While we have threads on this place, or that, it would seem that we should have a unified umbrella thread to collect all the subdiscussions.
Let me start with the Formaggio Kitchen weekend barbecue. I’ve eaten it many times in the past, and it always had its strengths and weaknesses. I was driving by today on my way to Home Depot to get a 24" LED lighting fixture when I noticed (a) that the line was short, and (b) there was a place to pull over. It had been three years since I last had their bbq and it would take a stronger woman than I to resist this apple.
I got pints each of brisket bits, okra, rice&beans, a single Texas short rib, and a sausage sandwich, with some bbq sauce thrown it. Sweet!
Unfortunately, I mean that literally, not as an endorsement. Sweet was the overriding theme. The bbq sauce was sweet, the brisket was very sweet (and unless I was lucky enough to get one of the two heftier pieces of meat included in my pint, the rest of the shredded meat could have passed for an edgy dessert – molasses pudding with beef shreds), even the okra was sweet.
The biggest disappointment was my rib: It had been overcooked to an unconscionable point (this has long been a problem with their ribs, no matter the grill-mistress). Yes a good bbqd piece of meat needs some bark, but this rib was – forgive me, but I’m weak – all bark and no bite. “No bite” is an exaggeration, but only a slight one. There was a succulent layer of meat close to the bone, but you had to cut off an outer 1/2 inch of inedibly dry meat to get to it. And, they charge you by the pound.
The pricing was problematic as well. The sides are packed at one counter with no price written on the bag, the hot stuff elsewhere down the line, and you have to rely on the mental acuity of the person at the cash counter to come up with some approximation of the right total. In my case, there was no combination of individual prices (see below) that I could later come up with that gave me my total of $39.
The rice and beans were OK, and the sausage in the sandwich superb (always a strength there).