Novi >Red Hot & Blue Bbq
Memphis-style barbecue with a blues soundtrack sweeps the nation..
Founded in Tennessee, this barbecue chain is the blues version of a big-city Hard Rock Cafe. Walls are lined with posters and memorabilia of musicians like Bessie Smith and Stevie Ray Vaughan. Ribs are the specialty of the house and come dry, wet or sweet. Pulled pork and fried catfish are complemented by the deep-fried onion ring loaf.
Great 'Blues' Food. Fun place, great music. If BBQ is a favorite, you'll like Red Hot & Blue! My wife and I had the combo rib platter, dry rubbed, hot, and sweet all on one platter. It's all good. The pulled pork sandwich is always excellent. Located a little south of Grand River Ave., on Novi rd. It's nice because it's not with all the other restaurants, so it seems secretive to those who know where it is. I have had short waits to eat, and they have a nice bar. It's the kind of place that gets loud and fun. The sodas comes in small pitchers, about 40 oz. so you'll never be bothered by having to get constant refills. Lots of choices of southern sides to add to your entree. You won't leave hungry. Good place to unwind, with fun atmosphere and music. $$
Some great barbeque here...for a chain. Spotty customer service (sometimes great/sometimes not).
RIBS: Ribs here come as Wet, Dry, or Sweet. Wet ribs are just plain ribs that are sauced before being brought to your table. They are usually ok although the last time I went the fat was not rendered all the way off and they were less than ok. Dry ribs are wonderful, super-smoky ribs, caked in enough nasty dry rub to choke a horse. The sweet ribs are my favorite. The sweet sauce is cooked into them, caramelizing the sugars and giving some hellacious burnt ends that never have failed to please me in a half-dozen visits.
BRISKET: Brisket has a nice smoky flavor and is lightly seasoned. It has an excellent, homemade mouthfeel and b1te to it, and generally should please.
PORK: Pulled pork is smoky, sauced by the kitchen (grrrrr!) and made up of well-cleaned chunks.
Red Hot and Blue also serves a nice, smoky, pulled chicken which is meticulously cleaned. If we were into this sort of thing, wed like it.
Sauces are 4. Sufferin Sweet is thick, not THAT sweet, and a bit nondescript. Its much better baked onto the ribs than actually placed on food, cold. Mojo Mild is a nice sauce that defies easy description. Would it help to say its tomato-based? Red? Thickish? H00chie Coochie is a hot, hot, hot vinegary sauce that would make any North Carolina mountain man happy. Carolina Style Voodoo Child is merely hot and vinegary like NC sauce should be.
You can get any one of 14 sides here. Beans were canned-tasting jobbies with some chopped meat on top (a nice touch, but it couldnt fool us into actually eating them). Fries are quite good. Miss the bland seasoned rice.
If you must eat at a chain, you can do pretty well here. I give this place a B+ (although the sweet ribs are a solid A-). (We tend to index our grades to A+ joints like The Salt Lick outside of Austin Texas).
Review by: THE MICHIGAN BARBEQUE SOCIETY
Definately Try It!. I'm writing this after my second visit. On the first I was disappointed with the ribs, but the catfish was excellent (a rare thing in the north) and the service was friendly, prompt and attentative. The atmosphere was wonderful and the background music inspiring. On the second visit I tried the ribs again and was still disappointed, BUT the sausage link was OUTSTANDING (we ordered it as an appetizer then added it to our main dish). The server happened to be Suzi - the same one from my first visit and she remembered me - something rare even in places I frequent. Overall this is my favorite resturant in Novi and I highly reccomend it
Great barbi - skip the drinks.
Terrific barbeque - what they neglect to tell you is that you can split one order into all 3 types of barbeque --wet, dry,& sweet. If you order a 1/4 rack - you can still try all 3 kinds.
The sides are almost better than the ribs. Some of the best fries I ever tasted. The baked yams are really yunny with lots of brown sugar and butter.
The catfish is OK - but not my favorite. The special drinks are full of flavor - but little alcohol.
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