Diners detect the smoky aroma of their meals before the server even arrives. Within moments, the diners behold a table full of the chefs' specialties?baby-back ribs, pulled pork braised overnight, and beef ribs possessing bones thick enough to double as barbells. In addition to barbecuing meats to fall-off-the-bone tenderness, chefs prepare an array of traditional sides, ranging from corn muffins to collard greens. For group gatherings, Ribs USA's team bundles five catering packages for parties of up to 200.
Danny Fischer is no stranger to being a fish out of water in the culinary world. As a kid, he helped out at his father's rib joint in Philadelphia, a city better known for its cheesesteaks than its barbecue. Using that experience, he joined forces with his longtime friend, Rick McCarthy, whose family owns a soul-food restaurant in Georgia, to open LA's Baby Blues BBQ.
Their different backgrounds and regional techniques form what the pair calls hybrid barbecue. Here's a rundown of all the regions represented on the menu.
Memphis: Though Danny is hesitant to call any single item on Baby Blues BBQ's menu its specialty, the Memphis ribs certainly stand out. Prepared in the St. Louis style?with the fat and brisket bone cut off?they're dry rubbed with a mixture that's half brown sugar, half 19-spice blend. After slow smoking for about five hours, which chars the rub into a crispy bark, the ribs are grilled until they sizzle.
North Carolina: The aforementioned Memphis ribs are finished with a light wash of sauce. Like all of Baby Blues' made-from-scratch sauces, the sauce uses a traditional North Carolina vinegar base. Pulled-pork sandwiches are also a nod to North Carolina recipes, though Danny puts his own spin on them by smoking the shoulder meat in Guinness.
Texas: The Texas-style beef ribs are, perhaps predictably, significantly larger than the Memphis ribs. They're big, rich, and marbled, yet still delicate enough to be dismantled with a fork.
The Gulf Coast: Although the menu is brimming with barbecue meals, it also includes seafood dishes. Grilled shrimp are topped with a New Orleans?style r?moulade, and the catfish filet is seasoned with Cajun spices and encrusted in cornmeal before it is blackened in a cast-iron skillet.
Mr. Cecil's California Ribs is a unique Los Angeles ribs restaurant. Chef Jonathan Burrows takes western American barbeque, adds a slight Asian influence, then infuses California freshness and the highest quality ingredients - like organic chicken and vegetables - along with a menu that includes fish and salads
From the bustling streets of Times Square to the equally vivacious streets of Hong Kong, people walk around with smiles after enjoying the japanese barbecue cuisine at Gyu-Kaku. The restaurant has more than 700 locations worldwide, each rooted in the belief that some of the strongest bonds between friends are forged at the dinner table. Groups dine on a huge variety of Japanese dishes, from popular meat and veggie dishes such as Harami Skirt Steak, Kalbi Short Rib, and Mushroom Medley - to unique Japanese-American appetizers such as the Spicy Tuna Volcano, Pork Gyoza Dumplings, and Chicken Karaage. The real excitement takes place around individual grills, however, where diners can barbecue their own slabs of filet mignon, grilled ahi tuna, or chicken with basil sauce until they are ideally tender or encircled by on-duty firemen.