Wednesday, August 4, 2010

Big Guys BBQ

Disgusted that the best BBQ we'd found on the south side was a chain (Famous Dave's), FLOE was excited to hear of a home-grown place that had opened up in Center Grove.  Big Guy's BBQ shares a double-wide strip mall location with Hula Bean coffee, an ice cream place and a doughnut shop.  All not only under the same roof, but at the same counter & cash register.  Tres bizarre.  Upon entering, Big Guy himself, Chris Sullivan explained that we needed to step next door to order at the counter.  Sounds good.  On our trek to the counter we were able to pass a table display of some of their specials, not wax food, but real smells...good advertising.

A small menu made it easy to narrow down what's for dinner.  Definitely two combo platters to sample 4 meats and 4 sides total.  Fred decided on the pulled pork, pulled chicken, cole slaw and ranch beans.  Libby went with the Kielbasa, brisket, green beans and potato salad.  Ozzy was delighted to have a combo made almost just for him, a pb & j and mac 'n cheese!  Grammy came along for the ride and went with her own combo of the brisket and pulled pork with cole slaw and homemade chips.

It was slow at the time we arrived so seating was easy.  It was very cool to be served by the owner and chef himself, who was quite surprised to be asked for a pic for the blog.  No idea who or what we were, he played along.  Big question for Big Guy now is how exactly is the BBQ?

Fred was very worried when he first bit into his pulled chicken.  It was lukewarm and dry.  But then the pulled pork!  Luscious.  Perfectly smoky with beautiful juicy bits.  If we wanted to show a foreign visitor what pulled pork was supposed to taste like, this would be it.  The beans were also a pleasant surprise.  Not just a bunch of chili powder mixed into some beans but a great jalapeno bite and a dash of smokiness to round out the flavor. 

Libby was pretty happy with the brisket.  Some dryer parts but also some extremely tender, melty fatty bits that altogether had a great smokiness.  The sides were good.  A creamy potato salad that wasn't over the top in tang and the green beans were mild and had some sort of meat addition Libby couldn't identify.  But the star of this show had to be the kielbasa...holy smoked sausage!  So tender, with the perfect amount of char.  It almost melted in your mouth and had so much flavor!  Even Stella, with only her third tooth coming through bit into a skinless piece like it were softened butter!  Her expression said it all.  More!

Big Guys only offers 3 sauces, regular, spicy and mustard.  The flavor of the regular and spicy were about the same, with only a bit more heat on the latter.  Both were good but nothing to write home about.  The mustard sauce was heavy on the vinegar with mustard to the extreme.  Perhaps it would have worked well on the kielbasa, but who on earth would want to cover up any of that wonderful flavor?  This place is definitely meat-first with sauces as an after thought.

Ozzy's pb&j was served on a bun rather than bread.  Mom & Dad thought that was a bad choice, but Ozzy loved it...devoured every morsel!  There were even a few "mmm's" overheard throughout the meal.  Oddly, he did not find the mac to his liking.  It was of the baked variety rather than boiled, so it was "too hard" in his opinion.  The rest of the dinner party quite liked it.  It did have some peppery overtones, so perhaps our finicky boy had a legit kid complaint.

Stella was right at home and seemed to be the entertainment of the evening for the few surrounding diners.  She lapped up the attention along with a good portion of pulled pork, chicken, kielbasa and texas toast.   Wow, what is this?  A child eating meat?

Wrap Up
Price-$-$$, Cheap even by bbq standards.

Atmosphere-* 1/2, Confusing ordering and decor.  Nothing about the place said stop and stay awhile.  FLOE will be happy with take out in the future.
Service-**, Order at the counter, you're brought the food and that's all she wrote.

Fred -A-, The only downfall was the pulled chicken which was fine once sauce was added.  I just wish I had gotten the chance to ask if the kielbasa was house made since it was so amazing.  North siders, it is worth the drive just to get a lick of that!
Libby -A-, Loved my kielbasa...that's right, MY kielbasa. ;)  And the brisket was pretty delish too.  Sides were not show stealers, but the potato chips, whether crispy or floppy, were straight up awesome!
Ozzy- A, Definitely no complaints and it didn't hurt having a kick butt bakery attached for dessert!

Estelle- A, Couldn't get enough of any of the bbq.  The girl was chowin' down.

Big Guy's B-B-Q on Urbanspoon


Melissa in Z'ville said...

Just curious - have you tried Squealers BBQ at W 86th and Zionsville Rd? We love it. As recent transplants to Indy from coastal Texas, it's the best bbq we've had here... though I still haven't found any place here whose brisket that comes anywhere close to TX brisket... or a chopped beef sandwich, for that matter. I guess I never realized how much beef we Texans eat - my palate is still adjusting to the massive amounts of pork eaten around here. But I digress - please pardon my beef raving!

Anonymous said...

Hated it. Sauce is nothing but liquid smoke. Meat was all over cooked and dry. No ribs for dinner. Chicago style advertised is Vienna, and missing 4 of the 7 ingredients that make it a Chicago dog. Will not be returning...

Anonymous said...

Big Guys has now closed.