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Real Urban BBQ - New BBQ joint in Highland Park

Real Urban BBQ - New BBQ joint in Highland Park
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  • Post #31 - November 8th, 2010, 6:30 pm
    Post #31 - November 8th, 2010, 6:30 pm Post #31 - November 8th, 2010, 6:30 pm
    Head's Red BBQ wrote:Owner is a BBQ guy (competiton and backyard cook) and has been in the food/restaurant biz for quite some time. Wishing them all the luck in the world and hoping for some good things from them.
    I've met Jeff Shapiro on a few occasions, he is an actual BBQ guy, which gives him a leg up on some of the recent BBQ joint openings. I wish him the very best of luck.

    Enjoy,
    Gary 'high hopes, reasonable expectations' Wiviott
    One minute to Wapner.
    Raymond Babbitt

    Low & Slow
  • Post #32 - November 8th, 2010, 6:38 pm
    Post #32 - November 8th, 2010, 6:38 pm Post #32 - November 8th, 2010, 6:38 pm
    Got my wooden nickel today!

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  • Post #33 - November 8th, 2010, 7:17 pm
    Post #33 - November 8th, 2010, 7:17 pm Post #33 - November 8th, 2010, 7:17 pm
    Got mine too :)
    "Your swimming suit matches your eyes, you hold your nose before diving, loving you has made me bananas!"
  • Post #34 - November 9th, 2010, 9:59 am
    Post #34 - November 9th, 2010, 9:59 am Post #34 - November 9th, 2010, 9:59 am
    blipsman wrote:Got my wooden nickel today!

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    Haha, it looks like your wooden nickel was cracked in the mail just like mine. :)
  • Post #35 - November 11th, 2010, 11:24 am
    Post #35 - November 11th, 2010, 11:24 am Post #35 - November 11th, 2010, 11:24 am
    Just drove by and there's a big banner proclaiming "Now Open."
  • Post #36 - November 11th, 2010, 11:29 am
    Post #36 - November 11th, 2010, 11:29 am Post #36 - November 11th, 2010, 11:29 am
    Have driven by the last couple of nights about 7pm and it seems like they're doing a decent business.
  • Post #37 - November 11th, 2010, 11:40 am
    Post #37 - November 11th, 2010, 11:40 am Post #37 - November 11th, 2010, 11:40 am
    I was there last night. The official opening is tomorrow.

    The ribs were great, the potato pancake side in particular is too.

    I know that Jeff touts the brisket in a big way, and it looks beautiful but I think I got unlucky - mine was a little dry.

    Oh, the cool thing is that there are four amazing sauces, and his sauce guy is dedicated to developing more, doing seasonal specials and rotating sauces ones in and out. For me, the sauces nearly stole the show.
  • Post #38 - November 11th, 2010, 2:26 pm
    Post #38 - November 11th, 2010, 2:26 pm Post #38 - November 11th, 2010, 2:26 pm
    GiveMeFood wrote:I was there last night. The official opening is tomorrow.


    As Ron asked of another poster above,

    ronnie_suburban wrote:Do you have an affilation with the ownership of this place? I'm asking because you are tasting items before their actual opening. If so, could you please clarify your relationship so that all of us reading this thread understand can exactly where you're coming from with your posts?


    Thanks.
    Gypsy Boy

    "I am not a glutton--I am an explorer of food." (Erma Bombeck)
  • Post #39 - November 11th, 2010, 3:06 pm
    Post #39 - November 11th, 2010, 3:06 pm Post #39 - November 11th, 2010, 3:06 pm
    I was drove by RUB around 11:15AM this morning and two things conspicuously absent in the air: smoke and the smell of meat cooking...
  • Post #40 - November 11th, 2010, 3:09 pm
    Post #40 - November 11th, 2010, 3:09 pm Post #40 - November 11th, 2010, 3:09 pm
    Will be checking it out in 2 hours or so. Will report back.
  • Post #41 - November 11th, 2010, 3:43 pm
    Post #41 - November 11th, 2010, 3:43 pm Post #41 - November 11th, 2010, 3:43 pm
    My workmates got lunch from here today and tried a lot of items (5 meats, 6 sides). I had a previous engagement but I did get to try a slice of brisket that was cut as the order was placed. It had a very pronounced and beautiful smoke ring, and was moist and tender but I couldn't really discern any smoke at all. It tasted like well-made, oven-baked brisket. Reviews here were mixed but positive overall and the office crew -- far less particular about BBQ than many of us -- thought it was promising and planned another visit. They seemed very focused on the sauces, which may or may not indicate their collective level of BBQ aficionado-ism. I got back a couple hours after they finished lunch to find some leftovers in the the fridge, so the tastes I had at that point don't really mean anything.

    The space is bright and attractive and very well-staffed. Everyone with whom we interacted (I was only there for the ordering) was kind and enthusiastic. I'm told that it was a little chaotic waiting for the order -- and a couple of items were inadvertantly omitted -- but considering they'd been open about 15 minutes at that point, that's totally understandable. I only mention it as a mild 'heads up' to those who are planning to visit sooner than later.

    Looking forward to actually trying it out soon.

    =R=
    Why don't you take these profiteroles and put them up your shi'-ta-holes? --Jemaine & Bret

    There's a horse loose in a hospital --JM

    That don't impress me much --Shania Twain
  • Post #42 - November 11th, 2010, 4:52 pm
    Post #42 - November 11th, 2010, 4:52 pm Post #42 - November 11th, 2010, 4:52 pm
    chezbrad wrote:I was drove by RUB around 11:15AM this morning and two things conspicuously absent in the air: smoke and the smell of meat cooking...

    Hi,

    Urbanites are not too tolerant of smoke and odors.

    I learned from talking to Barry at Smoque that Southern Pride smokers are designed not to emit too much smoke and odor.

    Honey One had state and/or local EPA visiting them daily due to neighbor complaints. They eventually installed an air scrubber costing around $20,000.

    Based on these experiences and how my community behaves, I suggest this place has already considered how to minimize smoke and odors.

    Regards,
    Cathy2

    "You'll be remembered long after you're dead if you make good gravy, mashed potatoes and biscuits." -- Nathalie Dupree
    Facebook, Twitter, Greater Midwest Foodways, Road Food 2012: Podcast
  • Post #43 - November 11th, 2010, 7:00 pm
    Post #43 - November 11th, 2010, 7:00 pm Post #43 - November 11th, 2010, 7:00 pm
    Cathy after speaking with the owner of RUB you are correct. The high-end exhaust is to keep the neighbors happy.

    My initial visit exceeded my expectations. I went (very) early with my kids to avoid the possibility of having to wait. I had the half-rack of spare ribs with rub along with the baked beans and string beans. I also, for scientific purposes only of course, had a small brisket sandwich. My daughter had the pulled pork sans slaw along with mashed pots, and my son had the half chicken no sauce or side.

    I really enjoyed my ribs, though they were a tad sweet. There was a very subtle char and bite to it, yet the ribs were tender and definitely flavorful. The meat was just about falling off the bone without being mushy - a very nice texture. I will mention that if you do get the rub expect bold sweet and slightly spicy flavor that won't need sauce. If you plan to do sauce it might be best not to get rub, though the rubbed ribs were great by themselves. The brisket was spot-on. It had a decent amount of fat without being greasy. The beans were nice, albeit a little sweet. The string beans were fine, if unexciting, but hey they are string beans. My daughter's pork had great texture on a fresh roll that didn't overwhelm the pork. It definitely needed a little sauce to brighten it up, and of course I would have put slaw on it, but she's a 9 yr old girl who doesn't like slaw. :D My son's chicken was outstanding, and maybe my favorite item. Fantastic full flavor on the skin that penetrated the moist meat beneath. Really almost chicken perfection - a bit more smoke would have achieved a perfect score, but please understand I am not complaining. The chicken was top-notch. Oh, and my daughter's mashed potatoes were solid. They are not the creamy type, more of a chunky mash that highlights the potato.

    The sauces available are a KC type that's sweet but not cloying - very enjoyable. A spicier version of the sweet sauce. A mustard based saucethat I really enjoyed. And a vinegar sauce thatis tasty, but expect a full vinegar effect. Tread lightly.

    As far as value was concerned I was very happy. I felt the price for the quality and quantity was very fair. No portion was too small, and quite honestly not too big either. Service was just fine, though it wasn't very busy, so we'll see how that goes. Of course it may get rough at first, but I am sure they will figure things out.

    Just to sum up I was very satisfied with my first visit, and I look forward to returning soon to taste other items on the menu. I also want to try the spare ribs again, but next time it will be dry to see how those taste. Also, there were some very attractive desserts available, but I was already stretching things with the amount of food ordered, so maybe next time. I look forward to reading others' reviews.
  • Post #44 - November 12th, 2010, 7:59 am
    Post #44 - November 12th, 2010, 7:59 am Post #44 - November 12th, 2010, 7:59 am
    Just for the record..Jeff is cooking on an FEC pellet cooker..not a Southern Pride
    anyway hoping to check it out at lunch today
    First Place BBQ Sauce - 2010 NBBQA ( Natl BBQ Assoc) Awards of Excellence
  • Post #45 - November 13th, 2010, 4:32 pm
    Post #45 - November 13th, 2010, 4:32 pm Post #45 - November 13th, 2010, 4:32 pm
    Stopped in to check this new place out with my two year old in tow. There is was a faint aroma of smoke and meat in the air as I traversed the steps into the former Stash's space. I am by no means an expert on bbq, i consider myself an informed bbq tourist, but i was really encouraged by the quality of the food and the operation on what was only the second official day of service. I am also glad that this place is located on the south end of second street where parking is actually available, as opposed to the other side of central, both on the street and in the garage. If RUB takes off we might actually see some action in this area for the first time since they ruined stash's and built port clinton square!

    I sampled a very limited portion of the menu and enjoyed a delicious half rack of baby backs and some smoked turkey as well as some cole slaw and a bit of my daughter's mac n cheese. I also tasted all four of the sauces which were available on the table. The ribs were both tender and toothsome in the way that can only be achieved by low and slow cooking. The ribs had a smoke ring and tasted of smoke too. All meats appear to be cooked on a cookshack smoker. I enjoyed the carolina vinegar sauce best (i am trying to avoid sugar) but liked the mustard style sauce as well. The standard KC style sauce was a little sweet for my bbq tastes. The sliced turkey was also great, moist and flavorful.

    The space itself looks great and I am excited to try the full extravaganza that is their menu. HP has a lot of rib joints but no real bbq. I really hope this place catches on and becomes on of my mainstays.
  • Post #46 - November 13th, 2010, 4:57 pm
    Post #46 - November 13th, 2010, 4:57 pm Post #46 - November 13th, 2010, 4:57 pm
    Went back for lunch today - kids excited to return so who's to argue? My son had the half chicken again, which was as good as Thursday, if not better. My daughter had the small trio of sanwiches including brisket, pulled chicken, and pulled pork. All very tasty and well sized. I had the trio including an excellent sausage, good pulled pork, and surprisingly flavorful smoked turkey. At this point I can say with certainty that the mustard blend sauce if my favorite. My sides included very good mac and cheese and outstanding carrots that I finished a bit too quickly. All-in including beverages I think we paid about 36 bucks. A relative bargain given the quality. 2 for 2. Welcome to the neighborhood!
  • Post #47 - November 14th, 2010, 9:03 am
    Post #47 - November 14th, 2010, 9:03 am Post #47 - November 14th, 2010, 9:03 am
    sugar biscuits were damn tasty....
    my favorite was the chicken sandwich....moist and flavorful. pork and brisket needed lots of sauce - but gave me chance to try out all 4 of them.
    still working out the kinks but as to be expected in a new establishment.
  • Post #48 - November 15th, 2010, 9:59 am
    Post #48 - November 15th, 2010, 9:59 am Post #48 - November 15th, 2010, 9:59 am
    visited on friday, ribs and pulled pork sandwich were both good, but the sides were just average for us. the ordering system was the biggest turn off. it's basically glorified cafeteria style, one station you pick your main, next salad (if you want), then sides which are essentially on warming plates, and finally drink/dessert.

    the huge choke points were the meat station and the register, of which there is only one. in between there, we were in line long enough that some of our meat wasn't quite "piping hot" by the time we sat down to eat.

    however the quality was still excellent and we'll be back. but that ordering system is going to annoy me every time we go, i'm sure.
  • Post #49 - November 15th, 2010, 11:19 am
    Post #49 - November 15th, 2010, 11:19 am Post #49 - November 15th, 2010, 11:19 am
    I think my wait in line was worth it to have a brisket pulled straight from the smoker and handcarved in front of me ..
    First Place BBQ Sauce - 2010 NBBQA ( Natl BBQ Assoc) Awards of Excellence
  • Post #50 - November 15th, 2010, 11:26 am
    Post #50 - November 15th, 2010, 11:26 am Post #50 - November 15th, 2010, 11:26 am
    Head's Red BBQ wrote:I think my wait in line was worth it to have a brisket pulled straight from the smoker and handcarved in front of me ..

    thats the model that a couple very good Iowa places use too-then at least you can see that your order is fresh cut--worth to me also--if the system is set to provide a good flow
  • Post #51 - November 15th, 2010, 11:48 am
    Post #51 - November 15th, 2010, 11:48 am Post #51 - November 15th, 2010, 11:48 am
    buzzd wrote:
    Head's Red BBQ wrote:I think my wait in line was worth it to have a brisket pulled straight from the smoker and handcarved in front of me ..

    thats the model that a couple very good Iowa places use too-then at least you can see that your order is fresh cut--worth to me also--if the system is set to provide a good flow

    im sure the flow here will speed up a bit as well too ..we are talking about a staff thats only been in place for 4 days counting the weekend
    First Place BBQ Sauce - 2010 NBBQA ( Natl BBQ Assoc) Awards of Excellence
  • Post #52 - November 15th, 2010, 12:15 pm
    Post #52 - November 15th, 2010, 12:15 pm Post #52 - November 15th, 2010, 12:15 pm
    Just stopped by for a quick lunch and to get some things for tonight. It turns out that the wooden nickle is only good for a mini sandwich, so I decided to save that until I come with the kids. I had the burnt ends, which were very disappointing, alternating between dried out meat and lumps of fat. I got no smoke flavor, which shocked me, but he did pull them out of the regular oven so they may have just been baked trimmings. the baked beans were good, and the slaw serviceable. I tasted the pulled pork that I brought home for tonight, and it seems to be nice and moist, but fairly flavorless, again with almost no smoke flavor. The sausages are decent, but basically taste like polish sausage with a little back of the mouth heat at the end. They were out of chicken, which at 11:15am is probably a good sign since they are not rewarming the previous days leftovers. Overall, I am disappointed, but hopefully they will work out the kinks and add more wood to the smoker (and start serving real burnt ends).

    -Will
  • Post #53 - November 15th, 2010, 1:20 pm
    Post #53 - November 15th, 2010, 1:20 pm Post #53 - November 15th, 2010, 1:20 pm
    WillG wrote:Just stopped by for a quick lunch and to get some things for tonight. It turns out that the wooden nickle is only good for a mini sandwich, so I decided to save that until I come with the kids. I had the burnt ends, which were very disappointing, alternating between dried out meat and lumps of fat. I got no smoke flavor, which shocked me, but he did pull them out of the regular oven so they may have just been baked trimmings. the baked beans were good, and the slaw serviceable. I tasted the pulled pork that I brought home for tonight, and it seems to be nice and moist, but fairly flavorless, again with almost no smoke flavor. The sausages are decent, but basically taste like polish sausage with a little back of the mouth heat at the end. They were out of chicken, which at 11:15am is probably a good sign since they are not rewarming the previous days leftovers. Overall, I am disappointed, but hopefully they will work out the kinks and add more wood to the smoker (and start serving real burnt ends).

    -Will

    I did get there early enough on Friday to get a quickie tour of the operation. Every piece of meat was being cooked on the FEC. I had the brisket plate and it tasted great. It w s sliced fresh off the flat ..Nice smoke ring and very tender
    the point meat they make the burnt ends from is cut from the same briskets that cooked in the smoker so they are "real" burnt ends..they are not baking them
    as far as how they taste and all I can not comment since I didnt try any ..the "oven" you saw was most likely the warming units they might have been holding them in
    First Place BBQ Sauce - 2010 NBBQA ( Natl BBQ Assoc) Awards of Excellence
  • Post #54 - November 15th, 2010, 1:24 pm
    Post #54 - November 15th, 2010, 1:24 pm Post #54 - November 15th, 2010, 1:24 pm
    I've never cooked with a pellet smoker. Is it even possible to get 'really' smokey food using one?

    =R=
    Why don't you take these profiteroles and put them up your shi'-ta-holes? --Jemaine & Bret

    There's a horse loose in a hospital --JM

    That don't impress me much --Shania Twain
  • Post #55 - November 15th, 2010, 1:27 pm
    Post #55 - November 15th, 2010, 1:27 pm Post #55 - November 15th, 2010, 1:27 pm
    ronnie_suburban wrote:I've never cooked with a pellet smoker. Is it even possible to get 'really' smokey food using one?

    =R=

    from what ive been told and shown by owners of them..you have to start the meat off at a really low temp initially to get more of a smoke presence on the meat.. ..Ive never cooked on one personally
    First Place BBQ Sauce - 2010 NBBQA ( Natl BBQ Assoc) Awards of Excellence
  • Post #56 - November 15th, 2010, 2:27 pm
    Post #56 - November 15th, 2010, 2:27 pm Post #56 - November 15th, 2010, 2:27 pm
    I am not a bbq expert, and I probably over smoke the stuff I cook at home, but i guess I expected the burnt ends to have a very noticeable smoke flavor, particularly since they are described as "smoked twice." I got there right after 11 (I think I was the first customer today), and when I asked if they had burnt ends, the guy said "let me see if they are done," and opened the regular ovens (I suppose they could have been warmers, but they looked like a pair of under counter regular ovens, in the middle of the back), poked at the tray of ends and pieces of meat, and said, "looks like they are ready." It definitely did not come out of the smokers to the left where he got some of the other stuff. It certainly could have been smoked earlier, I was just surprised by the lack of flavor. Of the other dozen or so people who came in while I was there, probably half ordered the burnt ends, and I didnt hear any complaints, so it could just be me.

    -Will
  • Post #57 - November 15th, 2010, 2:35 pm
    Post #57 - November 15th, 2010, 2:35 pm Post #57 - November 15th, 2010, 2:35 pm
    WillG wrote:and when I asked if they had burnt ends, the guy said "let me see if they are done," and opened the regular ovens (I suppose they could have been warmers, but they looked like a pair of under counter regular ovens, in the middle of the back), poked at the tray of ends and pieces of meat, and said, "looks like they are ready." It definitely did not come out of the smokers to the left where he got some of the other stuff. It certainly could have been smoked earlier, I was just surprised by the lack of flavor. Of the other dozen or so people who came in while I was there, probably half ordered the burnt ends, and I didnt hear any complaints, so it could just be me.

    -Will

    those are not regular ovens being used for cooking meat ..they are food holders/warmers..the points are part of the whole brisket that comes out of the smoker..so at some point they were cooked in the smoker and then put in the warmers for holding after the point and flat got separated
    as far as smoke level I know I like a bit more smoke flavor myself..
    I do recall a conversation I had with owner of another BBQ restaurant i had a few years agao . I told him I really like the food but thought it was a little light on smoke for my tastes. He said that he used to use more smoke but cut it back because customers complained it was too smoky :?:
    First Place BBQ Sauce - 2010 NBBQA ( Natl BBQ Assoc) Awards of Excellence
  • Post #58 - November 15th, 2010, 3:00 pm
    Post #58 - November 15th, 2010, 3:00 pm Post #58 - November 15th, 2010, 3:00 pm
    Head's Red BBQ wrote:I do recall a conversation I had with owner of another BBQ restaurant i had a few years agao . I told him I really like the food but thought it was a little light on smoke for my tastes. He said that he used to use more smoke but cut it back because customers complained it was too smoky :?:


    I know what you mean. I know my smoke level preference has changed over the years. I used to like it really smoky, too. Over the past 5 years or so, I've started to cook with less and less smoke. There's still what I consider to be a nice smoke level in my meat, but I'm starting to enjoy the subtle nuances of BBQ flavor more and more without the smoke getting in the way. Of course, you can take it too far and end up with meat that might just as well have been cooked in the oven. There's a nice balance somewhere in the middle for me.

    I'll have to schlep to Highland Park in the next couple of weeks to see how they are doing.
    Steve Z.

    “Only the pure in heart can make a good soup.”
    ― Ludwig van Beethoven
  • Post #59 - November 15th, 2010, 3:08 pm
    Post #59 - November 15th, 2010, 3:08 pm Post #59 - November 15th, 2010, 3:08 pm
    I don't love a lot of smoke either, but I tasted none in the brisket I tried. I'm pretty sure we'll try it again before the end of the week, though.

    =R=
    Why don't you take these profiteroles and put them up your shi'-ta-holes? --Jemaine & Bret

    There's a horse loose in a hospital --JM

    That don't impress me much --Shania Twain
  • Post #60 - November 15th, 2010, 3:22 pm
    Post #60 - November 15th, 2010, 3:22 pm Post #60 - November 15th, 2010, 3:22 pm
    its hard for me to tell sometimes ..maybe because I cook and eat BBQ regularly..i dont sense as much of a smoke presence as others that Im dining with sometimes....
    First Place BBQ Sauce - 2010 NBBQA ( Natl BBQ Assoc) Awards of Excellence

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