My husband is a lover of BBQ. And the Boston area is a hard place to live if you love BBQ. He used to frequent Red Bones in Davis Square when he lived over there, and then Blue Ribbon, and more recently Red Eyed Pig in West Roxbury, where we live. All we have agreed are decent, but nothing ever blew us away when we ate there.
Last year we read about a new restaurant opened by Tiffany Faison from the first season of Top Chef (one of my absolute favorite shows on tv) called Sweet Cheeks Q in the Fenway area. I actually drive by the location every week on my way into the city, and we talked frequently about how we needed to get our butts there ASAP. Last week my husband came home from work (he is a lawyer in the city) and told me, "I have something to tell you, and I hope it doesn't make you mad." Of course my mind is going crazy thinking the worst, but he says "today at lunch I was craving BBQ and I took the T out to Fenway and ate at Sweet Cheeks by myself. And it changed my life."
Ok, he might not have said "it changed my life," but he did go on to explain for many minutes it was the best BBQ he has ever had, and told me in detail about the menu, and how the place was so cool and I will love it... blah blah blah. So for his birthday dinner this past Saturday we went to Sweet Cheeks Q with M in tow.
At 5:30, the place was already BUMPING. We only waited a couple minutes for a seat at one of the family style dining tables (where you have other parties siting at the same table on either side - thought I would hate it but didn't!). The table we were at had 3 other parties - all with children! So that right away was a great sign for me.
Right away I knew what I wanted - Brisket and pork belly with mac n' cheese and carrot salad (you get to pick your meat and with it comes a scoop of "hot" and a scoop of "cold" side choices.) To start we had some of the homemade biscuits...and as soon as I took the first bite of one, lathered in honey butter, I can honestly say my life changed.
Sounds so dramatic to talk about food like that, but HOLY CRAPBALLS! This food, from the first bite of biscuity-goodness, was mind-blowing. The meat? What?! OMG the meat! I can still taste the meaty deliciousness in my mouth (and this is where my husband would say "that's what she said!" and I would give him my "are you serious?" look). The pork belly was the best I have ever had, and while I haven't had many briskets in my life, this was hands down the best one I will ever have - EVER. I seriously could eat this food every night. I think our waiter thought I was insane because I was at a lack for words when he asked me how everything was just saying "Wow...wow" over and over. My mouth is watering right now thinking about it...
I was so overwhelmed by how good the meat was that I didn't really pay enough attention to the sides, and I love me some sides. The mac n cheese was very good, and it had ritz crackers on top, which I love with my mac n cheese, and M loved it too. The carrot salad was delicious with nuts and rainsins, and a little added blue cheese - but I was so full I didn't get to really enjoy it as much as I would have liked.
I was dying to try some of Tiffany's libations on the drink menu, as I know from watching her on Top Chef that she likes her booze, but being 5 months pregnant doesn't so much allow that. And the music they play, while a little loud, had me chair dancing at the table - I love me some good old southern hip-hop, with some classics like Biggie mixed in!
Oh and the ladies room has a Dolly Parton theme! How can a restaurant that has a Dolly Parton themed ladies room not be amazing?
Seriously, you all need to go to Sweet Cheeks now. Go! Now! Get your meat sweats on (and by meat sweats I mean the sweats you get after eating a ton of meat and you are so full, but you can't stop eating...not the sweatpants you wear when you plan to eat a lot). Hell, get on your meat sweats to go have a meat sweat at Sweet Cheeks. It is amazing. I would go there in a heartbeat over any of my fancy faves downtown. And it is crazy kid friendly, so take your kids. M loved everything we had (of course we called it bacon when we were giving it to her, as she loves bacon like her parents do).
I can't wait to pop out this child and go get my drink and eat on again at Sweet Cheeks, and maybe I will end up dancing on a table instead of in a chair at a table.
Just keeping it classy...that's how I roll.