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Sep 2, 200912:00 AM
Haute Plates

Our weekly blog on the New Orleans fine dining scene

The Joint

The Joint offers some of the best barbecue to be found in Orleans Parish.

Photo courtesy of Jay Forman

Looking for some distinctive barbecue in a setting with enough local character to stand up to the dry rub on its ribs? If so, check out The Joint, a shaggy dog ‘cue shack nestled deep in the Bywater where Poland Avenue snugs up against Dauphine Street.

If the Saturn Bar opened up a barbecue destination, I imagine that it would look like this: a kitschy indoor/outdoor locale seemingly furnished with found furniture and a soundtrack courtesy of a great jukebox, all pulled together by the heady scent of wood smoke in the air. As a plus, the clientele is diverse enough to match the offbeat décor. On a recent Friday at high noon, the line was composed of neighborhood folk, service industry types, professionals and an Army colonel with several privates in tow.

The baby back ribs here are some of the best in the city. My one quibble would be that the silver skin wasn’t removed prior to smoking, something I’d have to assume they do when competing in Memphis in May. The beef brisket is über-tasty as well, rendered fork-tender and sliced into long strips that can be cut easily with the heel of a white plastic fork. The pulled pork sandwich is a classic. For sides, the lightly dressed coleslaw is decent, but if you must have something green, opt for the salad, which features a smoked-tomato-and-onion dressing. For the more substantial sides, the mac and cheese is good, as are the baked beans. Round it out with a sweet tea or an Abita beer, and you’ll have as good a barbecue experience as can be had in Orleans Parish, with soulful character enough to match the food. A catering menu is offered as well, making it a good option for upcoming football parties going into fall. The price points are low, and the vibe is laidback, making this a true neighborhood gem.

Contact Info

The Joint
801 Poland Ave.
(504) 949-3232
www.alwayssmokin.com
 

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Haute Plates

Our weekly blog on the New Orleans fine dining scene

about

Robert D. Peyton was born at Ochsner Hospital and, apart from four years in Tennessee for college and three years in Baton Rouge for law school, has lived here his entire life. He is a strong believer in the importance of food to our local culture and in the importance of our local food culture, generally. He has practiced law since 1994, and began writing about food on his website, www.appetites.us, in 1999. He mainly wrote about partying that year, obviously.

In 2006, New Orleans Magazine named Appetites the best food blog in New Orleans. The choice was made relatively easy due to the fact that Appetites was, at the time, the only food blog in New Orleans.

He began writing the Restaurant Insider column for New Orleans Magazine in 2007 and has been published in St. Charles Avenue, Louisiana Life and New Orleans Homes and Lifestyles magazines. He is the only person he knows personally who has been interviewed in GQ magazine, albeit for calling Alan Richman a nasty name. He is not proud of that, incidentally. (Yes, he is.)

Robert’s maternal grandmother is responsible for his love of good food, and he has never since had fried chicken or homemade biscuits as good as hers. He developed his curiosity about restaurant cooking in part from the venerable PBS cooking show "Great Chefs" and has an extensive collection of cookbooks, many of which do not require coloring, and some of which have not been defaced.

Robert lives in Mid-City with his wife Eve and their three children, and is fond of receiving comments and emails. Please humor him.

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