Lucille’s tonight for the first time. I’m hungry and it’s payday!

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  20. WHAT!?!?!?!?!?!?!?!?!?!?

    I just drove by it a few months ago. How sad. They had better figure out how to open a new location, possibly in Oakland or Berkeley?

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