Instead of an appetizing carving board, the first thing that greets you inside J B Smokehouse is a steam table full of meats and vegetables with a fogged up sneeze guard dripping with condensation. The sauce covering a few remaining ribs bubbled in a hot pan, and the bottom of the brisket had crisped under the incessant heat.
It had been a long day of eating and we had just stuffed ourselves at Wild Blue BBQ on the outskirts of town. I knew before we opened the box on the trunk of the car that this was going to be tough to enjoy. The brisket was thoroughly dried out from its prolonged stay on the warming tray. The meat just crumbled apart as I tried to pick it up. Ribs stayed together better as I took a hefty bite from the center. The edges were chewy and the interior stewed beyond tender. The fat had an off flavor from the extended holding period. I contemplated all of this as I continued chewing. Mastication fatigue was setting in and the trigger that controls my swallowing just wouldn't kick in. I realized that I wasn't going to be able to swallow it. Friends joke that I must have something like a wine spitoon in order to eat at so many places. It wasn't quite a spitoon, but I had to spit out that big bite of rib into the gravel parking lot. There was no need to swallow and less reason to return.