Ah, Heirloom Market. It’s what drew me to Meat Week last year, and I surely wasn’t going to miss it again in 2013! Saturday I attended what was my final day of participation in Meat Week’s Atlanta Chapter. And surely, it could not have been tastier!
Typically when I go to Heirloom (which I’d say is around once a month, since it’s so close to my apartment) I head straight for their sandwiches; they’re always delicious and they’re usually the lowest-cost way to get BBQ into my mouth. Saturday, though – not unlike when I was at Bone Lick – I was feelin’ ribs. A 1/4 rack of ribs and mac’n'cheese made its way onto my plate. And these ribs? Amazing! If I cheap-out on ribs I have to fight them to get to the meat, but these literally fell right off the bone. I always eat ribs with my fingers anyway (no standing on ceremony when it comes to Meat Week), but these I could simply pull the meat straight off of. Wonderful, wonderful.
Combined with Heirloom’s array of sauces – Hotlanta, Settler, and Korean, to name a few – these ribs were absolutely dynamite!
There’s a lot of great menu options at Heirloom, both in terms of main courses and sides; typically they always have several delicious specials, too. They were touting a Short-Rib Sandwich on Saturday which I hear was delicious, and their Spicy Korean BBQ sandwich, a special they have frequently, is one of my all-time favorites of theirs. When it comes to sides I always go for the mac and cheese – it’s creamy, delicious, and just a touch spicy – but this time around I had the opportunity to try some others. The tempura-style sweet potatoes were especially delicious; I’m not really sure how I’ve lived this long without eating them.
There were less people at Heirloom than there were at Bone Lick, so while delicious, it was a pretty mellow lunch. But it was a lovely sunny day (albeit a little chilly) and the meat-filled companionship was excellent.
I was sad to see Meat Week come to an end for me, but it was really fun seeing some of the same faces as last year and expanding my meat experimentation to an extra restaurant (one to which I’ll definitely be returning!). If you didn’t get an opportunity to try out Meat Week this year in your own respective location, definitely hook up with your local chapter now so you won’t miss it next time! It’s fun and ridiculous and, of course, delicious. Bring your friends, stuff your face, and have a good time.
MEAT BE WITH YOU!
Check out Heirloom Market’s Web Site! Did you know that Heirloom caters now?
This week is Meat Week here in the US, and yesterday marked the first day of my participation this year: the deliciously smokey and creative Bone Lick BBQ.
My friends and I were greeted with open arms by our friendly Meat Captain Tracy Galasso and her First Mate Jeff Thorton, who told us about the day’s specials, asked us to take lots of pictures, and generally got us pumped up for for an evening of revelry.
I’d already looked at the menu ahead of time, but after hearing that one of the night’s specials was “The International Special” – lamb ribs in a curry sauce – I knew there was really no other option for me that night. I’d been craving ribs all week, and fancying-up the party with lamb was like icing on the cake. Besides lamb ribs, other people in our party got the rack of pork ribs, a pulled pork sandwich, and, hilariously, “The Fat Ass Sampler”, a sampler of spare ribs, brisket, pulled pork, chicken and (my favorite) a sausage wrapped in bacon. Adam and Emily shared that meal together (and traded me a rib for a rib, of course); it was pretty epic.
Also, whenever the waiting staff brought out a Fat Ass Sampler they shouted “EVERYBODY!” to which we responded “FAT ASS!”. It was a classy joint.
But hey, I almost forgot to talk about the appetizers! In honor of Meat Week, ScoutMob had set up deal for Bone Lick giving meat-eaters a free appetizer of either boiled peanuts or truffle-bacon popcorn. I didn’t try the peanuts – boiled peanuts are not my “thing” – but wow, that popcorn was nuts. With a strip of perfectly-cooked bacon floating around your grease-soaked bag, the popcorn was addictive and a great way to whet the appetite.
The main courses themselves? Amazing. I didn’t run into anyone who disliked their choice of meal, and I was impressed both by the meat and the side-dishes. My lamb ribs were wonderful, falling off the bone and just a little spicy in their curry sauce. Erin, who decided on the pork ribs (which were also smokey and appropriately easy to eat from their bones), shared her side of tater tots with everyone; I don’t remember the last time I had ‘tots cooked so perfectly – hot, and crispy on the outside, perfect on the inside. And the jalapeño macaroni and cheese? Not super-spicy (unless you actually eat one of the jalapeños, of course), but creamy and delicious.
After gorging ourselves Emily and I played a few rounds of skee ball on their antique skee ball machine. The restaurant actually has its own retro-style arcade (Galaga, Mortal Kombat, etc), but the skee ball machine is wedged in the corner, smelling of dust and old metal parts – no coins required. It was awesome.
Suffice it to say, everybody had a great time, and the poor harried waiting staff handled our huge group pretty well. Oh, and they were gracious enough to give each of us a $5 gift certificate! Hands-down, I’ll be back for another round of delicious, smokey barbecue.
It’s another week of the Holiday Recipe Exchange from My Baking Addiction and Good Life Eats. Next week’s exchange theme is Crock Pot recipes sponsored by West Bend, and while this post is a little early I figured it’d be okay…any crock pot food is good crock pot food, right?
Back in the day my mother used to make amazing boneless crock pot BBQ ribs. In her fabulous 70s-style burnt orange crock pot she made delicious ribs with nothing but meat, store-bought BBQ sauce, and onions. It was a joy to behold. I’ve been hankering for those ribs for years…and this week was their time! I invited some friends over and started with the cooking.
Unlike my mother’s BBQ, I opted not to cook the ribs with the sauce, but rather to drizzle it over top after cooking the ribs all by their lonesome (I believe this is called “Carolina style”?). This may have been a stylistic choice, or it may have been because I fell asleep on my couch instead of making the sauce the night before. But who’s counting?
In order to make this a little more interesting than “put ribs in crock pot, pour store-bought BBQ sauce over top” I went for the new challenge of making my own sauce. I’ve never done this before, so I did a little bit of research to figure out what they’re typically composed of and what other sauces use as ingredients. In the end I decided to go for something sweet and a little smokey, and too my delight it turned out wonderfully!
Basically, BBQ sauce is composed of a typically-tomato base, and then a mixture of acids and spices. Because I was going sweet for this recipe I decided to use a cider vinegar for my acidity and then mix in brown sugar as well. The flavors blended nicely. I also actually added a dried chipotle pepper into the mix hoping that it’d add a nice subtle smokey flavor to the whole thing, but if it added any flavor it was pretty well overwhelmed by everything else. Perhaps for a future experiment.
The pork itself I didn’t neglect either. Before dumping them into the crock pot for a nice slow cookin’, they all got rubbed/sprinkled with salt, black pepper, Hungarian paprika, and a drizzle of olive oil. The meat by itself was delicious. I’ve found it’s almost impossible to find ribs without bones these days so we (my party and I) had to do a little picking as we ate, but in my opinion it was worth it. Hopefully in theirs as well.
Oh, and for any health-conscious people out there reading this, fear not! We ate roasted green beans with our meal which were equally delicious (in fact, I wish I’d made more!). If you like vegetarian recipes I highly recommend the Moosewood Cookbook, a book full of vegetarian meals, sides, dips, and sauces. The recipe I used had me lightly covering the beans in balsamic vinegar before serving…and wow that was a super combination I’d never have thought up on my own. Here here!
Anyway, if you like a sweet, slightly tangy BBQ sauce, I recommend this stuff. I only drizzled it over top of the meat, but I bet it’d taste great cooked with the meat as well. Have at it!
Thanks to Emily for taking the BBQ photos!
Makes ~ 2 1/2 cups of sauce.
1. Mix all ingredients into a saucepan.
2. Heat on medium-low heat for 30-45 minutes. Make sure the brown sugar melts. Be careful of bubbling/splashing!
3. CONSUME (preferably with meat)!