It was during our visit to the Greater Good in Tucker a couple of weeks back, that we determined exactly where we would have our 4th of July ribs. You see, ever since the 4th of July rib incident of 2012 (the entire experience is detailed in the footnote to this post), we’ve made plans in advance to prepare for Independence Day ribs. After finishing the Peachtree Road Race, we headed up Roswell Road from Buckhead to the ITP location of the Greater Good Barbecue. Arriving shortly after noon, they were doing a bustling carry out business, but we were eating in. We grabbed a table against the wall (they also have plenty of outside seating) and waited for the menu. The menu is similar to the Tucker location, but not a carbon copy – they had neither the incredible green beans nor the white sauce served with their chicken – but we had come for ribs.
After the thin-sauced, bland pork and beans from the prior visit, Jo was a bit concerned about them. In talking with the server, she offered and brought out a sample and they were much thicker. And much better. Jo ordered a half rack of ribs, with baked beans and potato salad (that had looked appealing, on another diner’s plate, through the window). In about ten minutes, our plates arrived.
We asked for all of the meats dry. To recap the sauces:
- their house sauce was okay and it seemed to be the basis for at least two of the others;
- the sweet sauce was like the house sauce, with more molasses or brown sugar – it was thick and sweet and tasty;
- the hot sauce was like the house sauce, but had a kick to it, being my second favorite of the group; But
- the “Carolina” sauce was wonderful – like a mix of two classic Carolina sauces. Half mustardy / half vinegar and pepper flakes equals all good. It was exceptional.
I ordered the Big Smokey (a three meat combo plate) with ribs, brisket and smoked chicken wings and double fries.
AARGH – I forgot about the pickles! Removing those, before the juice defiled the brisket, I found the brisket to be fork tender, with a rendered fat cap, and quickly made a half sandwich from the one piece of grilled toast, two slices of brisket and the Carolina sauce. The brisket was very good, better than the pork on the last visit. The chicken wings were fried, them smoked, and I dipped them in the Carolina sauce between bites. They were good, but not spectacular. But, as ribs are the crowning glory of Independence Day lunch:
The ribs were very good – prepared with a slightly sweet rub that allowed the bark to char beautifully. A great meal to re-load from a morning’s walk.
If you’re a frequent reader, you may recall that the other star from the last meal was the chicken. Then why didn’t we order it for lunch? Because we took two half chickens home for dinner.
Before we left, lured by the smoke, I swung out back to take a look at their smokehouse, which is behind these wood stacks. But I couldn’t get a clear view (or picture) of the smoker, through the dark screen.