Jump to content

The BBQ Joint in Easton, MD


Recommended Posts

Andrew Evans was the former Australian chef/owner of the Inn at Easton which enjoyed its own thread here on dr.com back in 2006/7 and which was the site of some evidently excellent cuisine.

Picking up the story from then, it seems Chef Evans sold the Inn and then opened a Thai place called Thai Ki. But, while Thai Ki received very positive reviews, it wasn't long for Easton and thus entered "the BBQ Joint" into Easton's food scene. Those who knew the Inn at Easton will know that it was sold due to a divorce and Chef Evans raised (is raising?) two children. So, a fine dining chef transitioning to a literal and figurative "BBQ Joint" very centered on slow and long smoking probably signifies two things. First, more time for the Chef to spend with family necessarily. And, second, some damn fine BBQ. And so it is.

HEADLINE

Surprisingly good BBQ that would be at the top of the charts for the category were it in DC. All proteins are slowly smoked for hours in two large black smokers in the middle of the kitchen. Reasonably priced. Go here if in Easton.

SERVICE/VENUE

Can takeout, sit at a bar overlooking the kitchen and prep areas (and smokers!) or sit at one of maybe 7 or 8 tables. Also outdoor tables but with temps over 100 this weekend, noone was doing that. Red and white checked tablecloths. 6 or 7 bottle of different temp and type sauces on each table. Lots of sawdust on the floor. Andrew wasn't there (evidently he was off competing in a BBQ competition--have to respect that) but his "right hand" and a couple of other cooks were and were very friendly and hospitable to us. They even opened and interpreted the smoker when I asked. Table service was very friendly. We were well taken care of.

FOOD

A wonderful lunch for four that included:

- Onion Rings ($4.75): ordered by a friend who proclaimed these one of the (or maybe just "the") best she'd ever had. I tried a couple and can confirm they were very good with nice flavor in the breading, fresh flavorful onions and not too much salt. Served with ranch dressing.

- Half Dozen Chicken Wings ($5.95): Wow! As with all other proteins, these had been smoked for hours. Plump wings that had been drizzled with a bit of butter, seasoned and cooked. One of the better wings I've had in a long time. Would strongly recommend.

- Chicken Ranch Salad ($8.95): Also ordered by a friend and I didn't try this. She loved it. It looked great. Maybe fair to call it a much better version of the Puck "chinois chicken salad" ubiquitous in many airports.

- Pork Sandwich Platter ($8): Platters cost a few dollars extra and include two sides. Another friend ordered this and was disappointed with it. He said (and it looked) dry. But the slaw side was a hit.

- St Louis Full Rack of Ribs Platter ($26.45): Best rack of ribs I've had in at least a year and better than the best I've had in DC (Rocklands). Just outstanding. Like every other protein, they'd been smoked for 10-12 hours and the smoke permeated every bit of the meaty thick ribs. The sauce was wonderfully tangy and sweet (can order them "wet" like this or with a dry rub). Everyone tried them and agreed they were great. The mac & cheese we ordered with this was ordinary. The collard greens, however, were perfectly vinegary with wonderful flavor and freshness.

- Pan-Fried Cookie ($5.95): A rich, iron skillet cooked chocolate chip cookie with vanilla ice cream and chocolate syrup. Rich and decadent. Too much so for me but, given this is a bbq joint and not a 4-star restaurant, it seemed totally appropriate and much appreciated by our friends, who finished it.

- Special Cherry Pie ($4.95): I ordered this after being told by our waitress that is was prepped for the bbq joint by a "pastry chef." Not sure about that but it was okay at best. The pastry was fairly white/light and seemed a bit underbaked. The filling was an odd combination of gelatinous cherry filling and nice fresh cherries.

BOTTOM LINE

Good value. We loved the BBQ joint and will absolutely go back for future lunches in Easton. Hopefully next time we'll get to meet Chef Evans, who sounds like a fantastic guy with a great story and demonstrably high passion and skill for all kinds of cuisines. FWIW, I think it a bit criminal that we can't get ribs and wings like this in DC.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Andrew Evans is a wonderfully talented chef who is missed by my wife and I. I believe he actually went to UVA, met his Australian wife while cooking there (forgot why he moved to Australia) and they ended up settling in Easton (forgot why he moved back here). But I have a number of wonderful memories of his excellent inn. A half dozen times we drove the 200 miles roundtrip from Reston and it was worth every foot of every mile. Thank you, chef.

Link to comment
Share on other sites


Andrew Evans was the former Australian chef/owner of the Inn at Easton which enjoyed its own thread here on dr.com back in 2006/7 and which was the site of some evidently excellent cuisine.

Picking up the story from then, it seems Chef Evans sold the Inn and then opened a Thai place called Thai Ki. But, while Thai Ki received very positive reviews, it wasn't long for Easton and thus entered "the BBQ Joint" into Easton's food scene. Those who knew the Inn at Easton will know that it was sold due to a divorce and Chef Evans raised (is raising?) two children. So, a fine dining chef transitioning to a literal and figurative "BBQ Joint" very centered on slow and long smoking probably signifies two things. First, more time for the Chef to spend with family necessarily. And, second, some damn fine BBQ. And so it is.

HEADLINE

Surprisingly good BBQ that would be at the top of the charts for the category were it in DC. All proteins are slowly smoked for hours in two large black smokers in the middle of the kitchen. Reasonably priced. Go here if in Easton.

SERVICE/VENUE

Can takeout, sit at a bar overlooking the kitchen and prep areas (and smokers!) or sit at one of maybe 7 or 8 tables. Also outdoor tables but with temps over 100 this weekend, noone was doing that. Red and white checked tablecloths. 6 or 7 bottle of different temp and type sauces on each table. Lots of sawdust on the floor. Andrew wasn't there (evidently he was off competing in a BBQ competition--have to respect that) but his "right hand" and a couple of other cooks were and were very friendly and hospitable to us. They even opened and interpreted the smoker when I asked. Table service was very friendly. We were well taken care of.

FOOD

A wonderful lunch for four that included:

- Onion Rings ($4.75): ordered by a friend who proclaimed these one of the (or maybe just "the") best she'd ever had. I tried a couple and can confirm they were very good with nice flavor in the breading, fresh flavorful onions and not too much salt. Served with ranch dressing.

- Half Dozen Chicken Wings ($5.95): Wow! As with all other proteins, these had been smoked for hours. Plump wings that had been drizzled with a bit of butter, seasoned and cooked. One of the better wings I've had in a long time. Would strongly recommend.

- Chicken Ranch Salad ($8.95): Also ordered by a friend and I didn't try this. She loved it. It looked great. Maybe fair to call it a much better version of the Puck "chinois chicken salad" ubiquitous in many airports.

- Pork Sandwich Platter ($8): Platters cost a few dollars extra and include two sides. Another friend ordered this and was disappointed with it. He said (and it looked) dry. But the slaw side was a hit.

- St Louis Full Rack of Ribs Platter ($26.45): Best rack of ribs I've had in at least a year and better than the best I've had in DC (Rocklands). Just outstanding. Like every other protein, they'd been smoked for 10-12 hours and the smoke permeated every bit of the meaty thick ribs. The sauce was wonderfully tangy and sweet (can order them "wet" like this or with a dry rub). Everyone tried them and agreed they were great. The mac & cheese we ordered with this was ordinary. The collard greens, however, were perfectly vinegary with wonderful flavor and freshness.

- Pan-Fried Cookie ($5.95): A rich, iron skillet cooked chocolate chip cookie with vanilla ice cream and chocolate syrup. Rich and decadent. Too much so for me but, given this is a bbq joint and not a 4-star restaurant, it seemed totally appropriate and much appreciated by our friends, who finished it.

- Special Cherry Pie ($4.95): I ordered this after being told by our waitress that is was prepped for the bbq joint by a "pastry chef." Not sure about that but it was okay at best. The pastry was fairly white/light and seemed a bit underbaked. The filling was an odd combination of gelatinous cherry filling and nice fresh cherries.

BOTTOM LINE

Good value. We loved the BBQ joint and will absolutely go back for future lunches in Easton. Hopefully next time we'll get to meet Chef Evans, who sounds like a fantastic guy with a great story and demonstrably high passion and skill for all kinds of cuisines. FWIW, I think it a bit criminal that we can't get ribs and wings like this in DC.

donrockwell.com at its best. Thanks.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Andrew cooked our rehearsal dinner for our wedding years ago at The Inn at Easton. We also stayed there our wedding night. BBQ was always his hobby and I'm glad he has pursued it. He is a great guy and I hope he continues his success. While we miss our Inn at Easton meals, I am thrilled to enjoy his skills on one of my favorite foods - BBQ. Andrew actually had a great Thai restaurant for a brief period before changing the space to the more Easton friendly genre of BBQ. I am headed over there tonight to enjoy some St. Louis ribs wet and chopped brisket. If you are anywhere near Easton, do yourself a favor and take a visit.

FYI - he also has a BBQ truck at the Queenstown outlets open Thur - Mon.

Edit - just an update from dinner last night:

The St Louis ribs were outstanding as usual. Had the "redneck nachos" (chose smoked chicken topping) which were a nice change of pace with a jalapeño cream sauce on top of good, fresh, thick, crunchy chips. Chopped beef brisket was nice and moist while my wife (who tends to like salads over meats) very much enjoyed her Beef & Blues Brisket salad with crisp iceberg and tangy blue cheese. We also added the chicken wings with competition rub, Plump wings with a really nice subtle smoked flavor.

The kids were satisfied with mac n' cheese, cornbread and baked beans.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Last week, I was driving back to DC from the Eastern Shore and thanks to this wonderful website, I knew about the BBQ Joint as a place to stop for lunch. It is a good 3-5 minutes off Rt 50, so I would never have known about it otherwise. I went with a few friends and we tried the sliced brisket sandwich, ribs, and picked chicken sandwich. All were rather good. On the advice of the locals at the next table over, I ordered the brisket - half lean and half fatty. The lean was ok, but didn't have too much flavor, whereas the fatty was spot on delicious. Since there is no distinction on the menu, I'm not sure what I would have gotten if I hadn't asked specifically. I tried all of the 5 different BBQ sauces - mild, medium, hot, spicy, and sweet. All were kind of thin and not too great - I liked the medium best and adding some to the brisket helped it shine even more. I also tried a bite of the picked chicken (pre-cubed smoked chicken with one of the sauces (unclear which one) and it was very good too. I didn't try the ribs, but my friend said they were very good. We also tried a bunch of sides, but they were mostly unexciting and nothing special (fries, coleslaw, cornbread, mac and cheese). The service was slow and a bit confused, but apparently it was the young person's 2nd day. Overall very good BBQ meat, sides not so much - I'd say worth a visit if you are out there, but not worth a special trip on its own.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Ate here twice this past weekend.

Enjoyed the pulled pork sandwich. It is not served up Carolina style, so if you like slaw you need to ask for it and they don't have Carolina vinegar based sauce, so I mixed together the sweet and spicy sauces with a dash or two of hot sauce. Lots of chunks of pulled pork. Day two when I ate lunch the meat was more moist (Day 1 I went around 6pm and it was a little dried out, probably been sitting around). At $6 for a "small" sandwich, it was a good value.

The quater slab of ribs were 3 small ribs...perhaps a little meager on the meat, but super tender and flavorful. You can get them served up dry or wet.

I like the potato salad, the mac and cheese was a little ordinary but perked up after a splash of BBQ sauce was added.

If you are driving past Easton it is an easy 2-3 minute side trip down Dover Street (one of the two main Easton exits of Rt. 50) and sure beats the Olive Garden, Appleby's, Chipotle trifecta on the outskirts of town.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I"m sure many already saw this but I wanted to memorialize it here rather than on the media board. I'm no journalist and, appropriate, am rarely if ever ahead on any "story" but as this just came out yesterday in the post and I started this thread just over a year ago, I'm feeling a bit vindicated...or something...in recommending Andrew and his BBQ Joint.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now
 Share

×
×
  • Create New...