Food has always been something that I’ve found comfort in. I do like many different cuisines. However, I would have to say my favorite is BBQ. My wife calls BBQ my “mistress”. I LOVE BBQ. Good BBQ, comfy clothes, friends/family, and some good music are always a recipe for a good day/night.
My dad’s family is originally from Birmingham, Alabama. Some of my earliest memories as a kid were taking road trips from Chicago to the south (Tennessee, Georgia, Florida, Alabama). Any food stops we made were predominately at BBQ restaurants. 98% of the time, we weren’t stopping at the local roadside restaurant either. Please remember that this was also wayyy before Yelp, Eater, Infatuation, or any of the other dinning guide websites you can now easily access. Many times we usually found these places by befriending a person at the local gas station or convenience store. It wasn’t just one question either, there were multiple questions after the “where can you get some good BBQ?” We asked how is the BBQ being prepared? Is there a smoker out back? Charcoal? Or wood? What type of wood? What type of BBQ? Texas style? NC Style? I mean, this was pretty much a full on interrogation of someone we just met. We were finding the place to eat bbq by the look and smell of the restaurant. Let me just give this one tip. If you go to a BBQ spot, and BEFORE you even set foot in to the restaurant it doesn’t smell like BBQ…. You’re not at the right place. You should be able to pull up see logs of wood, a smoker, and when you open the window/door, you should be able to instantly smell that sweet smell of BBQ.
My quest to find the best BBQ in the country still continues today. People that have traveled with me can confirm that even with the conveniences of yelp, eater, instagram, etc. I still enjoy the interaction with people to talk about BBQ. One day I might just have to provide a book of all of the BBQ restaurants I’ve been at. However, for the purpose of the blog today, let's talk about my favorite BBQ place in Arizona.
I’ve lived in Arizona now for 12 years. For the first 8 years, I can confidently say that there was no good bbq in the entire state. Then a funny thing happened. … I was driving home from work and 3 minutes from my office, I saw a sign going up that said “LITTLE MISS BBQ”. As I pulled in to take a look around I saw picnic tables getting set up, smokers, piles of wood. All good signs. A few days later they were open for business. You could smell the sweet smell of BBQ from about a block away. For those of you who are into Austin, TX BBQ. LMBBQ has a very similar set up to Franklin BBQ. Only open for lunch. No reservations, line up, when they sell out they sell out. Much to my delight LMBBQ was outstanding. There isn’t a bad piece of smoked meat on the menu (trust me I’ve tried them all). The owners Scott and Bekke Holmes share the same passion as I do of making people comfortable. They now have 2 locations (Tempe and Phoenix). Both are great, and I would highly recommend them as a must stop when you’re visiting the state of Arizona.