When Travis Dickey opened the first Dickey's Barbecue Pit in Dallas in 1941, he kept his menu small and simple, only cooking up beef brisket, pit hams, and barbecue beans, which he sold alongside potato chips, beer, bottled milk, and sodas. Dickey smoked all of his meat in-house, a practice that put his eatery on the map and one that his sons, Roland and T.D. Dickey, still rely on today.
The menu has expanded since Travis’s time behind the grill, offering plates and sandwiches that brim with nine kinds of barbecued meats, including spicy cheddar sausages, pork ribs, polish sausage, and Texas-style beef brisket that’s chopped to order. Four types of baked potatoes are piled high with meats and cheeses, which diners can wash down with a gallon of tea or Dickey's signature 32-ounce "big yellow cup" of soda. Staying true to the same spirit of hospitality that helped Dickey's franchise swell to more than 200 spots around the country, cooks at each location always include a buttery roll, a homestyle side, such as jalapeño beans and fried okra, dill pickles, and free ice cream with every meat plate.
After Al Boyce retired from playing football for the Kansas City Chiefs, a new world was calling to him: the rib-sticking world of soul food. After starting his first venture in Kansas City, Boyce began populating the Atlanta area with southern cooking in the form of Chazz’s Place, a pair of eateries named after his son. Al’s Barbeque is his fourth restaurant, where the scent of slow-smoked boneless meat sluices through the air and induces salivation like a rabbit placed in front of Elmer Fudd. Heaping plates of shrimp and grits compete for attention with barbecue ribs, pork chops, and chicken that’s grilled or southern-fried with buttermilk. Housemade sides of collard greens, baked beans, and black-eyed peas round out each meal.
Mr. D's sauce-wielding chefs seal juicy flavor into slow roasted meats with delicious hickory smoke and tangy barbecue flavors to create a massive smokehouse menu. Drizzled barbecue clings like an entourage of flavor to the smoldering meat of the St. Louis style ribs ($12.99 half slab), seared in the heat of hickory flames and public adoration. The pulled beef brisket ($8.79 half pound) overtakes plates with mountainous piles and saucy altitudes, scaled by the brave, buttery crunch of the fried corn on the cob ($3.95). In an act of nutritious comeuppance, sweet teeth sink into the sugary candied yams ($3.95), finally fooled into eating a vegetable. Tikes and toddlers can order fist-sized portions off the children's menu, while entire clans share the spoils found in family meals.
Bar favorites, burgers, and finger-friendly grub pepper the chilly Coldbrew's menu. Start with an order of chips and salsa ($2.95), mozzarella sticks ($5.95), or shrimp-scampi skewers ($6.95). Smaller selections such as the rib basket ($8.95) and the bite-size corn dogs served with mustard dipping sauce ($6.95) appease quieter appetites. Aside from fried fare, Coldbrew's also offers a variety of homemade soups and fresh salads. Try the grilled-chicken salad bedded atop mixed greens and tossed with tomatoes, cheese, and croutons ($7.95) or the glazed salmon ($9.95) with citrus-honey glaze, mixed greens, tomatoes, and sweet carrots. The exhaustive burger, sandwich, and wrap selection covers all bun bases, with everything from a low-calorie black-bean burger ($6.95) to a spicy buffalo wrap with blue-cheese dressing for dipping ($7.95).