My last barbecue experience outside of the state of Texas was not so good. I was in Colorado Springs for work, and none of the barbecue was noteworthy. This time, work had me going to Cleveland, OH. I was born and raised in the Cleveland area. When I was a kid, I remember eating ribs and liking it. That was my extent of Cleveland "barbecue." I had trouble finding a barbecue restaurant that served brisket. I made a mistake to stop by the "best" barbecue restaurant in the area. They only served ribs, wings, and fried chicken. Crud. Any other day that would have sounded good, but I was on a mission. I ended up going to Famous Dave's. They are a national chain and even have a location in Texas.
I ordered the St Louis spareribs and Texas brisket combo plate with two sides. The sides were fresh steamed broccoli and Dave's Cheesy Mac & Cheese. I also got a link of hot sausage. The brisket was just terrible. I ordered moist and got lean. I think? It tasted like a dry pot roast with barbecue sauce on it. I am not sure why the brisket was served on top of a slice of bread. I might have tasted some smoke, but I was not sure. I only had a few bites of it. That was not definitely Texas brisket. The ribs were a little better. They were tough and I thought they were grilled because I tasted no smoke. Although the sauce was sweet, it did hide the deficiency of the ribs. I only ate one and half ribs. The sausage was awful for smoked sausage. It was gray inside instead of a red color throughout. It was not smoked long enough. I had two bites of the sausage. Even the macaroni and cheese was not good. How do you screw that up? It had bits of corn and jalapeno in it. I did enjoy the steamed broccoli and cornbread though.
I asked the waiter at Famous Dave's what the cooking process was. The meats are smoked and then reheated on the grill when someone orders it. I had a lot of leftovers. I took the food to go because I felt bad. I thought I might see a homeless person and give them the food. I saw a picture of Ruby's B-B-Q when the owner visited Texas. I wished it was good as Ruby's B-B-Q. I would have been ecstatic if that was the case. After my visit, Famous Dave's was voted best in Cleveland. Most of us already feel sorry for the people of Cleveland, but this has to be the icing on the cake. When I was leaving, I saw another barbecue chain down the street. Smokey Bones. I might try it the next time I am in town for work. Maybe. Grade: N/A
Until next time, happy smoking...
Address: 26410 Great Northern Shop Center, North Olmsted, OH 44070
Phone: (440) 777-0200