Note: Don't you hate it when you start something and then get too distracted to finish it? Unfortunately that non-awesome situation happened to me with this post. It's a tad delayed but still super delicious. Enjoy!
When I think "New York," I don't usually think of "finger-lickin' good" (with the exception of an experience at Hill Country). However, for one weekend every summer, Madison Square Park becomes charcoal grilling, hickory smoking and pork 'n beans central wend the Big Apple BBQ takes over. At $8 a plate, patrons can gorge themselves with the best BBQ from across the country. All proceeds benefited the Madison Square Park Conservancy.
It was a slightly cloudy day, but that didn't stop the masses from donning their bibs and nibbling their ribs from a selection of more than 15 pitmasters, each with their own unique styles. All sorts of BBQ specialties were represented, including St. Louis Style Ribs, Pulled Pork Shoulder and Smoked Sausage.
|Yup, that's a whole hog|
We kicked off the event with a visit to the pop-up beer garden within the boundaries of the park. Goose Island was the beer sponsor, and I was a happy camper with a glass of their refreshing IPA.
After completing a once-over of all of the food options up and down Madison Avenue, we decided to try two different types of ribs. Ultimately this was decided by the which booths had the shortest lines. The smart folks had paid for an event fastpass well in advance. They were able to have special access to visit each of the booths from behind and skip all the lines and hullabaloo I had to wade through. Definitely doing that next time.
We visited the booth of the famed Gramercy joint, Blue Smoke for their Texas Salt n' Pepper Beef Ribs. Having never experience this kind of rib before, I was pleasantly surprised by how moist they were. Not only did the meat fall right off the bone, but they were full of flavor. We also tried the Baby Back Ribs from Rack & Soul, also in NYC. The sauce on these babies was out of this world, and they came with a side of BBQ beans that left me in BBQ heaven. In the end, I think the consensus was that Blue Smoke's ribs were better.
|Rack & Soul's Baby Back Ribs and BBQ Beans|
|Blue Smoke's Texas Salt n' Pepper Beef Ribs|