Scoboco had a kind of group epiphany tonight, about a third of the way through our dinner at Righteous Urban BBQ, and it was this: in theory, we love barbecue, and get a craving for it every few months; in reality, the first maybe six or seven bites are amazing... and then it all sort of starts to taste the same, and that smoky sweetness (sweet smokiness?) frankly gets a little sickening. Or maybe not. After all, I loved my lunch this fall at Blue Smoke: the deviled eggs and saucy Kansas City Ribs and macaroni and cheese were all excellent. And the three of us have had several delicious meals at Rack and Soul (though mostly due to the fried chicken). So maybe we do like this stuff... just not the sort they serve at R.U.B..
Anyway, our dinner last night definitely had it good moments. The French Fries were nicely dense and potatoey and totally addictive, especially after we salt- and peppered the heck out of them. Our other side dish—Barbecued Baked Beans, chewy with chunks of pork—was also well done. For our main course, the three of us split the Taste of the Baron, an over-the-top platter of beef brisket, ham, pulled pork, a quarter chicken, turkey, pastrami, spicy sausage and a quarter rack of (dry-rubbed) ribs, all piled high on soggy white bread and finished with sweet pickle slices. The pulled pork was the best thing here, all tender and fatty and full-flavored. The ham, turkey and pastrami... were ham, turkey and pastrami: Bo and Co just finished a lunch of leftover sandwiches, and gave it two thunbs up, but none of us were too excited by these last night. Worse, the chicken, ribs and brisket—the heart and soul of the platter—were almost completely tasteless, and so needed lots of the sweet (garlicky?) table sauce, which is maybe what did us in. Did we just order wrong? Possibly. I have heard raves about R.U.B., but the next time Scoboco gets a hankering for some BBQ, we're going somewhere else.
Righteous Urban BBQ is on 23rd Street, between 7th and 8th Avenues.