So while on vacation we made a stop in D.C. and of course I had to find some BBQ. I had been to a joint up there before and wanted to try out their Arlington location since that is where we were staying. Because their Georgetown location was very good when I visited there earlier this year I had high expectations for this location as well.
|Three meat platter|
I was there with my wife and some friends of mine from college and convinced them all to go and that it should be a good meal. When we arrived there was not a strong smell of smoke outside and that seemed odd considering smoke was pouring out of the G-town location. I ordered a three meat platter with chicken, pulled pork, and beef with sides of mac n cheese and potato salad. My wife had the beef sandwich while Greg had the pork sandwich and Zee had some beef ribs. I must say that I was highly disappointed in the Arlington location and it seems like lack of outside smoke presence was a sign of things to come. I will say that my meats were all tender, moist and not overcooked. However, outside of the smoke there was no real sense of flavor. I always think that a good rub flavor should compliment the flavor of smoke, and without that combination the meat just isn’t complete. No one with me seemed overly satisfied with their meal either. It wasn’t terrible, but it wasn’t great. I found myself apologizing for dragging everyone down there, and kept talking about the G-town location. I mean it is bad when you go to a Q joint and the best thing on my plate is the potato salad.
I still want to give them the benefit of the doubt and say that maybe we caught them at a bad time. It was the break between the lunch and dinner rushes so maybe ours wasn’t the freshest batch. This is what I had to tell myself upon leaving and it was also discussed at our table. I will also say that their sauce is pretty good. It is a traditional bbq sauce, and I really like the way it is served. Instead of in bottles on the table, it is sitting in a kettle up front where it can stay hot and the onion flavor is constantly being warmed through it. So the sauce was able to save the day somewhat, and again, sauce should compliment the meat, rub, and smoke flavor and should never be the savior.
I will say though that if you happen to be in D.C. and what some good Q, head over to the Rocklands location in Georgetown and not the one in Arlington. You can find their addresses and more information at their website: www.rocklands.com.