Saturday, February 13, 2010

Cattlemen's Gold

BBQ background (Val): We first tried Cattlemen's Gold at a local BBQ joint in Lincoln called Parker's Rib Ranch a few years ago. (Now called Parker's Smokehouse.) They have a variety of sauces there, and most of them are pretty "normal" bbq sauces--what you would expect from a typical BBQ joint. This sauce, however is a different take on BBQ.

Cattlemen's Gold is a tangy mustard-based sauce. This is good news for Dave, since mustard is his thing, his Kobe, but for those of us non-mustard lovers, it leaves quite a bit to be desired in BBQ heaven. This is the first sauce that Dave and I don't see eye to eye on.

This is a staple for Dave that we usually keep on hand, but not one that I indulge in.

Val's Take
Cattlemen's Gold is far from my favorite sauce. The overwhelming mustard flavor prevents me from noticing any true BBQ aspects this sauce. I typically like my BBQ sauces to have a tomato base with some sweetness, some heat and a good texture. This one, to me, just tastes like mustard. If you like mustard, you'll probably love this sauce. Hate it, and this sauce is not for you.

Rating: 2/10

Dave's Take
Blasphemy! This is a phenomenal sauce and everybody should give it a shot. Very sweet and delicious. Goes with every kind of BBQ I can think of. Only thing holding it back from a "10" is that it's hard to get a hold of (oftentimes sold out) and could stand a little more heat for my tastes. That said, just add some of your favorite hot ground pepper and it takes it to the next level.

Rating: 9/10

Although we buy this sauce from Parker's Smokehouse, the sauce is not homemade there. They order the sauce in but allow customers to purchase bottles at the restaurant. If you're not from Lincoln and want to give the sauce a try, the only place I could locate it online is here.

Cost: $3.69

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Sunday, August 16, 2009

Buffalo Wild Wings Honey BBQ

BBQ Background (Val):
Honey BBQ from Buffalo Wild Wings has become another one of my favorite sauces. This sauce was first introduced just as a temporary summer promotion in 2005, I believe. I honestly wasn't that wild (excuse the pun) for BW3's (and why is it nicknamed BW3's anyway? There are only 2 W's. Anyone know?) before this sauce was introduced. I had gone there a few times with Dave because he really dug the chicken strips they have.

I was always left a little dissatisfied. The spicy sauces tasted too much like vinegar, and the only sweet one "Sweet Barbeque" was lacking flavor. It also had a funny texture to me--a little more like tomato sauce than BBQ sauce. The few times we ate there, I actually resorted to dipping the chicken strips in ketchup.

Then, lucky for me, Honey BBQ was introduced. Honey BBQ has a perfect blend of sweet and spicy, and a nice smooth texture. Finally, BW3's had a great compliment to their strips. Our frequency at BW3's increased dramatically that summer, mainly due to this new Honey BBQ. Since it was temporary, they didn't sell bottles of the sauce, so the only way to get it was to eat there.

Sadly, after the summer, they discontinued the sauce. They had an online poll where you could vote to bring back Honey BBQ, so I did my part and voted frequently! Several months later, Honey BBQ was introduced as a real sauce! You could get it again in the restaurant and also purchase bottles to take home.

Now, Honey BBQ has become one of our BBQ staples at home!

Dave's Take:
A delicous sauce. This is straight forward barbeque sauce perfected. It goes well with most foods, and it's a safe bet for larger gatherings where tastes are likely to vary. Highly recommended to have around at all times.

If you're looking for something with more zip, there are many options I prefer more. (On a personal level, I tend to prefer something with a bit more zing, and I don't mind sauce with a strong vinegar taste.) But if you're not always in the mood for something that'll burn your mouth, this is one of your best bets.


Val's Take:
Honey BBQ is a sweet, versatile sauce that can be used on anything. I use it for chicken strips and often on homemade BBQ pork, beef or chicken sandwiches. At the time of its release, this was the best sauce I'd ever tasted. It's currently tied in my book for the top spot with another sauce I will post later. It's hard to give something a 10, because that means there's nothing better out there, but Honey BBQ is about as close as it gets for me to perfect.

Rating: 9.9/10

Any Buffalo Wild Wings. There's probably one near you! Search here for locations. BW3's have some pretty fun trivia games, so I would recommend the atmosphere as a compliment to good food. Take a bottle of sauce home, too! If you don't live near a BW3's, you can also order bottles of sauce from their online store.

Cost: $4.25 a bottle


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Saturday, January 17, 2009

Barbecue Sauce Review - Buster's BBQ & Brew

BBQ Background (Val):
The first 21 years of my life, I would not eat BBQ. Growing up, I didn't like the taste of any BBQ sauce. When forced to eat BBQ, I would request mine dry. I also wasn't a big fan of pork, in general, and would usually opt for chicken or beef when given a choice of a meat dish.

I have always experienced strong food cravings, and my desire for BBQ fittingly came from one of these cravings. For some unexplained reason, I woke up one day my junior year of college (2004) and had a strong desire for a BBQ pork sandwich. Being that I didn't overly care for pork, and pretty much despised BBQ sauce, this was quite strange. But I gave in to my craving, and haven't been able to stop eating BBQ since!

I wasn't really even aware of any BBQ restaurants in Lincoln, NE, but was determined to find myself a delicious pulled pork sandwich. The only place I could think of was a BBQ restaurant/pizza joint where I had played a small Christmas gig (you can listen to some of our Chrsitmas songs here) the year before. I called up my best friend (now husband!) Dave and suggested a meal of BBQ pulled pork at Buster's.

This was our first experience of a growing love for everything BBQ. We thought the food was great, and Buster's has since become a long-time favorite. Since this was really my first experience with BBQ sauce, I felt it fitting for this to be our first review!

Increasingly, through the last few years, Dave and I have enjoyed trying new BBQ restaurants and sauces from across the nation. We are constantly seeking new sauces, recipes and restaurants to try, so if you have any suggestions don't be shy! We hope you enjoy our BBQ blog and our quest to find the best BBQ!

Dave's Take:
Perfect compliment to the Busters sandwich. For over four years I considered it the best barbecue sauce on the planet.

Rating: 9.5/10.0

Val's Take:
As Dave said, this sauce goes perfectly with Buster's meat (especially the pulled pork). The flavor is sweet, smoky and mild. We generally use this sauce as a basis for comparison for new sauces we try. "Is it better than Buster's?" Not many accomplish that feat!

Buster's is very affordable restaurant for BBQ. You can get a meal for 2 for about $14.00, including a side. (Baked fries are great.) It's not fancy--a local joint in an old Pizza Hut building-- but the atmosphere is just right for BBQ place. They're also open really late (like 3 a.m. or something) so you can quelch your BBQ cravings pretty much anytime. If you want, you can take a bottle of sauce home in a standard ketchup-type bottle (seen above), but it's going to cost you! :)

Rating 9.0/10.0

Buster's BBQ and Brew
2435 S 48th Street
Lincoln, NE

$5.99 a bottle


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