I recently stopped in on a whim because I was driving by. The sign caught my eye more than anything. "Real Bar-B-Q" is said. Never one to miss out on a taste of the real thing, I decided to stop in and see what it was all about.
Having eaten in Texas, I have some idea what Texas Barbeque is about (or is it BBQ or Bar-B-Q?) I was expecting some large Texan to greet me at the counter, but as usual, this is Southern California and there was a lady working the counter with several hispanic looking gentleman working the 'kitchen.' The kitchen is tucked away somewhat in the back of the restaurant and partially obstructed from view. In the front is a heating lamp with all the glorious meat laid out.
What better to start my exploration out than a brisket sandwich? This is the litmus test of barbeque, in my opinion. A good brisket makes or breaks a restaurant because Texas in known for having great brisket. You see, beef is king in Texas and I was in the mood for the king of meats that day.
The special of the day happened to be your choice of meat in a sandwich, one side, and a drink.
How was it? It was pretty decent, though not too close to perfect. It was much better than you'd get at a lot of other places, though. What makes it so? The smoke, I tell you, the smoke. Real barbeque has that smoky flavor, especially that of a hardwood like mesquite or hickory. The beef was sliced and served up with a good barbeque sauce. Now sauce is somewhat of a subjective issue. I like their particular sauce because it had a smoky, sweet flavor with just a hint of vinegar. It was excellent, if you're Texas barbecue eater. North Carolinians, beware.
I think the meat could have used just a little more fat to it, but otherwise it was tender and juicy enough. It was a little on the dry side, but it didn't affect the flavor too much, I just added more of the delicious sauce.
Next time, I will check out the other meats to see how they are, but the brisket is definitely worthy of the 4 circle rating when compared to what else is in San Diego. I don't think anyone short of Phil's will ever get the 5 circles.
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.