Restaurant Name: Pappy’s Smokehouse
Address: 3106 Olive Street, St. Louis, MO 63103
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Day #2 of the 2018 Bang Bang BBQ Tour had lunch return me to the champion of the very first BBQ Tour I did back in 2014…Pappy’s Smokehouse! Pappy’s was the baby back rib champion in the 2014 BBQ Tour, let’s see how they’ll stack up for their overall experience.
Located just north of downtown St. Louis and near St. Louis University, Pappy’s Smokehouse has been featured on Food Network and in many BBQ magazines and online articles as one of the best BBQ places in the country. The restaurant sits at a corner and is easily seen from the street. ARRIVE EARLY! A line will form very quickly, but it is worth the wait. We were fortunate to only have about 40 people ahead of us. We reviewed the menu and were thinking of getting a bunch of individual stuff but it was recommended to us to order the “Adam Bomb”. The combo meal included a full rack of baby back ribs, a 1/4 chicken, a pulled pork sandwich, a burnt end sandwich, three ears of deep fried corn on the cob, a side of BBQ baked beans, and a dish called the Frito Pie with hot link sausage.
The food is served once again on a plastic basket with wax paper. A typical staple for a BBQ joint, but I’d still like something a little classier but I digress again. First look at this meal is yet again “LOOK AT ALL THIS MEAT!”. The ribs and chicken look amazing. You could see moisture and the juiciness of the meats from the very beginning. The deep fried corn on the cob had that charred look and was coated with a nice amount of butter and salt. The Frito Pie with the hot link sausage looked the absolute best. It was a great presentation with the very balanced layers of Frito corn chips, bbq baked beans, shredded cheddar cheese, and sliced red onions. This dish had some serious pop and eye appeal and looked absolutely DELICIOUS!
A quick rundown of all this delicious food. The baby back ribs were as I remembered from 5 years ago. Smokey, tender, and tasty. Near perfect competition style tenderness. A very visible smoke ring on the meat. Didn’t really need sauce as it had a thin coating on it already. The two sandwiches (pulled pork & burnt ends) were very well sized. The pulled pork did get a little bit dry but it was most likely due to waiting when to eat it as we had so many decisions and it’s so difficult where to start. The burnt ends were a little larger than expected but super tender and flavorful. The deep fried corn on the cob has a very unique texture. Party crispy yet juicy and buttery and salty all in one bite. The beans were good too. Too small of a sample to really get in depth with it though.
The Frito Pie with the Hot Link Sausage is gonna get its own paragraph. This dish was the highlight of the meal. It was just awesome. BBQ, salty, sweet, tangy, and a super wide array of flavors in every bite. I think the red onion was a super smart choice as it added some sweetness to the dish and some really eye catching color to the plate.
Once again the plastic basket and wax paper presentation was tough to see but was easily overlooked as the food was awesome. I would’ve liked to have seen the buns for the sandwiches have a little bit of toasting to them as they got a little soggy. The pulled pork was surprisingly a little dry so it needed some sauce.
Overall, Pappy’s Smokehouse exceeded my last visit and will continue to be a staple place to eat at everytime I’m in St. Louis or when friends ask me where to go in St. Louis to get good BBQ. For only being in business 10 years they’ve grown into a local staple with national notoriety.
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