Pappy's Smokehouse | Midwest Living

Pappy's Smokehouse

3106 Olive St.
Saint Louis  Missouri  63103
United States
(314) 535-4340
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Midwest Living Review

Manya Kaczkowski
Bring your appetite: From tender, tasty ribs to slow-roasted pork and chicken, you'll want plenty of room for some of St. Louis' best barbecue.

You can easily find Pappy's Smokehouse -- just use your nose. You'll see the smoker on the sidewalk; occasionally someone opens the lid to baste or turn the meat, tantalizing the entire neighborhood. This BBQ shack delivers fine flavors, too, from slow-roasted pulled pork all the way down to fried corn on the cob. Because everything is so good, we recommend a combo platter. Choose from pulled pork or chicken, beef brisket and turkey breast, with a couple of sides. We also recommend dry-rubbed, slow-smoked ribs, available in either half or full slabs. Pulled pork is tender and lean; brisket sliced thin and full of flavor -- this is our favorite of the meats. The ribs, however, run a really close second -- falling off the bone and meaty. Three sauces, each quite different from the others (mild, hot and sweet), let you customize your meal. The not-to-miss side is sweet potato fries -- sugared instead of salted. Co-owner John Matthews says they put the brown sugar on top of the smoker overnight to get it dried out and carmelized/crumbly. Other sides (baked beans, coleslaw, applesauce) are good but unremarkable, with the exception of fried corn, which is so concentrated in sweet flavor that we didn't even mind wearing it on our teeth afterward. Wait times are nearly intolerable considering how casual the place is. Noon on Saturdays means 45-60 minutes, followed by another five after ordering at the counter. That said, once you've waited, it's a beautiful thing to hear your name called out by a server emerging from the kitchen, arms laden with hot, savory food. (Don't have time to wait? Call ahead to order and pick up your food to go.)

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