As a former Texan, I’m cursed. No really. I have incredibly high standards when it comes to barbeque and Tex-Mex/Mexican food. The Bostonians I’ve met are always willing to provide recommendations for places to try – places that they LOVE. It’s hard to for me to try these and then report back that I didn’t really like them. (Honestly though, since I’m half Southern/half Mid-Western, it’s really tough for me to tell someone I didn’t enjoy their favorite BBQ joint as much as they did.)
I’m not saying that I have never found Mexican or BBQ that I liked, it’s just really hard to compare to the source. It’s the same with Boston’s seafood or clam chowder. There is probably no way that you’d find such incredible dishes in the South or Mid-West. It’s just not what they’re known for.
However, I was incredibly excited to find out that former Top Chef contestant Tiffani Faison’s had helped start a restaurant that focused on Texas-style BBQ, I was over the moon excited to try it.
Despite having to wait about 20-30 minutes to grab a table, I came pretty hungry – and the food came quickly! My table started with the homemade biscuits which came with honey butter, the hush puppies and fried okra. The biscuits were my absolute favorite part of the apps we ordered, with the fried okra coming in second. It just reminded me of being in Texas and I couldn’t get enough.
For my main course, I had the ribs with black-eyed peas and potato salad. The ribs were really good – and Sweet Cheeks provides three different sauces on every table: hot, traditional and vinegar-based. I went with the traditional but if you like spicy sauces, you’ll probably enjoy the hot version.
All in all, the trip was awesome. The wait was absolutely worth it, even if at the time, I was dying for food. I loved the atmosphere. Even the bathrooms were funky, as the woman’s contained framed photos of Dolly Parton, burning candles and a sticker vending machine.
I’ll definitely be returning for a BBQ fix and hopefully, comparing it to a few other joints in the area like Blue Ribbon. Next time, I’ll try to save room for dessert. The key word being TRY.
Update: This post was originally written in early January. Since that time I have been back to Sweet Cheeks, and tried the pork belly (OMG) and the pecan chocolate pie turnover (whoa!). All I can say is that I ate way too much – and it was still totally awesome.