Thursday, August 24, 2006

Review: Big Bubba's BBQ

Big Bubba’s BBQ
Mohegan Sun Casino
Uncasville, CT

The last place in the world one would think they could find some pretty good BBQ would be at an Indian casino in Connecticut. However, Big Bubba’s BBQ is able to pull it off with a reasonable degree of success. While it is a little pricey, Bubba’s is the best commercial Q I have been able to find in Southeastern Connecticut, which is the region where I live.

Big Bubba’s is located upstairs in the newer part of the Mohegan Sun Casino in Uncasville, Connecticut. The space is large and open with plenty of tables; along with a large bar that features several flat screen TV’s. The walls are adorned with old advertisements, and the bar area is flooded with sports pennants and banners.

Once at the table, the roll up containing the silverware is a towel, which I thought was a cool touch. Also, there is a six-pack holder on each table containing several different sauces, a Memphis BBQ sauce, a hot BBQ sauce, a Carolina mustard sauce, a hickory smoke sauce and a habanero hot sauce. Most of their Q is served dry, leaving it to the diner to choose their sauce.

I've eaten at Bubba's more than ten times and overall, I feel the BBQ is very good. For ribs, they serve Kansas City Style spares, but occasionally offer baby backs as a special. They also feature BBQ beef, pulled pork and chicken, along with Kentucky lamb. The meat has a strong, smoky flavor and a nice touch of spice. The “Big Bubbaque” is a great sampling of all their best offerings, a platter of pork, brisket, ribs, and Louisiana links. However, it’s not cheap at $24.95.

My last visit to Bubba’s, I had the two-meat combo sandwich with beef and pork. The meat was piled high and was excellent, served with a side order of potato salad and slaw. In previous visits I have sampled the ribs, and was very impressed with their chicken, which was juicy and flavorful. Mid-weeks, they offer an all you can eat ribs and chicken special, perfect for those with big appetites.

Their large menu offers much more than BBQ, with a definite slant towards southern comfort food. Steaks, burgers, fish, Po-boys, fried chicken, and even salads are all on the menu. Appetizers feature such southern staples as biscuits and gravy, hush puppies with honey butter; onion rings with bleu cheese dressing and Texas chili. They also have trash ribs, which are the burnt ends from their entrée ribs, which are a good way to sample their ribs if you’re really in the mood for something else. Look out for the cartilage though!

Haven’t tried dessert yet, usually I’m feeling too full from all the Q to partake. Offerings include pecan pie, chocolate cake and sweet potato pie.

Service is decent at the tables, but watch out for the bar. On several visits I have found the bartenders to be gruff and unaccommodating. On two different occasions, I stood at the bar for more than ten minutes before I could get bar service. Stick to the tables.

In summary, I like Big Bubba’s BBQ. It is expensive for a BBQ restaurant, but that has a lot to do with the location. If you’re in the area or are visiting the casino and have Q on your mind, it is probably worth the trip. If you live in Eastern Connecticut and want good Q, you don’t have too many other choices.

The menu:

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