Saturday, January 22, 2011

Book Review: Dr. BBQ's Big-Time Road Trip!

I have a dream, that one day it would be nice to publish my blog as one big ass book. Fortunately/Unfortunately (depending on who you are) Ray Lampe, aka Dr. BBQ, has already beat me to it. In his latest book "Dr. BBQ's Big-Time Barbecue Road Trip!", Dr. BBQ drives cross country reviewing almost 100 different BBQ joints.

Not only does he give his 2-cents on how he rates the BBQ, he even adds his own mock recipes of the famous BBQ he's eaten, including the sides. He talks with BBQ competition winners, restaurant owners, and BBQ pit builders. When someone won't reveal their award winning secret, Dr. BBQ will give a recipe that comes close.

The book is divided in 8 sections starting with the BBQ capitals - Kansas City, North Carolina, Tennessee, Texas, and the moves on with "The rest of America" (The North, The South, The East, and The West).

I recommend this book for anyone who wants to know the history about the famous restaurants, the different BBQ Associations, the competitions, and recipes. While reading it all the way through can give it a "text-book" vibe, I strongly recommend it as a reference book.

Now for the part of a review I'm good at, criticism. I felt he kind of gave Texas a quick run through. He talked so much about the restaurants in other areas and then when it got to Texas, he basically printed out a score card...WTF Dude? My highlight on the Texas chapter was how he talked about David Klose's BBQ Pits. Also, there were very few things he didn't like. I've been to Kreuz Market and Southside and thought it was over-rated and tasted below average (both places Dr. BBQ gave a 9 & 9.5). I've seen Dr. BBQ on tv a handful of times and he comes across as a really nice guy. I would assume that Dr. BBQ is just being nice to his fellow BBQ friends because I know he knows what good BBQ tastes like. Also, it is obvious that he can't vist EVERY BBQ joint in the country but I'm surprised he skipped City Market BBQ and Snows while he was in Texas!

If you really want to know how good the bbq is at the restaurants, I wouldn't put all of your trust in this book. I assume his ratings are a little inflated. But if you are stuck in New York City (with no suicide pill) and don't know where to get BBQ, need to enter a competition near you, read up on the history of some of the best restaurants, and looking for a good recipe, then buy "Dr. BBQ's Big-Time Barbecue Road Trip!"

Dr. BBQ's Big-Time Road Trip! will be receiving a 4.5 out of 5 stars.

P.S. Dr. BBQ is the Ambassador of BBQ. He's legit and knows what he's doing. To get an idea of who he is check out this video...