After writing my thoughts on the Commissary near Memphis, TN, I started reminiscing about my BBQ travels, and it brought me back to one of my first “real BBQ” experiences. This might sound crazy, but for a couple of years for our work my husband, myself and our two dogs traveled the country in a 38ft Class A RV.
To backtrack, my husband and I own a business together and through that business we have done a lot of traveling across the US. We don’t have children, but we have a dog who is like our child, and at the time we were traveling we had two dogs. We hated leaving them behind, so we decided to buy an RV, deck it out with our company logo and hit the road for weeks, and sometimes a month, at a time for work. I grew up in the most suburban home you could imagine. My mother’s idea of “roughing it” was when our A/C broke and we had to stay at a local hotel until it was fixed. So, you can imagine traveling in an RV was never something I thought would happen in my life, but it turned out to be one of the best experiences I have ever had (one day I will share the thrills of sleeping in a Wal-Mart parking lot, it’s way more fun than you would think). Part of that experience was getting to try food from all over the country, which brings me to the main purpose of this post which is my review of Pappy’s Smokehouse in St. Louis, MO.
When our travels brought us to St. Louis, we started asking around for the best local places to try. Of course everyone said you need to try toasted ravioli, St. Louis style pizza with Provel, and gooey butter cake. People gave us all kinds of suggestions on where to get those St. Louis staples, but one unexpected place that kept coming up over and over again was Pappy’s Smokehouse.
We tried all the staples, and they were all delicious, except the Provel cheese, I just can’t get down with that texture, sorry St. Louis, but the star of the trip was hands down Pappy’s. I realize now, after going back and checking out their website that it’s Memphis style BBQ, and I am starting to notice a trend in my taste buds.
Everyone told us we needed to get there 30 minutes before they open, and even then we would still have to wait in line. We thought they were crazy, but did as we were told, and sure enough we got there 30 minutes early and there was already a line. We had been studying the menu online because we wanted to be ready to order when it was our turn. As much as I wanted ribs, my stomach kept telling me to get pulled pork, so I got a pulled pork sandwich with fried corn (we were told this was a must to order) and baked beans.
After my first bite I understood the hype. To this day, this was the best pulled pork sandwich I have ever had. It had the perfect amount of smoke, it was juicy, flavorful and spiced just right. The BBQ sauce was on point, and the beans were delicious, but it was the fried corn that stole the show here. I was not very optimistic about fried corn, but if the masses say try it, I will try it, and WOW am I glad I did. That was the juiciest, best piece of corn I have ever had. No joke, the best. You think you know good corn, but until you have had fried corn, you have no idea how good corn can be.
The restaurant itself is not very big, which makes sense why you want to get there early, because it fills up fast. You walk up to the counter and place your order, so know what you want before you get there. The staff was super friendly, and the whole atmosphere just screams BBQ. The smell will whisk you away to a place of happiness as soon as you arrive and after your first bite you will be taken to BBQ nirvana. If my travels ever take me back to St. Louis, Pappy’s will be the first place I stop, and next time I am definitely trying the ribs.
If you are ever in the St. Louis area, you have to stop in at Pappy’s for some Memphis style BBQ, and please do yourself a favor and get the fried corn. Don’t question it, just order it. Oh, and don’t forget to get there early!
Have you had BBQ in St. Louis? What’s your favorite spot and favorite dish or side dish?