hearing at Lucky 13
Other than a spiffy
name, Everett & Jones, there is nothing remarkable about the place.
the other fellows were ordering their Q I took the opportunity to
have a peek around the neighborhood. I explored an alleyway next
to the freeway and with every step a new spotlight shined to guide
my way. How nice of the residents to keep the alley safe. I
decided that an intruder might not be welcome so I made haste back
to the deserted
street and into the comfort of E & J.
I decided to go light
on my order, already wondering why we'd journeyed across the bridge
when Memphis Minnie's is so close and so
you gotta see what's out there. I went for the pork ribs (small),
called an open-faced sandwich. Not really a sandwich but a goodly
portion of ribs for $6.50. The meat was okay but not particularly
flavorful; the sauce I requested was spicy and quite good. The
bread, slices of white, part of the sandy, were on the side and came
in handy for
soaking up some o' the sauce. My meal came with decent potato
salad but I was disappointed that no cornbread was available.
the meal was decent, worth the price of admission but not the commute. If
you live in Oakland maybe give it a try, or you could head over this
way and check out Memphis Minnie's. Or, better yet, let
us know where the great BBQ is in the East Bay.
"Do you know
what it's like to fall in the mud and get kicked, in the head, with
an iron boot? Of course you don't, no one does, that never happens."*
But that's what it's like trying to find a plate of decent barbecue
in this region. Heck, we went ALL THE WAY to Oakland looking for it,
only to feel again the sting from the iron boot of mediocre 'cue.
get me wrong, it's okay "food" they're serving up there
at Everett and Jones. But when one has supped at the likes of Arthur
Bryant's in Missouri, The Georgia Pig in Georgia, and Kreuz's Market
in Texas, one develops standards. Standards so high they can never
be matched, perhaps. But such is my lot in life, and I refuse to
that good BBQ can't be produced in San Francisco! I won't abide it!
had high hopes for Everett and Jones, as they seem to be somewhat
legendary. Award winning, I believe. So we actually ventured over
a bridge, out of the city, for the first freaking time (as the Füd
Court.) They've got several locations, E&J do, but we went to
this one for no particular reason. I assume the food's all the same.
a down-homey kind of soul kitchen place, if you like that kind of
thing. I do, and had the hopes.
I went for the 2-Way
Combo, pork ribs and beef brisket. I also ordered a side of beans to
go with my potato salad and bread (which come
with everything). But the beans never showed up. By the time I
finished, I was so demoralized I didn't even bother. Not sure if I
them or not. Think I was. That two-way goes for $10.75, and is
probably worth it based on portion size. But my "ribs" were
barely recognizable as ribs. I guess I got the last of the end pieces
or something, because
it was half gristle and not one full-bone meaty rib was to be had.
The sauce was good enough, and it better be, because they put it on
But the rib meat was hardly smoky tasting at all. Disappointing.
The brisket, as I recall, was tough, and also not that smoky. The menu
it's "smoked for hours in our brick pit with a special marinade
that gives it the tasty outer crust," but I just don't buy
it. Well, I bought it, but I won't buy it again. The potato salad
was potato salad
and the bread was bread. I think it was actually that white-wheat
bread, not white bread proper. Which is fine, but I can get that
out of a bag
At the risk of sounding
like a broken record, Memphis Minnie's is still the only decent barbecue
I've had in San Francisco.
Cliff's next, and maybe Bo's (way out in wherever) that's supposed
to be good. Maybe there's hope. But for now, this BBQ quest is
make a preacher lay down his bible.
* Rex Kramer, Airplane
you heard of an underchange? We hadn't either. Before this.
See, things took on new meaning, new emotions were felt, and new words
invented as the judges and Randy Half-Man Half-Antin drove over the
Bay Bridge for the very first time in Füd Court history.
I'm not kidding! It really happened. And I'm not sure we were prepared.
In the photo here, Judge McC wears a fearful, perplexed look as he
inspects the directions. I wore one too -- we all did. Especially when
lost and began to speak of the underchange.
"Aren't we supposed to go under that…underchange there?"
"We just went under that. And why are you calling it an underchange?"
"I am perplexed."
"Do the directions say anything about an underchange?"
"I have the fear."
from our conversation in the Ninja's Jetta, whose soft blue digital
interior glow was not enough to soothe
on this occasion. We
were rattled by the time we found Everett & Jones, but the Ninja
found a spot right in front (just as he had earlier in front of Lucky
and the sweet smell of smoke passed over the underchange of our noses,
and soon we had adjusted our attitudes.
have. Because quickly we were disillusioned and despondent (why do
I use this word
so much in restaurant reviews?) at the taste
and tenderness of our two-way combos. Lack of tenderness, I should
say. The meat on the ribs required incredible industry just to
chew into swallowing
condition. How can rib meat be like that? But, here in the East
Bay, land of underchanges, it was, and we cursed ourselves for crossing
say the beef links were excellent. They were pre-sauced, like everything
else. Everett & Jones's sauce is pretty
good, and these links were very good. Homemade, hand-stuffed, with
a nice kick (I ordered hot sauce).
If I went back, I think I'd get those, and nothing else. But I
don't think I'll go back. It's too far away. On the Bay Area barbecue
I'd put Everett & Jones a distant third behind Memphis Minnie's
and Brother-in-Law's. Next stop on the barbecue trail: Cliff's.
Guest Judge Ninja