BEST BARBECUE Minneapolis 2001 - John Hardy's Bar-B-Q
1940 S. Broadway Ave.
Rochester, MN 55904
Luckily this category allows for fudging, because no one, and we mean no one in the metro area deserves the title "Best Barbecued Ribs." We'll leave those naming rights up to the judges at the annual Rib Fest in downtown Minneapolis. Those poor carnivores can gnaw their way through the chapped, charred flesh that's passing for pork at area restaurants these days--we're all out of toothpicks. (If you really need a rack, climb into your car and journey to John Hardy's Bar-B-Q in Rochester. Far as we can tell, they're the only folks this side of K.C. who have a way with the bones.) Oh, you can get a full rack ($15.75), half rack ($9.25), or quarter rack ($5) of baby-backs at this charming little hole in the wall in south Minneapolis. But we suggest tucking into one of Scott Ja-Mama's big, mouthwatering pork sandwiches ($4.65), always at the ready and, without question, the best way to experience their technique. Soaked off-the-bone in a thick, peppery jus that can be amped-up on request, Scott Ja-Mama's pulled pork will sate both your sweet tooth and your salt gland. And it doesn't hurt that the hearty-man portions all but dwarf the white bread, which functions more as flavor mop than delivery device. Don't forget to order a side of rich, meaty beans (60 cents) to go with your gratis slaw and chips.