Whenever I holiday in the U.S.A., I get excited for one type of cuisine in particular…. BBQ.
At home in Edmonton, BBQ is one of the very few things that we do not copy well. Delicious, authentic Indian food? Sure, we’ve got it. South east Asian delights? No problem. The best in real Mexican favourites? We’ve got you covered there too. Heck, we’ve even got some pretty decent pizzas and a small but vibrant food truck scene.
But BBQ? Not so much. The best we’ve got is Bubba’s BBQ truck, and while very popular and “good for Edmonton”, I’ve had better BBQ in the Houston airport.
So when our friend, and native New Yorker, suggested we head straight from the airport to Rub BBQ, we didn’t argue.
Our flight arrived late, and after a long day of travel (we got up at 3:30 AM), we were anxious for dinner. A little research online was all it took to find out that the slam-dunk favourite thing on the menu is the burnt ends (the fattier tips of the brisket- smoked 18 hours), but they are in limited supply. Luckily we were able to get the last order, so we snapped that up quickly. We decided on a 2 meat platter as well and would share everything between the 3 of us. That would give us a choice of 4 sides as well, so we got the greens, cornbread, beans (with chunks of brisket in them), and potato salad.
The runaway favourite at the table was, of course, the burnt ends.
So fatty, and tender, and absolutely melt-in-your-mouth good; I was considering grabbing the tray and running away with it after my first taste but decided to be a gentleman and share. One bite of these and you’re reminded of just how vastly superior BBQ is south of the 49 parallel.
Even in New York City.
The 2 meat platter we selected had BBQ Beef Brisket and BBQ Ham on it. This was one of the better briskets I’ve had, as it wasn’t overwhelmingly fatty but had a beautiful smoke ring and was super tender. The Ham was lean, but was also packed with flavour. With both these meats being more lean, they paired beautifully with the much fattier and sinful burnt ends.
Dessert came highly recommended. So of course we indulged.
Deep fried Oreos!
How have I never thought to batter and deep fry Oreos before? It seems so obvious now. The cookie gets soft and kind of cake like, while the filling adds a little creaminess. Surprisingly, the exterior was crisp but not greasy at all. I enjoyed these much more than another deep fried dessert I’ve had, the sickeningly sweet and gooey, deep-fried Mars bars.
So while maybe New York is not known as a BBQ mecca, it’s still possible to get top quality ‘cue right here in Manhattan. In fact, I may make a big plate of burnt ends a new post-flight tradition whenever we come back to NYC.