Three Dogz Diner serves up traditional American diner fare and Southern cuisine for breakfast and lunch in a cozy, kid-friendly diner environment. Smoking specialists layer beef or pork barbeque ($5.99) and turkey sandwiches ($5.99) with thin slices of meat that has been seasoned with special dry rubs and sauces, then slowly smoked on-site over the objections of hoarse smoke detectors. The steak and cheese loads almost a pound of brisket grilled with veggies and american cheese onto an 8-inch roll ($8.39), and daily specials add edible unpredictability throughout the week. For breakfast, sample the biscuits and gravy, with two homemade biscuits bobbing in a sea of homemade sausage gravy accompanied by a pair of eggs any style ($5.79). Sneaky chefs poach the finest eggs from Faberge farms for the eggs benedict, then stack them on english muffins, add succulent ham, and smother the steaming stacks in hollandaise sauce ($6.79).
The American BBQ, which was featured on "The Phantom Gourmet," has its cooks dry-rub each cut of their meat with a house blend of spices and seasonings before placing them in a wood smoker for up to 16 hours. Sliced beef brisket, pulled pork, and pulled chicken fill sandwiches or rest on plates next to sides such as southern greens or homemade potato chips. Classic memphis-style pork ribs arrive at the table in a third rack, half rack, or full rack, which diners can fashion into makeshift xylophones after their meals. Inside both locations, rustic adornments dapple the walls, from vintage Coca-Cola signs to weathered road signs.
Offering up authentic Southern-style barbeque, Lester's meats are rubbed with seasonings and spices and are infused with the flavors of hickory and oak as they slow-cook in Lester’s genuine Texas Bar-B-Q “pit.” Check out the menu before plunging face first into starters such as the brisket plate with smashed potatoes, pan gravy, and green beans ($12.49). Grab a North Carolina pulled-pork platter with two side dishes and cornbread ($11.49), or try out pit-smoked barbecue in sandwich form served with a side of your choice and homemade pickles. Fill gullets with other meat-sterpieces such as St. Louis dry-rub ribs ($6.99–$23.99), barbecue chicken ($8.49–$11.49), and red-hot smoked sausage ($6.99–$11.49), or opt for deluxe hamburgers, hearty salads, sumptuous sides, and fresh desserts.
At its Dover location, The Farm Bar & Grille serves hearty plates of home-style food inside what else but a big red barn. But just as the familiar comfort food gives way to subtle surprises, the barn hides an 80-person outdoor deck, in full view of the Cocheco River. Yet, despite the picturesque vista, the best part about dining amid the fresh air might be the barbecue smell. A mammoth smoker rests just beneath the deck, releasing the aroma of slow-roasted baby-back ribs, fall-off-the-bone chicken, and pulled pork, piled onto platters and sandwiches or wrapped inside quesadillas and burritos.
Across the city, The Farm Bar & Grille pops up again, this time in Manchester. The menu is the same: half-pound burgers, sandwiches stacked atop Virgilio’s Bakery bread delivered fresh daily, and hearty comfort food, such as chicken pot pies and meatloaf dinners, and what NHmagazine.com calls the “Best Pulled Pork." Here, rustic furniture crafted, as NewHampshire.com discovered, from an old barn fills the cozy, red-walled space. A cute chalkboard mural of a moonlit farm hangs behind the bar, where servers offer 20 kinds of draft beer.
The kitchen at Brodie’s Pub elevates typical bar bites with quality ingredients, such as Angus steak tips and turkey tenderloins. Bowls of housemade chili and chowder whet taste buds for elaborate sandwiches, such as veggie-stuffed chicken-teriyaki pockets and the Famous Philips burger, whose housemade italian sausage has never signed an autograph. An array of beers and other drinks are available to complement any entree, from barbecued-turkey-tip salad to fried chicken wings served buffalo-style or with duck sauce.
“Basta, basta!” The words may as well be a mantra at Midwest Grill. The term, meaning “enough” in Portuguese, is the perfect finish to the churrascaria’s all-you-can-eat cavalcade of grilled meats and hearty seafood dishes. Passadores—the Brazilian word for waiters—rotate around tables, slicing fresh-grilled skewers of beef sirloin, Brazilian-style ribs, and succulent lamb and pork loin on to plates at the feaster’s demand. This dining style is known as rodízio, and it doesn't just apply to churrasco meats; patrons can also opt for seafood options, such as Brazilian fish stew and sautéed shrimp, or engage a server in a duel with a carving fork. The all-you-can-eat meal is served at a fixed price at both lunch and dinner, and includes unlimited helpings from the salad bar and hot-food buffet. Each of Midwest Grill's locations also houses a TV-lined bar, where mixologists concoct cocktails and pop open bottles of Brazilian beer and wine.
“Who says northerners can’t do ‘cue?” asked Boston magazine as it crowned Blue Ribbon BBQ on its Best of Boston list in 2011. Whether dished out from its two brick-and-mortar locations or its trailer, the restaurant’s tender meats are lauded for their slow-cooked, pit-smoked tenderness, infused with the flavors of hickory and oak hardwoods. Blue Ribbon dishes out memphis dry-rubbed ribs, Texas-style beef brisket, and Kansas City–style burnt ends dubbed “absolutely addictive” by Boston. Locally made hot-smoked sausage and Mr. Whitner’s smoked-turkey-breast sandwiches help round out the menu alongside Southern sides such as dirty rice, potato salad, and corn bread. Blue Ribbon BBQ also caters special events and sells bottles of its most popular sauces so guests can enhance their grandmother’s recipes or add flavor to their super-soaker fights.