UPDATE March 2013
Out of Business... a new BBQ restaurant has opened in that location. Getting rave reviews from locals. I'll stop in soon and see what's up!
UPDATE December 8, 2011:
Stopped in for some BBQ for dinner (take-out) and they let me know they were having smoked turkeys again for Christmas! My son was so happy to hear that and has requested another one be delivered to his house for our Christmas dinner! I think I can make that happen :-)
Last week I tried one of the new bar-b-que joints in Port Isabel. I stopped in after some last minute grocery shopping prior to heading off to the family Thanksgiving, mostly because I was simply starving. I forgot to eat breakfast and I had been to Zumba and I had a nail appointment in an hour. Since my last stop was at Wal-mart I glanced over to the small strip shopping center and saw wood smoke curling in the air from the little gazebo built to house the pit for R&R Bar-b-que. It smelled so good I decided now was the time to stop! I was so tired I could barely read the menu. I'd wanted a sandwich and my eye just went right over them and stopped at the 2-meat plate. I decided that would be better than loading up with a big old bun! I ordered pork ribs and brisket - and then had to decide if I wanted chopped brisket (the good moist stuff) or the lean sliced. I went for moist. I'm pretty basic with my bar-b-que likes...so my sides were potato salad and cole slaw.
While I waited I was chatting with the young man behind the counter and he told me they were busily getting ready to smoke turkeys for Thanksgiving. I asked about the price - found them to be reasonable - and gave a shout out to my sister to see if she wanted me to get one to bring. We had just discussed the fact that she was concerned her 20 pound turkey, a ham, and a brisket were not going to be enough meats for the group of 36! When she found it out was under $30 for the turkey she said "yes, bring it on"!
I decided I would take my to-go lunch with me and "test the waters" so to speak. I wanted to make sure the food was good before ordering anything else! They told me to let them know that day if I wanted to pick it up on Tuesday evening (as we were leaving crack-of-dawn Wednesday). They told me they could have it chilled and in a baking bag with instructions for warming if I picked it up Tuesday evening. I told them I'd be back with them if I wanted to do that.
I wasn't sure if it was because I was so hungry or WHAT...but that was some of the best tasting brisket and tender, fall-off-the-bone pork ribs that I'd eaten in a good long time. The sauce was delicious as well, just the way I like it with a bit of sweetness in it. I admit, I would have preferred the sauce on the side and a bit more of it (my husband laughingly says I have a little meat with my bar-b-que sauce and it's true!). But, other than that, I had nothing I could complain about in the meat department. I liked the cole slaw - creamy and sweetly tart the way I like it. The potato salad was a bit bland. I like mine with onion and more crunch (pickles) than they had. It was just "okay"...but I tore up some of my onions they served on the side, stirred it in, and I was happy.
I had heard, from a couple of different people, that their servings were too small for the price. I felt like it was "just right" for the $9.95 plate. I was full and satisfied.
That brought me back to the R&R BBQ to place my order. I paid, got my receipt, and was told to be there by 7:00 Tuesday evening...which I was. The teen was with me then and he wanted to try their sausage plate - with mac and cheese and beans as his sides. He said the sausage and sauce were great, the beans "pretty good", and he didn't like the mac and cheese. You have to understand though...it was closing time and it did look a little dry...AND, my son likes Kraft in a blue box mac and cheese. Anything else will always be graded "not as great". So, we got his meal and I got my turkey and off we went the next morning with the turkey happily ensconced in my cooler.
Seven and a half hours of grueling holiday traffic later, I dropped it off with my son so he could re-heat it Thanksgiving morning and bring it out to my sister's house for the big meal. It was BEAUTIFULLY moist - freaking DELICIOUS - and every single bite of that turkey was eaten up. Who knew...smoked turkey ruled the day among a huge quantity of realllly tasty meats all around. We were such piggies I didn't get a chance to snap a photo of the turkey before it was demolished...but it was sure purty!
I can't say how highly I would recommend ANYONE wanting an awesome smoked turkey...to hie themselves on over to R&R Bar-b-que in Port Isabel. If you can find the Wal-mart, you can find R&R. They aren't open real late so check their sign for the current operating hours. I'd recommend lunch!
The people were nice, friendly, and eager to please. I will definitely be going back. I hope they make it. It's in the old Quizno's location (dang, I loved Quizno's) next door to Mickey's. They might be affiliated with Mickey's...that's what my receipt had at the top. I've never been to Mickey's so I don't really know what's up with that. I do know, however, that those folks know how to really smoke some good meats...tender, good smoke ring, good sauce. That's all I need!
SPI FLIP FLOP FOODIE RATING:
3 1/2 – Pretty Yummy - I feel my flip flops wanting to head back from time to time!
(It would have been a 4 for the meat - but the sides were not as high of a quality as the meats...gotta have it all for a 4 or more!)