While Sundays are prime for a lovely brunch, it only seems fitting that Father’s Day be reserved for a hearty meal. So, instead of heading out to your usual mid-morning eatery for eggs and toast, try Atlanta’s top barbecue spots for plentiful helpings of ribs, pulled pork and, of course, lots of delicious sauce. Dads, this one is for you.
This is a no-frills rib shack: The décor consists of tacky neon lights complete with a squiggly tail of a pig, beer signs and minimalist tables. But it isn’t the ambiance that draws locals to this barbecue favorite, it’s the food: The meats are incredible (pulled pork, ribs and chicken), and the rum baked beans and pecan pie are must-tries.
Located just south of the hip Little Five Points neighborhood, Fox Bros. Bar-B-Q offers a recently renovated patio with rustic wood paneling, exposed vented ceilings and the Texas star dotted along the interior and exterior of the space. More importantly, this place boasts the best sauce in the city. But the not-as-sweet sauce is more Texas barbecue than what Atlantans might grill up. Fox Bros. has an extensive menu, including the delicious Brunswick stew, pulled pork and baby-back ribs. It’s also one of the few barbecue spots where you can find a veggie plate (build your own dish by selecting four of the meatless sides, including fried okra and mac and cheese).
The menu here is simple, but luckily all of the staples that dads love are accounted for. In addition to the expected smoked meats, it also serves Texas beef sausage. Be warned: The seating is minimal. But if you manage to land a table or a bar seat, you’ll have enough room for a tray with a half rack of ribs, a smoked turkey breast and an order of pulled chicken.
Daddy D’z features a fun barbecue menu with a twist — you’ll find nifty nuggets like the barbecue pork wrapped in bite-sized dough that’s fried crisp and golden. It’s also one of the only barbecue joints of note where you can get fried green tomatoes on the side and red beans and rice. Portions are huge here, so come hungry.
One of the best finds in Atlanta’s popular Virginia Highlands neighborhood is DBA Barbecue. The chef-owned, casual restaurant goes beyond the regular barbecue offerings with sweet potato tots dipped in honey and the turkey burger topped with Swiss cheese, Portobello mushrooms and fried onions. Carnivores will want to order the barbecue nachos with pulled pork, chicken, brisket, lettuce, tomato, cheddar, salsa, jalapeños, sour cream and guacamole, all of which is smothered in cheese sauce. For something a bit more traditional, opt for the two-meat sampler, where you can choose house-cured pastrami, baby-back ribs, St. Louis ribs, pulled pork or smoked turkey breast for your ultimate Father’s Day meal.
Photos courtesy of iStock and Michael Phillips