Thursday, 24 July 2014

Jim Neely’s Interstate Barbecue

Interstate Barbecue, Memphis
Interstate Barbecue, Memphis
Interstate Barbecue is yet another shining example of a side of the road, non-descript place that has been around forever selling great barbecue. The walls are filled with autographs of A-List celebrities (MC Hammer, Sybil Shepherd) who have graced Interstate for the same reasons that I did – excellent BBQ.

As we all know, Memphis is a dry rib town. Ribs are typically not sauced but given a sprinkling of rub seasoning upon service. Interstate is an exception and was a welcome one. And finally I am getting the thicker St. Louis cut spare ribs that have thus far eluded me. The ribs were nicely rubbed, fairly smoky and adorned with a fairly spicy tomato-based sauce. This sauce was a bit of a surprise, as I have not tasted any notable sauces yet in Tennessee so this was a very welcome surprise.  For those of you who are not saucy rib loving folk, you can probably ask for them dry. If you do, I highly recommend some sauce on the side.
Interstate Barbecue ribs
Interstate Barbecue ribs

As for sides, the beans were by far the best I have had these last 10 days. Dark in colour, rich in flavour and nice and thick. As some of you know, I make a rich and spicy baked bean recipe and this was up my proverbial alley. The slaw was nice and reminded me a bit of that found in North Carolina. Tightly chopped, not too wet, flavorful, with a hint of carrot.  Has any food blogger every written those four stamens in a single sentance before?

Finally, yet another BBQ lover running the restaurant was kind enough to show us the pit and share some insight. And a pattern is emerging here with respect to the usage of commercial smokers veruss traditional pits, woods, cooking times and target smoker temperatures.

We were not the lone travelers of the BBQ trail that night; we met another group that had come from the other direction – Texas. We swapped notes and felt vindicated that we are hitting the right places after a shaky start in Nashville.

2265 S 3rd St, Memphis, TN 38109
Phone: (901) 775 2304

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