Since 1941, the Dickey family has been churning out Texas-style barbecue and tasty family-style sandwiches, sides, salads, and baked taters. Dickey’s lets customers choose from eight USDA-prime meats—all cooked slowly to smoky perfection over a hot hickory-fire pit every night—including Southern pulled pork, tender turkey breast, and Virginia-style ham. Start by slamming a quick cow workout with some sliced beef brisket on The Big Barbecue Sandwich ($4.75), served with pickles, onions, and Dickey's famous sweet-and-spicy barbecue sauce, which took three years, two fist-fights, and one small kitchen fire to develop. Otherwise, go with The Quarter Plate ($7), a quarter-pound of your favorite meat served with pickles, onions, a roll, corn on the cob and one other homestyle side (which are $1.95 each when purchased separately). Choose from options such as fried okra, green beans with bacon, or mac & cheese. Diners with more than one mouth to feed can play hot potato with a giant stuffed baker ($3.50) before stuffing their head's two other mouths with the picnic pack ($19), which includes a pound of meat, two pint-sized sides, four rolls, and barbecue sauce.
In 1946, John Kinder opened his first meat market in the Bay Area town of San Pablo. More than 65 years later, Kinder continues to oversee daily operations at more than 15 neighborhood locations. He owes his continued success, in part, to the second- and third-generation family members who have leant their own tireless dedication to the company.
This dedication has certainly paid off. The Kinder family’s barbecue sauces, marinades, and rubs consistently take first-place ribbons from judges across the country and have earned the market a loyal following of cowboys and outlaws alike. In a 2008 article on what to order at Major League ballparks, the New York Times hailed the ball-tip steak sandwich and its "mess of Kinder's smoky-sweet sauce" as a much-welcome relief from the fried menu items at McAfee Coliseum. :m]]
Beef, fish, chicken bones, and more than 30 Chinese herbs collectively flavor the numerous variations of Xinjiang Mala spicy broth at Dragon Gate BBQ. These slow-cooked broths coat spicy shabu skewers, on which chefs layer kelp, tofu curd, and beef meatballs. Simmering meats also cling to the kitchen staff’s barbecue skewers, which include traditional ingredients, such as green beans, chicken gizzard, and pig skin. Batches of fried rice or noodles tossed with veggies round out the menu along with freshly squeezed juices or imported beer.
Ono Hawaiian BBQ brings the island to the mainland with tender meats soaked in made-from-scratch marinades. Chefs hand roll chicken katsu in panko bread crumbs to give it a fresh, crispy texture, and assemble generous portions of crispy shrimp, island whitefish, and barbecue chicken in the seafood mix.
Hand-rubbed with a signature seasoning, char-roasted over an open flame, and then smoked in the oven until the center reaches the perfect shade of pink. Buckhorn Grill’s certified-Angus tri-tip is not just the franchise’s signature item—it’s the reason behind its initial creation. After selling thousands of these tri-tip sandwiches at the Napa Chef’s Market, the founders knew they had something great, leading them to open the very first Buckhorn Grill in Metreon. That was in 1999; today, Buckhorn has expanded to nearly a dozen locations across California and New York.
At each location, chefs pile their perfectly charred and tender tri-tip atop half a dozen sandwiches, such as the Bacon-Cheddar Buck or the Roadhouse Buck topped with red ranch and blue cheese. They also use that same certified-Angus in their burgers, topping the 1/3-pound patties with everything from apple-wood smoked bacon and avocado to simple lettuce, tomato, and onions. Beyond beef, the eatery smokes its own sausage, slow roasts barbecued chicken, and even marinates and grills portabellas for vegetarians and finicky pet rabbits.
The chefs at Shalimar Restaurant Sunnyvale fire their tandoor clay ovens with charcoal to barbecue seasoned skewers of meat and bake soft portions of naan. As they cook, aromas of curry spices mingle with cinnamon sticks and cloves, drifting into the dining room. There, diners dig into a menu of traditional Indian and Pakistani dishes incorporating goat, chicken, beef, and lamb, as well as vegetables including spinach, eggplant, and lentils. Customers wash down delicacies with mugs of masala tea or mango lassis made with creamy yogurt before continuing passionate debates over whether Funkytown has its own zip code.