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“Prices are a serious downside”
3 of 5 bubbles Review of Fette Sau

Fette Sau
Ranked #236 of 4,342 Restaurants in Philadelphia
Certificate of Excellence
Cuisines: American, Barbecue
More restaurant details
Restaurant details
Good for: Families with children, Large groups
Dining options: Dinner, Late Night, Lunch, Full Bar, Outdoor Seating, Seating, Serves Alcohol, Takeout, Wheelchair Accessible
Philadelphia
Level Contributor
608 reviews
372 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 263 helpful votes
“Prices are a serious downside”
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed May 18, 2013

You order 4-5 choices of meat by the pound along with sides, in a cafeteria style line. The St. Louis ribs are huge and meaty and the pulled pork is tasty as is the brisket. The sides, esp. baked beans and mushrooms, are the tastiest items. The bar has a great bourbon selection and some fun whiskey cocktails. You then bring your food and drinks back to your indoor or outdoor picnic tables to eat.
Given the self-service, the neighborhood, and the cuisine, the prices are ridiculously high. Easily $25 per person before drinks.
The flavors (other than sides) don't pop, the bar-b-que sauces are frankly bad, and prices are outlandish. Only my love of this cuisine gives it a three star rating.

  • Visited May 2013
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
Thank PelleasPhiladelphia
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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85 reviews from our community

Visitor rating
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Rating summary
    Food
    Service
    Value
    Atmosphere
Date | Rating
  • Chinese (Traditional) first
  • English first
  • Spanish first
  • Any
English first
Haverford, Pennsylvania
Level Contributor
10 reviews
10 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
“ouch not what I expected”
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed April 29, 2013

Not one of Stephen Starr's best places. The brisket was fatty, poorly trimmed because the chef was too rushed to serve the folks in line. The chicken was very good however. The pork belly, pulled pork, and St. Louis ribs were average. They only use red and white oak and there were no smoke rings on the ribs. Flavor was below average with little dry rub on the meats. Sauces were tasty but nothing that would compensate for the poorly smoked meats. I am a bbq food judge and I would not return here.

  • Visited March 2013
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
Thank Stuart G
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Richmond, Virginia
Level Contributor
35 reviews
19 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 14 helpful votes
“Excellent choice for gluten free food in Philadelphia”
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed April 9, 2013 via mobile

The night I went here I was venturing further afield than my hotel than I thought I would, and I almost turned around when I got off the subway and was greeted with what could only be called a decayed and worn out city block. However, I got past that and walked the 2 blocks to the restaurant and it was well worth the trip!

I talked to the man at the buffet and he pointed out the things I could not have that contained gluten. Disappointingly (and this is why its 4 stars instead of 5) all of the regular barbecue sauces are off limits because they put beer in them. However, I'm a fan of smoked meat and general so I didn't let that dissuade me.

I ordered some pulled pork, some St. Louis ribs, and some brisket along with the broccoli salad, potato salad and their special pickles.

The star of the show was the brisket and ribs. The brisket was melt in your mouth tender and the ribs were nice and meaty and not those kind of ribs you get in a restaurant where you get one little piece of meat off of them. The rub was subtle but it was there and the smoke ring was nice and pink and existed. Most importantly, despite common perception, the meat did NOT fall off the bones of the ribs (they're generally overdone at that point). The low point was the pulled pork; it tasted like it had sat in the warmer for too long and dried out. The flavor was there, but I wouldn't recommend the pulled pork.

The sides were good, the potato salad was a different kind of take on german vinegar based potato salad and the broccoli salad was good. The pickles were... odd. Thats the best way I can put it, since they aren't the usual pickles and weren't brined in vinegar. I think they're an acquired taste.

I loved the ambience, and the picnic table aspect. It just felt very comfortable and fitting to me on a warm spring night. I had an excellent meal here and would recommend this to any celiac willing to venture out and have something different. They should make at least one type of actual BBQ sauce that is gluten free though, that would make it 5 stars.

Visited April 2013
Helpful?
Thank spinal77
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Pennsylvania
Level Contributor
97 reviews
33 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 46 helpful votes
“Upside and downside”
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed March 8, 2013

Fette Sau offers the meatiest ribs you will find anywhere and they are juicy. I favor dry rubbed meat instead of drowning it in sauce and Fette Sau scores well on that. On the downside the dry rub was relatively bland. And I didn't care for the cafeteria approach to serving. I especially didn't like having to line up at the bar for a beer after having waited in the food line. I recommend sending a friend to order drinks while you are ordering food. Lastly the food is pricey. In the midwest my favorite rib place charges $12.95 for half a rack, two sides, and a basket of rolls and cornbread with butter and jalapeño jelly. Two short ribs, half a rack of pork ribs, four sides, and two soft dinner rolls was $67 at Fette Sau!!

  • Visited March 2013
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
Thank wynnetrav
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
Level Contributor
7 reviews
7 restaurant reviews
“Can't miss BBQ”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed March 8, 2013

I've eaten here 3 times already and have enjoyed everything that's been on my plate. It can be expensive if you allow yourself to eat with you eyes, but if you order an appropriate amount of food you can easily feed 2 people for $30 (not including alcohol).
Get the pickles. Get the sausage. Fill in the rest on your own.

  • Visited January 2013
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
Thank Lauren R
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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