Thursday, September 3, 2009

Dinosaur BBQ

And now for a Rochester landmark, Dinosaur BBQ...anyone who has been in Rochester for more than 10 minutes has probably heard of Dinosaur BBQ. It's like Wegman's. You have out of town guests? You take them to the Pittsford Wegmans and you take them to Dinosaur BBQ...and if they're feeling particularly brave, you take them to Nick Tahou's. When I moved here, the number 1 question asked of me was, "Have you been to Dino yet?" BBQ has somehow found a home in Western NY. For all of you transplants who have yet to be to Dino, we'll answer your question, "Does it live up to the hype?"


Dinosaur BBQ started out in Syracuse as a Biker's joint. How it's come to be such a Rochester family institution is beyond me. But you walk into the place and chances are good you'll see bikes out front, it's rough-looking. It certainly doesn't have the attitude of a biker-bar though. Inside the walls are wood, dark, and littered with memorbilia, but this isn't the neighborhood Friday's! There are a few areas that seat diners, a take-out section, a bar area, and a couple tables outdoors. Be prepared if you're seated at the long table at the bar to strike up conversation with those around you. It's a popular spot, any meal-time is going to be busy. I personally recommend going for a late lunch on the weekend if you're prone to being antsy while waiting for a table. It's a bit loud inside, not exactly a "romantic" date place.


We had a very pleasant waitress on our last trip. Nothing particularly stood out about her, but she did her job with a smile and did it well. Not much more you can ask for! They seem to have designated bus boys that will come around and periodically ask if you're done with your plate. I like not having to sit with a dirty plate in front of me, so a thumbs up to that. The hostess stand can seem a bit unfriendly, but I think it's more because they're the most hectic area of the place on most visits.

Food (and drink)

The beer list here is pretty extensive. Geoff had the Sam Adams Summer Ale and I was able to get a Mike's Hard Lemonade to drink. They have a full bar, beer, & wine in addition to your standard drink choices. If you're looking for a place to grab a drink & watch the game, this could be a good long as you're okay watching whatever game they want!

I was starving when we got in, so I ordered a lot of food. Starting with the fried green tomatoes.

I'm not sure what possessed me to try these the first time I ordered them, I'm not a tomato fan, but now I get them every time. They have a great tang and crunch to them. We were trying to figure out what the sauce is that comes with it. We assume it's some kind of take on a ranch, but it's not a true ranch. What you see above is the "small" portion. They do offer one that's twice the size as well as "fancy" ones that come with shrimp, cheddar, & bacos. I've never had the fancy ones, I'm perfectly fine with the plain ones!

Being a BBQ place, they obviously have an assortment of sauces. I don't really like a lot of sauce on my food, so I'm fine with what's on there, but you can always add to what's on your meat...

The one closest to this end of the picture is just the regular sauce and they get spicier from there. The one furthest back is down right hot. Geoff tried a little bite...I don't have that kind of bravery. It's the Devil's Duel Habenero Pepper Sauce.

Geoff had a combo plate... pulled pork and beef brisket. It came with your choice of 2 sides and the corn bread.

Geoff wasn't nearly as hungry as I was, so most of this became the next day's lunch! It was as good as always! He has a thing for Dino's Mac & Cheese. We found the recipe online, but I have yet to try to make it, it seems kind of complicated. I'll happily just go to Dino to get it!

As I mentioned, I was starving for whatever reason that day and I couldn't make up my mind between the beef brisket or ribs. Imagine my delight when I saw that they had a combo platter! Oh! Heavenly!

Mine came with 2 sides as well, and as you can tell, I ordered the same 2 sides. We both later agreed that 2 sides with pastas are a little much. But both are tasty! (It's the mac salad on the left and mac & cheese on the right.) I finished most of what was on my plate...pretty sad, but it was tasty!!

Final Thoughts
If you're in the mood for BBQ, Rochester has some pretty decent offerings. Geoff has lived in Texas for a short while, so he can tell you it doesn't quite compare, but for this part of the country? I'd say we do pretty darn good! Now of course, there's always the competition among other BBQ joints in the city...which I have yet to visit! (Shhhh, don't tell anyone!) So I can't tell you which is better than the other. Perhaps we'll have a showdown sometime and order takeout from both places.

All in all, Dino is pretty darn good. I don't quite get why it's so big in Rochester. But when people say "you've got to go to Dino!" and you haven't been yet...allow them to take you. You won't be disappointed!

No comments:

Post a Comment