Take 10 - New England's best barbecue
When Bob Ballou played in a blues band back in the day, a band mate nicknamed him “BBQ Bob’’ after the legendary Georgia country blues singer. The name stuck, even if Ballou gave up music after 13 years because “with kids to take care of, it didn’t exactly pay the bills.’’ A bigger than life character, he’s been a pit master ever since, setting up in an orange trailer next to The Good Food Store nearly four years ago. Ballou keeps it simple: chicken, pulled pork, whole slabs of pork ribs, and a brisket rubbed with mustard seed, garlic, ground chili peppers, and just a little salt. “I cook it overnight for around 16 hours so it’s black and ugly on the outside and tender and juicy inside,’’ he explains. “One of my customers from Oklahoma came up with the slogan, ‘You don’t need teeth to eat our beef.’ Some of my older regulars will back that up.’’
212 Mayville Road (Route 2), Bethel, Maine. 207-824-4744, www.therealbbqbob.com. Open Thursday-Tuesday for lunch and dinner. $6.99-$22.99.