Monday, July 6, 2009

Review: Dixie Bones

I have lived in the Washington, D.C.-metro area for many years. And if there is one thing I really miss about having left the deep South, it would have to be barbecue.

Let me be more specific: I miss Memphis-style BBQ, which basically means pulled pork barbecue with plenty of slightly sweet, tomato based sauce on it.

As far as pork BBQ is concerned, Washington has been something of a wasteland. The chain Red Hot 'N Blue is perfectly okay, but the quality of its pork barbecue is inconsistent and it has never been as good as the BBQ I enjoyed in Arkansas during my years growing up there.

This past weekend, I finally got around to taking a roadtrip about 25 miles south of D.C. to Woodbridge, Va. I had been told by friends that I should try Dixie Bones, a BBQ eatery located in that town, only a few minutes off of I-95.

Well, as I approached Dixie Bones, I tried not to get my hopes up. But, as it turns out, the meal I had there was excellent. The pork barbecue was excellent, the cornbread was quite good, the BBQ beans were a B-, but the creamy cole slaw was an A-. The collard greens were also an A-.

I will definitely return to Dixie Bones. The food and service were very, very good. (You can eat in or take out.) My only complaint is that the BBQ is more inspired by Carolina traditions than Memphis. In other words, the sauce leans toward the vinegar side. I can appreciate the tanginess of a vinegar-based BBQ sauce, but I still prefer a thicker sauce with a hint of molasses in it.

I am told that Dixie Bones has tasty pies, but I didn't have any room left for one of them. Maybe next time.


Nelson said...

Dear Mr. Food Dude,
Thank you for the kind remarks about Dixie Bones. Like most people around here, they think our barbecue was inspired by North Carolina. I grew up in Birmingham where my favorite place was Ollies; by the time I came along the grandson was running the place. They had a vinegar based sauce like ours. I like to say that the great North Carolina barbecuers learned the secrets of their sauce from Ollie McClung.

Hope to see you again soon.

Nelson Head

Di said...

We've lived in Woodbridge for a long, long time and Dixie Bones is definitely a family favorite...the food is consistently good. The pies are as good as they look and the perfect finishing touch to a hearty meal.
My Dixie Bones "comfort food"? The Giant Stuffed Potatoes!

Food Dude said...

Thanks, both of you, for the comments. I truly enjoyed eating at Dixie Bones. It's the first "authentic" BBQ place in the DC area I've found. Hooray for that! Keep up the good work, Nelson. I will definitely be back.