Thursday, February 23, 2012

Red Zone BBQ


2056 North 117th Avenue (shopping center at northeast corner of 120th and Blondo)
Omaha, NE 68164
Sun-Thurs 11am-9pm, Fri and Sat 11am-10pm

"The Big Memphis ($7.49):
Pulled pork with Memphis slaw and real Memphis BBQ sauce,"
pork nacho warmer in the background

Most of what I know about Memphis-style barbecue is from dudes who have passed through the hot and sticky city in the mid-South and gorged themselves, time and time again, on real Memphis "Q." Driving along the other day, my gut involuntarily pointed to Red Zone, and I pulled helplessly into the parking lot. Fortunately I had a barbecue buff in tow to help me pick apart the place. 

"Now THAT'S a sandwich!" The lady behind the counter made no attempt to disguise her pride as she set the meat mountain right on the tray. Just like in Memphis, no need for plates out here in Northwest Omaha. The pile of pulled pork wasn't extremely tender, and the first bite was a hard chunk of fat. Be that as it may, the slaw was crunchy and a little creamy, and the sauce was spicy like it's 'sposed to be. The ultra-white bun was "Wonder"-ful. Though the Big Memphis sandwich was enough to satiate the two of us for snack time, a comparable item would be about half the price in the Barbecued Pork Capital of the World. Still, the buff said it was better than at Tops, the big chain in Memphis. 

The interior design couldn't be less "authentic Memphis," but numerous televisions and red painted walls should be good for Huskers devotees. Their logo was so prominent throughout, I wondered if this was a national chain that had somehow eluded me my entire life. It's not. I may return to Red Zone to sample some of their more interesting creations, like the Pork Nacho Boat and Rubbed Cheesy Balls, especially since they've recently added a few draft handles. Next time I think I'll try a Bud and a brisket. 

No comments:

Post a Comment