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Thursday, March 22, 2007

Review-Lucille's BBQ in Lake Forest

Went to Lucille’s BBQ the other night and thought Id post a quick review.

First off we started with a couple of Lucille’s Microbrews….I had the Lucille’s Amber while the wife had the Lucille’s Blond. Both good beers. I think theyre made for Lucille’s by some mysterious beer making company. My wife ordered the Black Tiger Shrimp while I order one of the combo samplers.

The think I will say about Lucille’s is it is pricey for BBQ. The price I paid for the my dinner Im sure I could have ordered a real kick ass Fish dish at Kings Fish House so I’m proud to say the food didn’t disappoint.

The Wife’s shrimp had a nice flavor. The Menu described it as Shrimp sautéed in BBQ sauce. I think they must have lightened up the sauce a bit or maybe the sauce simply diluted with whatever oil or butter they sautéed it in. However they did it, it worked wonderfully. Her plate also came with some type of Spinach as well as some Cheese Grits. Its been a long time since Ive eaten spinach and it certainly harked back to the days when eating spinach meant my Mom opening a can of Green Giant. The grits were very good as well although Ive nothing to compare them to as growing up in Orange County grits were hardly the staple they are in the South. As a matter of fact-this may very well be the first time Ive had grits entirely.

My plate has ½ a chicken, some pulled pork, and ½ rack of Baby Back Ribs. The Chicken was good although I questioned why I chose it in the first place as Ive become quite adept at BBQ Chicken and as a rule of thumb will never order anything at a restaurant that I feel I could make better at home. It was good though and had a strong dose of white pepper. The Pulled Pork was good as well but for the price I paid for the plate expected a little bit more generous of portion. The Baby Backs were a real treat though. If I ever make it back to Lucille’s rest assured I will get the full serving of Baby Backs and nothing else. They were very tender and very lean yet every morsel of rib was covered with some sauce/dry rub/smoke. Great Rib. I also had the shoestring potatoes(standard shoestring fare), the BBQ Beans(very good with hearty bacon/onion flavor), and the Garlic Mashed Potatoes(not horrible-but some of the other things were so much better they didn’t stand out.) Friends also raved about the biscuits and the apple butter but quite frankly it wasn’t amazingly good. Sure they were good….just not amazingly good.

To me Lucille’s stands out as a place that curtails for people who want BBQ but don’t want to go to the hole if the wall places to find it and don’t mind paying extra for “premium” BBQ if there is such a think. The Location in Lake Forest was packed and while we got there semi-early and had no problem getting a table by the time we left there was a long wait. Also a bit disappointed in that the bar had no happy hour-this really sets it apart from Kings Fish House that has a great Happy Hour. Both places are very similar in setup and approach and price for that matter. If you want premium BBQ and not afraid to pay for it Lucille’s is a great bet. If you want the most bang for your buck Im sure there are tons of other BBQ places that will meet your needs and once again for the price I paid on the bill Im sure I could have had an amazing meal at Kings Fish House. If you do visit-skip the chicken and go straight for the Baby Backs. They were perfectly done and even though the table had 3 different kinds of sauces you didn’t need it at all.

I give Lucilles a solid B, maybe a B+. If the prices were a bit more reasonable no reason it wouldn’t have gotten an A though and Im sure for real BBQ purist the overtly sanitized enviroment will probably be a bit different from your normal barbecuery.

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