Having spent several years in Alabama, I learned a thing or two about great barbeque, and it became something my husband and I ate frequently. To be honest, we compare all BBQ we try to what we had down south; with most places falling short of our expectations. Craving barbeque yet again, we decided to try Famous Dave’s Legendary Pit Bar-B-Que. I won’t lie; I hadn’t given it a try sooner because I knew it was a chain. I had equated “chain” with “mediocre BBQ”.
When my family ventures out to eat, we most enjoy the restaurants that offer a complete dining experience. I’m referring to the ones that feed all your senses, not just taste. In other words, we want great food AND a great atmosphere.
We opened the doors to Famous Dave’s to the sounds of Southern Blues and an interior that was a feast for the eyes with a down home feel. Hmmmm, we’ve awakened two senses so far, and smell was right behind. Red and white checked tablecloths, amusing signs posted on the walls, a stone fireplace, and antiques and photos hanging everywhere. I wasn’t sure how we’d like the food, but we were sold on the atmosphere already.
Dave Anderson, the founder of Famous Dave’s, has an incredible biography that includes a humble beginning, great success, adversity, and never abandoning the American Dream. He even served two Presidents in advisory positions. Never losing his passion for BBQ, he spent 25 years traveling the country savoring a variety of BBQ, spices and sauces in hopes to one day open a restaurant of his own.
Tom Bizzarri, manager, mentioned that people drive from all over to eat at this Famous Dave’s. It sounds like
they’ll have to keep making the trek, too.
Award Winning BBQ
My children were having a hay day at the table. So much to look around and see, signs to read, and even the employees all had different sayings on their t-shirts. Service was quick, friendly, and my kids wasted no time getting settled in with their activity menus. For kids 10 and under there is quite a selection of “Lil’ Wilbur Meals”, including a rib dinner! Drinks as well as Oreos for dessert are included and meals range from $3.99 to $4.59. If your children aren’t into BBQ, you can still find the staple cheeseburgers, mini corn dogs and mac-n-cheese. They offer an array of mouth watering sides to choose from such as garlic red skin mashed potatoes, coleslaw, drunkin’ apples, baked beans, and more. Take note: kids’ meals are only $.99 with each purchase of an adult meal on Mondays.
Can’t decide what to try first? My husband and I dove into the All-Ameri
can BBQ Feast (for two) and I was in hog heaven. We sampled four kinds of meat, three flavorful sides, corn on the cob, and melt in your mouth corn muffins. Bizzarri said he still gets a kick out of hearing people comment in amazement over the portions, and the great food. Did I mention the feasts are served on a garbage can lid? What more could you ask for? The meat was slow cooked and seasoned to perfection. I was certain I was back in Alabama. And the five sauces that helped make Dave famous? We couldn’t find one we didn’t like.
Bottom Line: Awaken your senses, take a break from the ordinary, and enjoy some perfected lip smackin’ barbeque. There’s more than enough to look at and enjoy, the music will keep your toes tappin’, and the food will please even the biggest BBQ critic. They didn’t win over 400 awards for nothing.