Thu 20 Oct 2005
SLOWâ€™S BAR B Q
2138 Michigan Ave.
Detroit, MI. 48216
Last week I had to be in the Detroit area on a business trip. I knew that I wanted to sample some of Motownâ€™s barbecue so I prepared in advance by asking the BBQ Forum members for recommendations. One reply came back with a new barbecue spot opening up in downtown Detroit named Slowâ€™s Bar B Q. Now this place is so new that they are not listed in the MSN City Guides section. Itâ€™s my guess that they will be very soon once word gets out that they are open.
I stopped in for lunch on a midweek day. Slowâ€™s is located just a short distance west of Tigers Stadium. Itâ€™s in the Corktown section of Detroit. Now some of the neighborhood around Slowâ€™s may not win any city beautification award. But there are ample sports bars and other restaurants in the area. The owners of Slowâ€™s have done a nice job rehabbing an old storefront into a very comfortable restaurant/bar. A hostess greeted me and since I was by myself I chose to sit at the bar. Every table was taken and there were several customers along with me at the bar. The menu offered an abundance of appetizers but I chose to go straight to the entrees. Featured entrees included Pulled Pork, Beef Brisket, Baby Back and St. Louis style ribs and Smoked Chicken. They also offer a variety of combos. I picked The Big Three-Pulled Pork, Pulled Chicken and Sliced Brisket. You also get two sides. I chose Cole Slaw and baked beans, however the bartender talked me into trying the baked Macaroni and Cheese.
While I was waiting for my order I had a chance to ask the bartender a few questions about Slowâ€™s and how they got started. Theyâ€™ve been open for about a month. The name Slowâ€™s refers to the cooking method we all know and love: Low & Slow. They use a Southern Pride smoker for all of their meats. Apple wood is the primary smoking fuel. On each table and at various locations on the bar you will find 5 different types of barbecue sauces: Spicy, Sweet, North Carolina Sauce, Mustard Sweet and Apple. I sampled all of them and must say they were all very good. The Apple definitely had an apple flavor. The North Carolina sauce had a good bite with red pepper flakes mixed in the vinegar/tomato base. I decided to try them all with my meal. When the combo arrived there was a nice portion of all three meats. The side order of Macaroni & cheese was huge with plenty of warm melted sharp cheddar cheese. I started with a taste of the brisket and was a little disappointed. There wasnâ€™t much flavor, very little smoke in the meat although it did have a nice dark outside bark. Next I tried the pork. Better, good flavor with a nice mix of spices and also dark outside bark. The chicken also had a spicy/hot taste with apple wood smoke, very good. The Mac & Cheese was awesome. They use a small shell type pasta Conchiglie, I believe and add spices. The Cole Slaw was adequate.
Slowâ€™s also offers a variety of sandwiches. One that sounded especially interesting was the Longhorn, Beef Brisket with onion marmalade and smoked Gouda cheese. Pork, Chicken and Smoked Ham sandwiches are also offered. Side items besides those previously mentioned included Black-eyed Peas, Green Beans, and Black Beans. Service was excellent.
Iâ€™ll try Slowâ€™s again in a few months. Until then if youâ€™re in the downtown Detroit area Iâ€™d recommend trying Slowâ€™s. And when you do, send me your review weâ€™ll post it in the BBQ Forum Blog.
Upcoming reviews: Kenâ€™s Hickory Pit Barbecue-Birmingham, Al. Dreamland Barbecue-Tuscaloosa, AL. Memphis Championship Barbecue-Las Vegas, NV.