Blue Willy’s Barbecue used to be located near the Broward County Courthouse and was one of the highlights of going to jury duty. Their food truck cranked out some of the best barbecue around. They’ve now moved from the food truck to a brick and mortar store in Pompano Beach on US 1.
The parking is a bit tight and when you pull in, you see 2 or 3 signs that designate they are only for customers of the Polish Deli next door. The others were not marked, so we parked at one of the open spots. We wanted to pop our head into the Polish Deli (knowing a lot about Polish food) and we didn’t get two steps in their direction and a guy ran out of Blue Willy’s and yelled “You guys can’t park here”, thinking we were going to the Polish Deli. We told him we were just looking in the window and were eating at Blue Willy’s and he nodded and went inside. While I can understand why he thought we were going into the Deli, it was handled a bit rudely. First off, the parking spots are not marked, only those for the Deli were…second, you could have been a little nicer when confronting possible customers. Ok…that rant is out of the way. Now to the real review.
Blue Willy’s Barbecue is a fast casual BBQ restaurant offering dine in or take out options. Wood and steel make up the walls and counters, giving it an earthy feel. It’s a nice place with a lot of seating. I wonder how they can support all the diners with such limited parking. The kitchen was large and for the most part it’s open so you can see everything that goes into preparing your order. The menu is handwritten on boards overhead and we chose the smoked beef brisket (meat only) and the barbecue smoked ribs (meat only) with a large side of collard greens. The guy taking our order was the same one that seems to be on parking watch and it took him a while to warm up. We think he knew he was wrong and maybe felt a bit awkward. By the end of the transaction, this warmed up.
While I watched the staff from the dining area, I noticed something different at this new location. Previously, the guys in the food truck were so happy and friendly and even gave me samples to try while I waited. The atmosphere here at the new location seemed a bit heavy and not as gracious. But hey…if the food is good, I guess you can overlook all of that?
We got our order to go and that drive home was torture. The smoky smell was driving us crazy. I had to peek inside and opened the pork rib container. Dang those ribs looked good. I snapped a picture right there in the car. Once home, we unpacked and dug in.
The smoked been brisket looked amazing. A dark ‘bark’ on the outside and a light smoke ring on the inside. The rub on the bark was so packed with flavor I had to take another bite to take it all in. Tender, smoky and full of flavor this is one of the best briskest around. Yes, still as good as I had at their food truck.
The pork ribs were also covered in a dry rub. They were lean and backed with meat. Perfectly sliced, they were some of the best looking ribs I’ve seen a long time. They were not totally fall of the bone, but good ribs have some chew. They were also packed with as much flavor as the brisket. Another home run.
Now onto the collard greens. I don’t usually care for them…but as I get older I find myself liking more things that I hated as a kid…or even as an adult. Now I wasn’t sure if this was one if those cases or if these were just that good. Jeff confirmed that these are just that good. They were tender and not too bitter with a smoky flavor infused. If collard greens always tasted like this everywhere, I would order them all the time.
The food is awesome here and they are worth a trip if you like barbecue. South Florida seems to have a hot or miss relationship with barbecue and Blue Willie’s is a hit out of the park. If they are consistent and crank out the food this good all the time, we have a new favorite BBQ spot. Let’s hope the parking situation isn’t really that bad and the guy just had a bad day.
Blue Willy’s Barbecue is located at 1386 S Federal Hwy Pompano Beach, FL.