Wednesday, March 5, 2008

Bubba's Not So Hubba

Finding a good barbecue joint in DC is akin to meeting a Cowboys fan that isn't a complete jerkoff. But, that doesn't mean I won't keep an open mind – about the BBQ.

I was craving pork butt again, so me and Jon decided to venture over to Bubba's in Falls Church. I mean, check out their
menu. Chili cheese fries are always a draw for me, but with three different versions of pork bbq, I was sold. Both of us got the classic pulled pork sandwich, as if there were really any other option. My plate was a pig pleaser all around, aesthetically. Rosy colored shredded pork piled high on a sesame seed bun, topped with a heap of slaw, two-colored baked beans, white and red, and collards with skinny white onions perched on the vinegary greens, all served on a bright blue plate, with separate baby bowls for the sides – an added bonus in light of the messy melee. The really great thing about this place is that they serve beer, by the pitcher no less.

Okay, let me first say that I hardly believe there is bad bbq, ever, anywhere. Even the driest, most tasteless, unspicy, stale bunned, slawless pulled pork sandwich is enjoyable, at the very least. That being said, Bubba's was somewhat of a disappointment. The slaw that looked like a heap just didn't measure up to the even bigger heap of smoked pig, and was sorely missed. Almost as much as a truly hot hot sauce, the lack of which was even more surprising considering they had several lovely looking sauces on the table, along with trivial pursuit cards, all of which are usually good omens. Of a sweet sticky bbq sauce, a yellow runny mustard sauce, and an orangey vinegar sauce, none had the kick I was looking for. And, Texas Pete just doesn't cut it; it's even less hot than Tabasco, which would have sufficed, but when that's the hottest option, I'm left wanting more for sure. The pork was tender but sauceless, not my fave, not Pierce's, not Buzz N Neds, not even close, yet just good enough to satisfy my craving.

The beans on the other hand were freakin fantastic. Chunky and perfectly chewy bacon knocked these little guys out of the ballpark. Collards are simple, but easy to screw up, and these ones were pretty middle of the road, but at least the vinegar was on point. Throw some of the bean bacon into the collards and jackpot...more fatback please!

All in all, Bubba's is a priceless little pork butt haven
, but not quite heaven. If you get a hankering for hog, it just might be the place for a beer and brisket, which I'll be sure to try next time, along with the chili cheese fries.