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Barbecue Kitchen

1437 Virginia Ave., College Park, GA - (404) 766-9906
Posted By Michael Stern on 11/9/2010 10:11:00 PM
The guy next to me on the plane sneezed and coughed all the way from take off in White Plains to touchdown in Atlanta, so when I got my rental car, I desperately sought prophylactic health food. How fortunate for me -- and for any hungry traveler arriving at Hartsfield Airport -- that the Barbecue Kitchen is practically around the corner; for this place doesn't just specialized in barbecue; vegetables are its calling. In desperate need of good-for-you food, I ordered collard greens, rutabagas, and squash casserole to accompany my plate of hickory-smoked pork. Each was a shot in the arm -- the greens plain and leafy and powerfully GREEN, the rutabagas tasting of sweet earth and fresh-dug roots, the squash falling-apart soft and innocent.

Each came in its own little bowl atop a partitioned unbreakable plate, the largest section of which was filled with rough-chopped barbecue painted with tangy cinnabar sauce. The meat was yeomanly, although the biggest pieces tended to be dry (thank God for the sauce). Given a choice of cornbread or biscuits, I asked for both, the former not the least bit sweet (a perfect companion for those greens), the latter a good moppin' sop for the last of the barbecue. Of course, it all came with a tumbler of ice tea.

And it came ultra-fast, delivered by a waitress who is one of a team of veterans whom diner aficionados will love. I envisioned these birds back in the days before smoking was evil, toting meals to a table with an unfiltered Camel precariously dangling from their lips, never letting ash hit a customer's plate (unless the customer deserved it).

It was an all-around delightful meal, and I dare say: Mission Accomplished. My airplane seatmate's germs didn't have a chance. I walked out of the Barbecue Kitchen feeling as invulnerable as Superman.

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Scorecard

5 - Overall: Legendary - Worth driving from anyplace
Overall: Legendary - Worth driving from anyplace
Fresh Rutabagas
Barbecue Pork
Collard Greens
Bread Basket
Squash
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Reviewers Photos [Upload Your Photos]

A fine example of meat and three: barbecue pork surrounded on an unbreakable partitioned plate by fresh rutabagas, collard greens, and squash. Not pictured: corn bread, biscuit, and ice tea. And coconut cake for dessert.
"A fine example of meat and three: barbecue pork surrounded on an unbreakable partitioned plate by fresh rutabagas, collard greens, and squash. Not pictured: corn bread, biscuit, and ice tea. And coconut cake for dessert."
Michael Stern





Fresh rutabagas were a revelation: buttery rich and earthy, more sweet than bitter.
"Fresh rutabagas were a revelation: buttery rich and earthy, more sweet than bitter."
Michael Stern


Choose corn bread or biscuits with lunch. Or have one of each.
"Choose corn bread or biscuits with lunch. Or have one of each."
Michael Stern


For breakfast, the country-cured ham with red eye gravy is the thing to order.
"For breakfast, the country-cured ham with red eye gravy is the thing to order."
Cliff Strutz


I can believe it's not butter. High dairy consciousness is not among Georgia's many culinary claims to fame.
"I can believe it's not butter. High dairy consciousness is not among Georgia's many culinary claims to fame."
Michael Stern


Although the gravy was a bit on the thin side, we were impressed by how much sausage it contained. Biscuits and gravy can be ordered as an entree or, in this case, a single biscuit as a side.
"Although the gravy was a bit on the thin side, we were impressed by how much sausage it contained. Biscuits and gravy can be ordered as an entree or, in this case, a single biscuit as a side."
Cliff Strutz


A square meal at a fair price.
"A square meal at a fair price."
Michael Stern


Mid-Morning at the Barbecue Kitchen, there were plenty of seats available. By the time I left at the beginning of lunch hour, it was filling up.
"Mid-Morning at the Barbecue Kitchen, there were plenty of seats available. By the time I left at the beginning of lunch hour, it was filling up."
Michael Stern


If you fly into Atlanta hungry, this is a restaurant you need to know about. It is a five-minute drive from the airport.
"If you fly into Atlanta hungry, this is a restaurant you need to know about. It is a five-minute drive from the airport. "
Michael Stern


Not that I have anything against Waffle House, but there was no competition in this side-by-side choice. Not too many restaurants I know are so eager to crow about their fresh vegetables.
"Not that I have anything against Waffle House, but there was no competition in this side-by-side choice. Not too many restaurants I know are so eager to crow about their fresh vegetables."
Michael Stern



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