I’ve debated writing about The Lunchbox in McDonough, GA for a couple of weeks now, mainly because it just didn’t live up to the basic standards of BBQ. They purport to be a barbeque restaurant, but I have to say, I was unfortunately not impressed. Unless they could walk me to, and show me a smoker, there is no way in the world I believe they smoked a single piece of meat. The pork was dry, the chicken came out of a plastic bag…I saw it from my view into the kitchen, maybe they smoked it off site and bagged it in to the kitchen; I don’t know, but I do know it was less than appetizing. My pork plate came with slaw, brunswick stew, toast, and I ordered a side of beans too. The stew was not memorable, the slaw had that dull outer layer – a clear sign it had been scooped into the little bowl hours, if not a day earlier. They had two versions of the same sauce, one slightly hotter than the other.
So enough about the food, I can’t leave without mentioning the service. Let’s just say when I asked the young woman taking our order if it was her first day, I was astounded when she said “no”. I could keep going on, but I won’t.
I visited Pine Mountain, Georgia and Franklin Delano Roosevelt State Park today and while in town had the chance to get some ‘que. We went to the Whistling Pig Cafe on Main Street. The cafe has a full bbq menu, but also serves a number of other menu items including some very good looking cakes. I am still kicking myself for not grabbing a piece of the electric green key lime cake! I did have the large chopped pork bbq sandwich, two sides (fried okra and their sweet and spicy beans), and a sweet tea which was all of $10 with a tip. It was good stuff. The meat was very tender and moist, served on a large bun topped with a couple of pickles and a sweet dark red sauce. The fried okra was hot crisp and tasty – pretty sure it was just prebreaded frozen stuff, but whatever, it’s good eats. The sweet and spicy beans are their version of baked beans/pork and beans. they had good flavor, not as spicy as one might have expected, but good nonetheless – I used my last piece of okra to sweep the last drips of bean sauce from the cup.
One of my dining companions got the burger, and insisted it was a valid choice over BBQ because they make a good burger. I’ll take his word for, especially since he’s been there a few times. Another at our table got the q-tater, a nice fat baked potato stuffed full of chopped pork – it sounds popular since he raved about it and the server told us they can go through 40 or 50 a day!
Sauces – there were two on the table, one a bit brighter red with a tinge of heat and another that was deep, dark, brown-red in color – must have been packed full of molasses. Both were very tasty. Overall I was quite content with my lunch today and certainly a lot of others like the place – for a Wed. afternoon the line certainly kept growing while we were there. I recommend a visit if you are in town visiting FDR State Park, the Little White House or Callaway Gardens. There is another bbq joint up the street called 3 Little Pigs – I’ll have to try that one next time I am in town.