ATLANTA: Fox Bros. Bar-B-Q
1238 Dekalb Avenue Northeast
Atlanta, GA 30307
Open Sun-Thur 11-10, F-Sat 11-11
This was a visit of pure happenstance. I was traveling south of Atlanta for work and accidentally went north from the airport into the city. My wife said it was my BBQ radar taking control of my subconscious, but no matter how I got there, I found myself just minutes from this joint that has received heavy praise from multiple sources including Dustin at The Georgia Barbecue Hunt. He surely knows more about where it falls in the spectrum of smoked meat in Georgia, but I know what I like and Fox Bros. delivered.
The owners are from Texas and claim they do Texas style BBQ here. Unfortunately they were out of sliced beef at dinner, so I had to settle for the chopped beef, baby back ribs and house specialty hot wings. The wings are smoked, fried and sauced in a homemade sweet and spicy concoction. They were very similar to the best wings I've ever eaten at Green Mesquite in Austin. Respectable chopped beef is easier to pull of than the sliced, and this was a good example. Plenty of crusty bits and rendered fat were mixed in with the hickory smoked beef made for a very Texas style flavor. A sweet rub on the ribs was a bit of a departure from traditional Texas barbecue, but I'm guessing you can only go so far in Georgia. Nevertheless, these ribs were perfectly smoked with exemplary tenderness and they were plenty moist.
Another house specialty is the fried ribs. After suffering through so many poor versions at the State Fair of Texas, I have a new respect for how good these were. While the menu item is most likely a way to use up yesterday's ribs, the chicken fried batter was crispy and well seasoned and the ribs beneath remained tender. Even after a hot oil bath the smokiness still shined through.
I'm certainly curious to see how the sliced beef stacks up to the best in Texas, but from what I saw in my first trip I'm more than happy to return.