The best barbecue recipes are kept close to the heart, where they can hear the belly talk in its sleep about the ribs dreams are made of. Collect pilfered stomach secrets with today's deal: for $8, you get $16 worth of smoky barbecue at Bootleg Bar-B-Q. Choose between two locations: Bardstown Road in Fern Creek or Preston Highway in Okolona.
An inexhaustible source of slow-cooked, smoky ribs, the Bootleg Bar-B-Q pit masters have supplied area carnivores with excellent meat since 1991. Bootleg's co-owners work alongside their mutton-juggling employees to deliver well-slathered meatstuffs dressed in savory sauces to starving mouths of all sizes. When running their buds over the menu, tongues trill at the feel of robust half-slab dinners ($12.49) and pulled-pork and beef-brisket sandwiches ($4.99). A Courier-Journal review advises sandwich aficionados to order their first selection without sauce, then sample every Bootleg sauce until the ideal accompaniment reveals itself. Bootleg recommends customers send meat-seeking missives ahead of their arrival, as many sublimely smoked dishes take time to prepare, such as the wings, which require three hours' notice to exchange their aerodynamacy for hot and sticky flavor. A slew of enticing sides, available in individual, pint, or gallon sizes, fill remaining gut space with homespun fixings made from scratch, including country coleslaw, mac 'n' cheese, and down home tater salad.
Modest outdoor seating and a small indoor area are available at the Bardstown Road location, so many diners opt for carry-out, but poker-playing rounders frequent the Bardstown Road tables. The Preston Highway location offers a large indoor space with TVs showing your favorite Mann & Machine episodes. Bootleg's signature barbecue sauce can be taken home in jugs, then used privately to enhance waffles and cat food.
- When it comes to rustic ramshackle atmosphere, the original home of Bootleg Bar-B-Q seems to hold its own with any smoke-drenched meatery in the country. – Marty Rosen, Courier Journal
- the barbecue is artfully done, the mouth-watering result of hours of long, cool smoking. Smoked chicken was very good, glistening mahogany from the smoker, tender, sweet meat with just the right amount of hickory smoke flavor. – LouisvilleHotBytes