Tuesday, November 5, 2013

Rub's Backcountry Smokehouse

Location: 6954 N Western
Cost: About $15 per person

I'd like to start today's post off with a big thanks to Josh Finkle (the man who saved Jeff Eats Chicago). Due to a mix up with my google admin account, I was within a matter of hours to having my domain dissolved or whatever happens when you don't pay for your .com account. Josh and his fancy "computer skills" figured things out just in the nick of time, so THANKS AGAIN!

That being said, I'm very excited about today's post. You may recall some mention of my working out in the Western suburbs at Macneal Hospital to start the year off. One of the surgeons there, Dr. Cho, has even more food knowledge than I do. He got a gift for a meat smoking course at Rub's Backcountry Smokehouse, and upon returning gave it a really strong recommendation. So the other day, I met my parents in Rogers Park to dig into some solid BBQ.

Rub's is right on the corner of Western and Lunt. It's pretty small and easy to miss if you're not looking. There's plenty of street parking. They've got this little patio out front, but it was way too cold the night we went. They've got a large communal table to one side and a row of tables along the other wall. The wait staff is really friendly, and it's BYOB. Apparently, some diners misconstrued the meaning of BYOB and brought in their own Sweet Baby Ray's instead of booze. I couldn't believe they tolerated that, but those people were missing out on the solid sauce options anyways. The cost is really cheap. The three of us ordered a huge portion of the menu, and our bill barely broke $50.

The Food
We didn't waste time on apps and dove straight into the main course. We got the St. Louis Ribs, the Smoked Sausages, the Brisket, and the Pulled Chicken Sandwich not to mention the Mac n' Cheese, the Baked Beans, the Coleslaw, and the Custard Filled Cornbread. All of the meats were incredibly smokey. The ribs made you work for the meat just the right amount. They weren't all that saucy, but they had a selection of side options to dip. My favorite was probably the South Carolina mustard style sauce. The sausages had a crisp casing that had somewhat separated itself from the meat in a way that heavy smoking can do. They were juicy and flavorful. The Chicken had a complex dry rub packing a flavor all its own, and despite the bun was not dry in the least. The mac n' cheese was probably my least favorite item and was way too heavy on the bread crumb topping. The cornbread on the other hand was awesome. The custard filling was really unique and the little kernels of corn strewn throughout made for a great texture.

The St. Louis Ribs

 The Mac n' Cheese

 The Smoked Sausage

 The Custard Filled Cornbread

The Brisket

 The Pulled Chicken Sandwich

Since we hadn't had enough to eat, we went for some Smoked Apple Crisp for dessert (I'd wanted the cobbler, but they were out). The crisp came in a little pan topped with plenty of vanilla ice cream. The dish had a great balance of hot and cold with a ton of sweetness.

The Smoked Apple Crisp

Rubs was easily one of the best BBQ meals I've had in a long time. With exception of the mac n' cheese, the meal was spot on. Plus, it was probably the least expensive sit down BBQ I've had in the city. I'm giving them 4.5 out of 5 Pearls.

Rub's Backcountry Smokehouse on Urbanspoon


  1. I agree! Great place! But it is on Western and LUNT.

    This is in my hood, so I have been here several times and will go back again!