Bob’s BBQ Pit

by KimHo on August 6, 2010 · 3 comments under: Food,Restaurant,Travel



Bob’s BBQ Pit
911 S 11th Street
Tacoma, WA
Bob's Bar-B-Q on Urbanspoon

If you look around the different restaurants I have been, you will notice that I tend to visit out of the way places that most people won’t. In a way, let’s just say, I have a soft spot for such type of restaurants, not to mention that, while I could go to the most popular one, for the most part my fellow bloggers are already taken care of it plus, in the case of some large chains, they have their share of hype and blaggers. It won’t be that different for me when one day I wanted meat, as in BBQ. Now, this is the Pacific Northwest, a part that is not necessarily known for their BBQ (for BBQ in places like, say Texas, check these two posts from Mijune); however, I was hoping for BBQ nevertheless (otherwise, I might have ended up in a place like Asado). So, browsing through Urbanspoon again, I was able to locate two nearby places: B&B BBQ and Bob’s BBQ Pit. For the first one, the day I managed to get there… Let’s just say I wasn’t sure if they were in business or not, as it was “open” but nobody was there. As a result, I turned around and went for my second option. Did I mention I tend to go to out of way places and visually looks like a dive?

Bob's BBQ Pit, Tacoma, BBQ, Rib bits, ribs, sausage, hot links, pork, beef, collard, greens, baked, beans, corn bread

While Bob’s BBQ Pit isn’t that far from my hotel (it is ~15 minutes walk but it has a really steep hill), it shows a sharp contrast of Tacoma. In a way, I sense this area to be “suburb” while you can see the port down the hill. Did I mention this looks like a dive from outside? However, more than ever I wanted to go when, from the back, I saw some smoke on the back (though, alas, not that much of that BBQ smell)…

Bob's BBQ Pit, Tacoma, BBQ, Rib bits, ribs, sausage, hot links, pork, beef, collard, greens, baked, beans, corn bread

When I walked into the dining area of the restaurant, easily under 16 square metre/180 square feet, about the size of a small living room, once again, it showed that, if you choose to come here, you aren’t here for the looks. Even the tables were old painted wood tables… There was an old gracious African American “grandma” taking care of the shop. The menu had different interesting options but I had some hesitation given the time of the day and the lack of customers. Now, granted, BBQ is one of those things that you can cook way in advance and, as long as you don’t let it try (say briskets), it can pretty much be maintained for the rest of the day but, when you don’t have customers, it does not move and can easily make you wonder. But, in the end, I made my order and sat down (while hearing some whacking on the back).

Bob's BBQ Pit, Tacoma, BBQ, Rib bits, ribs, sausage, hot links, pork, beef, collard, greens, baked, beans, corn bread

Did I mention it was a dive? Now about single use containers? Yup, it was served in a styrofoam container! Here, rib tips and hot links plus a side of baked beans and collard greens. When I made my order, they asked if I wanted the sauce to be “regular” or hot. What I didn’t know at the moment was that it would be smothered in sauce… >_<

Bob's BBQ Pit, Tacoma, BBQ, Rib bits, ribs, sausage, hot links, pork, beef, collard, greens, baked, beans, corn bread

Bob's BBQ Pit, Tacoma, BBQ, Rib bits, ribs, sausage, hot links, pork, beef, collard, greens, baked, beans, corn bread

Given that I just had collard greens in Southern Kitchen, I thought I should go for it as well here. And, for the most part, they were quite similar, except for one “small” difference: here, it had bacon! Hmmmm…. Bacon!!!! As for the beans… Well, they were kind of good; however, for some reason that reminded me of a can of pork and beans. Now, this comment can go both ways, as I have some fond memories of eating canned pork and beans. Instead it is whether they didn’t really prepare it themselves or if they mastered it. I am leaning more towards the later due to the fact there were actual pieces of… BACON!!!! So, yes, feel free to call me bias but it was good… :)

Bob's BBQ Pit, Tacoma, BBQ, Rib bits, ribs, sausage, hot links, pork, beef, collard, greens, baked, beans, corn bread

My order also came with a cornbread and some sliced bread. Not sure why the white sliced bread but, at least it served a purpose (more in a moment). As for the corn bread, it didn’t “crumble” but had a slight sweetness in it (compared to the corn cake from Southern Kitchen). It was OK and served as a filler for the meal.

Bob's BBQ Pit, Tacoma, BBQ, Rib bits, ribs, sausage, hot links, pork, beef, collard, greens, baked, beans, corn bread

Finally, back to the meats. Again, I ordered rib tips and hot links. I chose not to go for the full ribs because, well, just because. Likewise, I chose to skip the beef and the pork because I was feeling adventurous here (though I was having doubts myself about them due to the lack of clientele at the moment). In a way, that went both ways. The reason for me behind the rib tips is that it shares some of the meat type as the ribs but almost none of the bones (no “falling off the bone” experiment here). For the most part, it worked fine, as the meat was quite tender; however, it had issues of its own. That is, while most of the morsels were tender, there were there occasional dry pieces as well. As for the sausage, it had a generic feeling, though, it had some interesting “snap” plus some spiciness in it.

Bob's BBQ Pit, Tacoma, BBQ, Rib bits, ribs, sausage, hot links, pork, beef, collard, greens, baked, beans, corn bread

And here is what I ended up using the bread for: to soak out the sauce it was smother on. The sauce was neither vinegar-y nor tomato-ey, though, if I had to take I side, I would lean towards the vinegar-y side. The fact it wasn’t that warm and the consistency not sticky enough didn’t work that well for me. However, what did work for me was that it did have some heat. In the end, it was sort of a mismatch between all the different components on the plate.

Overall, I would say I wasn’t impressed by the offerings but, at the same time, I won’t say it was bad. Given the location, I can’t help wonder what is their turnover; however, at least, what ended up on the table was edible. Would I come back? Actually, I am willing to try another time, this time going for the ribs as well as the pork. And, if I do, it better be during lunch time.



{ 3 comments… read them below or add one }

1 Mijune August 6, 2010 at 1:04 am

Thanks so much for the shout out Kim! Ok I hate to say it… but after Texas BBQ… this does not stand a chance. Like you said, the Pacific Northwest is not known for BBQ and being in the South I was super spoiled. I’m afraid I’ll just be dissappointed by everything else now… although Boonies was still delicious! We will go. And that’s on the WESTCOAST! Yay Vancouver… eerr Langley. =p

Back to your post… the sauce on the meat does not look good and it doesn’t look like traditional BBQ sauce. I love saucy BBQ, but not THAT kind of sauce. Also the white sliced bread is SO typical of old fashioned traditional Southern BBQ :)… so I guess that’s a good thing they had it! You usually eat it with cheese, pickles and meat though.

2 KimHo August 6, 2010 at 6:32 am

Mijune, yeah, there was only that much you could expect… >_< But, yeah, I still have to go to Boonies. Wonder who will volunteer… :)

3 Sherman August 6, 2010 at 9:49 am

I agree with Mijune, the sauce looks not so good. Not a big fan of rib tips myself cuz it does tend to get dry. I don’t like dry meat. In terms of BBQ in the PNW, wait until I visit Portland, I got 3 BBQ places lined up!

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