What's for dinner tonight? The dreaded question. Well, we're here to rescue you with the perfect answer--barbecue! Things like coffee in Billings, Montana, might pique your interest in local specialty shops, but nothing says down-home cooking like a feast from the local pitmaster. Here's a look at three great options.
The Absolute Best BBQ Places in Billings MT
Barbecue is one of those things that's just so good when it's good! It's a smash-hit of flavor and aromas that make your senses sing. Few cuisines so wonderfully balance each flavor to create a perfect chord of savory goodness.
How do they do it? The science of BBQ is more complex than you might imagine! A lot of that enjoyable experience comes from the way it smells. The browning of the meat, called the Maillard Reaction, released amazing aromas that get your mouth watering before you even start eating.
And then there are the flavor combinations. Barbecue recipes are packed with two secret flavors that we love. Umami is that salty, delicious yumminess that comes from proteins. And then there's the fat, which smoked, slow-cooked recipes master by breaking down the meat just right.
However they do it, there are plenty of options in Billings. Is anyone else getting hungry?
Famous Dave's Bar-B-Que
Famous Dave's is a chain 'cue joint serving smoked and grilled recipes all over the country. Dave's brings family-style barbeque home with their "Famous Feasts." The All-American can serve four to six, or the Feast For 2 is perfect for a couple. Their St. Louis-style spareribs are not to be missed, rubbed with a secret blend of spices and hickory smoked for three to four hours.
Dave's has an excellent selection, so everyone in your group is sure to find something they'll love. From the sassy salads, cajun chicken, and fried catfish to the award-winning bread pudding, you can't go wrong at Dave's. Barbeque specialties of the house include Georgia chopped pork, Texas beef brisket, and Memphis-style rib tips.
Dave's is located on King Avenue West and South 29th Street West.
Dickey's Barbecue Pit
It all began in 1941 in Dallas. Now, Dickey's has over 550 restaurants in 44 states. Their winning formula includes certified pitmasters slow-smoking all the meat on site. The 'cue is Texas-style and comes with homestyle sides. Their motto is "Legit. Texas. Barbecue."
You won't find much beyond delicious barbecue here, though. At Dickey's, pick a combo or a one-meat plate, either of which comes with two sides and a roll. You can also get delicious barbecue sandwiches with your choice of meat. If you're looking to feed the whole group, "packs" are available that can feed up to six people. You get to choose from seven different sauces and two different rubs.
Dickey's Barbecue Pit is located downtown on Montana Avenue, just north of North 27th Street.
Blues BBQ is our local home-grown barbecue joint--sort of. Kenny and Kim Hager founded the restaurant in Sheridan, Wyoming, in 1995, but they relocated to Billings in 2004. We couldn't be happier they did. Everything is made from scratch, with handpicked meats and large portions. Their ribs come as combo plates or by themselves. Pick two sides with every plate.
Check out the crew or family packs if you're feeding a crowd. The Fabulous Four crew pack is perfect for two; it has a quarter pound each of brisket, sausage, and shredded pork, plus four ribs and four small sides.
Blues have won the Billings Gazette Readers' Choice awards for many years. They're open Tuesday through Saturday. The restaurant is located on Hilltop Road and Main Street.
Time to Chow Down
We all feel a little hungry, so get out and place your orders. The meat has already been smoking for a couple of hours--all that's missing is you.