Still back in May, and going back to yet another trip to Ottawa, and yet another solo lunch, I decided to check out one of the new BBQ joints that have been descending on the nation's capital. I had read some mixed reviews, and decided to see for myself what Fatboys Southern Smokehouse had to offer.
Located down in the Bytown Market, Fatboys seemed like a family friendly biker bar. Yes, I know that sounds contradictory, but that's what I thought.
Inside is a big open space that has a mix of sports memorabilia, motorcycle memorabilia, and BBQ memorabilia. A fun addition was the taps in the washrooms were motorcycle handles on a barrel. Early lunch was not busy so I had my pick of inside (which was very exposed due to large garage-door windows being open, or the patio. The patio had no roof and the sun was getting hot so I was seated right at the border, which was perfect.
My waitress (didn't remember her name) was super helpful going over the menu, bringing me drink refills, and just being entertaining to talk to. I wanted wings, but I also wanted to try some of the BBQ dishes, so she recommended going with the meat choice (I went with 1/4 of their pulled pork for $7.99), adding Smoked Chicken Wings for $3.99, and added the Kansas City Cornbites for $3.49. This lunch added up very quickly.
For the wings, she suggested I get them dry and add what sauces I wanted later on. And they keep all the sauces on the table, so I could dab and dip.
The Cornbites were tasty, moist little bites with 4 coming in an order. The maple butter was sweet but went well on these yummy cornbread morsels, and I could have eaten a lot more.
Two sides that did come with the pork was a tart pickle which was crunchy and juicy. It also came with coleslaw that I did not really enjoy. No real flavour, not that saucy (kind of a thick vinegar based dressing) and I didn't really eat it.
The pulled pork was not bad. It was a little dried out, and did not have much of a smoked flavour. But once I started adding the sauces, it was great. I guess what I mean is that the sauces were good, and the pork was ok. In the above corner was the Sweet Memphis Mustard which was very tasty on the pork. It was sweet, it was mustard - there's not much more to say.
So cornbread was good, coleslaw not, pickle was good, pulled pork was ok. So how were the wings?
Wings normally come in an order of a pound, but I only added the wings as a side to my meat. So I'm not sure how many wings actually come in a pound. The wings are smoked, then dusted and then deep fried.
A flapper wing was large in length, but a little skinny on the meat side. The skin was nice and crispy due to the deep frying, but I would not have known these were smoked if I didn't know - there was no smoke flavour. At least the chicken was not tough as smoking can sometime produce.
This was a tasty BBQ sauce because it was a dark, sweet sauce with a bit of a kick. I mean it wasn't hot like a hot wing, but that's not really the point with BBQ. There were different levels of flavour and I really enjoyed this sauce.
This was their general bbq sauce. It was the Hillbilly Heat without the heat. I was happy to slap this on the pulled pork. On the wings it was good, but I might as well go with the hot version.
The Alabama White was a creamy almost ranch like bbq sauce.My waitress recommended it with the hillbilly hot and dang that was a tasty mix. With the crispy salty wings this made for a unique and tasty flavour. This became my go to for the wings.
FINAL SCORE: The wings were good. The BBQ was ok. The sauces were great and so was the service. There were lots of other things on the menu I'd love to try (Ribs, fried green tomatoes, deep fried pickles etc) before I went back for wings or pulled pork though. 5.5/10
Fatboys Southern Smokehouse
34 Murray Street, Ottawa ON