All Things BBQ is just about at an end. Here’s a few spots that didn’t get a solo treatment, but bear mentioning as the “best of the rest.”
1127 W. Morena Boulevard, San Diego
Bull’s Smokin’ BBQ: Good, solid, Texas-style ‘cue. Smoky, tender, and served on a spacious, dog-friendly patio. Problem with Bull’s is that it comes across as expensive. Small portions, at a price point that’s at the very top of the range for SD’s barbecue restaurants, do a lot of harm to Bull’s ranking in All Things BBQ.
1201 First Street, Coronado
Lil’ Piggy’s Bar-B-Q: Of note mostly because it’s on the other side of the bridge. Even Crown City has its own barbecue spot and an honorable mention in All Things BBQ. Piggy’s is part of the Blue Bridge Hospitality group, making it a sister restaurant to Leroy’s, MooTime, and Village Pizzeria, among others. Is Lil’ Piggy’s any good? Yes and no. The kitchen has a proper smoker, but the ‘cue comes out average, with the level of smokiness you’d expect from an Alto-Shaam, not a big, old-fashioned barbecue pit. It’s more of a problem that Piggy’s swarms with tourists, both those unloading from the ferry and those waiting to get back to mainland SD after a rousing day exploring the “island.” The best thing on the menu is a “Texas potato” ($9.49). That’s a baked spud loaded with cheese sauce, pulled pork, sour cream, barbecue sauce, and green onions. Because, you know, the one thing missing from pulled pork is a ladleful of molten cheese!
1356 West Valley Parkway, Escondido
Mike’s BBQ: North County isn’t exactly swarming with barbecue joints, but Mike’s has it more or less covered. Mike’s is more of a “mesquite grill” than a “barbecue pit,” kind of place, so expect quality and style to match up with BBQ House and its ilk. Where most ‘cue houses maintain small-ish menus limited to meat and sides, with a few extraneous items for kicks, Mike’s lets the menu sprawl and sprawl and sprawl. $20 ribeye steak dinner? Yes, please. Half-and-half burgers made with ground bacon or sausage ($9.50)? Ok. Brisket pizza (~$10)? Eff yeah! Why not throw fish tacos ($3.99) on the menu while you’re at it?
Now, all that’s left is to line 'em up and pick the absolute best.
You know you want to see it. Stay tuned!