Barbeque Beans, Bloody Mary, Brisket, Caribbean Jerked Chicken, Greek Potatoes, Macaroni and Cheese, Memphis Style Ribs, Pecan Pie, Pulled Pork, restaurant, Salt Lake City, Sugarhouse, Sugarhouse BBQ, Turkey Salad Sandwich
Summer is behind us. It’s sad, but true. No longer are most of us going to be firing up the grill and basting those sticky-icky-ooey-gooey ribs in some saucy concoction while the coals cook up dinner to perfection. No more barbeque sauce covered fingers where you have to use your sleeve to wipe off your mouth while trying to manage eating a mouthful of food. No more heaping mounds of corn bread, slaw, and collard greens in the backyard. And ya know – I am absolutely ok with that, ‘cause someone else can spend that energy on my lunch or dinner.
What was once a destination restaurant has now transformed into a hot spot that is drawing crowds of people in the doors of Sugarhouse BBQ as the aromas draw individuals off of 2100 South. To my surprise this joint is veeery clean. What the heck did I expect?! A dirty dive?! Perhaps secretly I wished it was not so bright and spotless. I felt that I had to be lady-like and that I couldn’t really dump the BBQ sauce on my food and make a mess.
There seem to be too many tables set in the room my guest and I were eating in, as my personal bubble kinda felt invaded. But, I still managed to have a drink and good conversation with my guest and … well, let’s be honest – we didn’t have to worry about laughing too loud or censoring what we were talking about, because other people around us were being equally loud and were absorbed into their conversation. When we weren’t chatting it up, it was a great place to be able to gaze outside the window and check out the cars driving by and partake in some people watching when folks were getting on and off the nearby bus stop.
Our server was very charismatic, personable, and gave honest recommendations. He kept us entertained, which is probably outside of his job description. He certainly tapped into our demanding and playful mood at our table and was able to keep up with what we gave him. Stellar.
I started with a spicy Bloody Mary ‘cause I thought that it would go perfectly well with whatever upcoming collection of BBQ grub that I had coming my way. But, I was so confused. What was I going to order? The turkey salad sandwich sounded amazing. But, alas…it sounded like more of a lunch item to me than a sit down – let’s gnaw on some bones kinda meal that I was looking forward to. Lucky for me that I got help from our friendly and playful server: when I asked him if he had a coin to flip to make my decision easier he actually reached into his pocket and left a quarter for me at the table.
I got a side order of the Caribbean jerked chicken. Now…for all of you who like jerked goods…then perhaps this is for you. The flavors where bold, not spicy, and surprisingly didn’t leave me with a dry taste in my mouth. However, I couldn’t finish the side because the flavor was just not what I was after. Now, if I was smart and ordered a side of mashed potatoes then I would have made my mama proud and finished my plate, because I think I could have swung that combo. Too bad, so sad. This just didn’t happen. I had to move on. Too much jerk for me.
Instead, I devoured the 1/3 slab of their signature Memphis style ribs. The ribs looked like they came out of a photo: nice smooth straight lines without any globs of BBQ sauce pouring over them. These babies were smoked to perfection and were placed on the table next to an assortment of sauces to douse them with at my table. The trouble now was deciding what sauce I wanted: a Carolina based vinegar sauce, brown sugar mustard, the Sugarhouse BBQ sauce…and what was the other?! So many options! How could I possibly go wrong?! At the end of the meal I proved that I am a carnivore. All in all, the dishes were nice and clean which surprised me because apparently I was expecting some gristle or amazingly charred BBQ protein – instead of being just smoked.
My guest reports that, “The brisket was a little too dry for me. Good thing I love BBQ sauce and their recipe was just my style. I would definitely order the pulled pork again and the sides I had were definitely awesome. Especially the Greek potatoes!!”
But, it didn’t stop there. I was allowed a couple of side dishes. I went for the barbeque beans and macaroni and cheese. The barbeque beans were just as one would expect. However, something seemed amok with the mac and cheese. Was that Velveeta?! Or was that just my taste buds pulling a prank on me? But, how unique…spiral macaroni…Sugarhouse BBQ, you are keeping it unique: you guys get kudos for that.
And then there was dessert. I’m a fan of bread pudding, but I didn’t see what kind of sauce was offered with it and I certainly didn’t want to heckle our server any more, so in the end one piece of pecan pie (heated up) served ala mode was on its way. I was glad we ordered it, as it wrapped up the dinner perfectly.
Perhaps another restaurant could hook me up with a messier finger-licking-good barbeque experience, however since I roll by the digs often, Sugarhouse BBQ has grabbed my attention and I’ll be heading over there when I just don’t wanna mess around with the smoky joe or green egg.