Enjoy BBQ Month at the 15 Best BBQ Restaurants in the Tri-State
Not that you need a reason to eat barbecue, but if you do, let it be the fact that May is National Barbecue Month! Thankfully, we have plenty of places right here in the Tri-State to celebrate!
I recently asked my Facebook friends who they think has the best barbecue in the Tri-State, and almost immediately my phone started blowing up with comment notifications. Turns out, we're passionate about barbecue, and we all have our go to place when the craving strikes. After over 150 comments, here is a list of the 16 best places you can indulge your sweet and smokey taste buds.
Located across from Bosse Field at the corner of Main Street and Morgan Avenue, Hickory Pit Stop has been serving up championship grade ribs, pork, chicken, mutton, and more since 1957.
Despite only being in the area for a few years, and part of a national chain, Mission has made itself at home on Evansville's east side serving up fantastic pork, chicken, and beef dishes while supporting local first responders, veterans, and non-profit organizations such as 911 Gives Hope through numerous charitable donations.
A relative newcomer to the Tri-State barbecue scene, Miller's is proof you don't need a traditional brick and motor restaurant to crank out amazing ribs, chicken, pulled pork, sausage, and more along with a full complement of sides like their Mac 'N' Cheese that will make you weak in the knees. Drawing rave reviews on local social media, Warren and Diana Miller have quickly become the go-to for catering when barbecue is the menu of choice.
Another national chain that set up shop in Evansville a few years ago, the sweet smell of barbecue smoke wafting from Bandana's in front of the east side Lowes catches your nose well before you pull into the parking lot. After digging into a plate of sausage, chicken, pork, or beef, be sure to save some room for an order of fresh made donut balls. Even if you don't have room, order them anyway. The discomfort of gorging yourself will be totally worth it.
An Owensboro staple that feels like it's been around as long as the town itself, Moonlite BBQ has been firing up the smokers and delivering their signature style of barbecue for over 50 years.
Don't let the unassuming facade of Hawg 'N' Sauce fool you. Inside owners Jeff and Sabrina Schelhorn are whipping up a ridiculously good menu of St. Louis style ribs, smoked chicken, pulled pork, ham chops, and more, For a unique twist on barbecue, order the Chip-A-Hawg from the appetizer menu. A half order is a meal all its own!
Tucked in behind the Hilltop Inn on Evansville's west side, Marx Barbecue and Catering has been satisfying barbecue lovers' palettes with chicken, ribs, pork, and turkey since 1955. For something a little different, try their Pork Grenades; homemade pork sausage balls, wrapped in bacon, and smothered in their signature sweet and sassy sauce.
Sitting at the intersection of First Avenue and Camp Ground Road since what feels like the dawn of time, Wolf's has been a mainstay of the Evansville barbecue scene for generations. Despite the passage of time, and the increase in other barbecue joints, Wolf's is still a local favorite for baby back ribs, beef brisket, barbecued chicken, and all the fixings.
Situated right in the middle of a residential neighborhood in downtown Henderson, J & B's is "The tri-state’s best kept secret for BBQ," according to one review on their Facebook page. Stop by for fall-off-the-bone ribs, and some of the best mutton customers say you'll find anywhere.
Using the same recipe and method created by founder, Charles "Pappy" Foreman in 1918 (!!!), Old Hickory has been cranking out some of Owensboro's favorite mutton, chicken, ribs, pulled pork, ham, and turkey for over six generations, and even bottles and sells their signature sauce so you can take the taste home.
Easy to miss if you're not paying attention, Frank Jr.'s Barbecue and Catering occupies the final spot in a small shopping plaza next to Andrew's Auto Sales on Covert Avenue on Evansville's east side. But don't let the small size of the restaurant fool you, there's big flavor being made inside with ribs customers can't get enough of.
As nearly every episode of Diners, Drive-Ins, and Dives will show you, the best food usually comes from places that don't look like typical restaurants. Based on the comments on their Facebook page, Thomason's Barbecue is one of those places with customers raving about the mutton, chicken, ribs, and more.
Occupying the space next to Covenant Community Church off North Main Street, Brother's offers hearty plate lunches of beef brisket, half chicken's, and ribs, all of which are available in sandwich form for smaller appetites, or those times when you need something quick. There's also an item called "Texas Toothpicks" on the appetizer menu. I don't know what they are, but I know I want some.
The menu at New Frontier in northern Vanderburgh County isn't exclusively barbecue, but fans of the restaurant say it's worth the trip to Daylight on Highway 57 for their smoked pork chops and pulled pork.
Much like New Frontier, the menu at the Nisbet isn't just barbecue, but the options offered such as pulled pork, pulled chicken, ribs, and more have had residents making the trip to Haubstadt since it opened its doors in 1912.
No matter which one you choose, getting your barbecue fix is just a few minutes away!