Away from the Avenues Mall, away from stores of any kind, sits Tombo's Backporch BBQ on Philips Highway. It's a small eatery where the decor can only be called 'early redneck.' Wind chimes made up of beer cans? Nuff said. At lunch, the clientele is mostly locals from workplaces in the neighborhood. But what did these people know about good eats and real BBQ? MelLo went on assignment to find out. Now, Mel is a Texan and knows her BBQ. Lo is a northerner who has only recently learned the difference between BBQ and grilling. Between the two of them, they will try to find the best of Tombo's.
Tombo's menu revolves around BBQ items. The chalkboard menu has two serving sizes: Large and Jumbo. The sides are extra, but all menu items were reasonably priced. We ordered the Jumbo ribs (five big ones) with a side of fries, and the Large hamburger (half pound patty) with a side of homemade beans. The Jumbo hamburger, a one pounder, was just too jumbo for us.
Mel said, "these ribs have a nice smoky flavor, but could be a little leaner." You could smell and taste the campfire smokiness of them. There was also a homemade BBQ sauce that was very good, giving a nice balance between sweet and spicy.
The burger patty was homemade and was well seasoned. The lettuce was not shredded but fresh and crisp. The bun was toasted with garlic butter and delicious, but alas, not enough to handle the burger and toppings, making it a bit messy. Does anyone make a hamburger bun to hold this much meat? The fries were seasoned, but not too much. As Mel said, "good fries to go with an honest burger." Was it just me, or was Mel's Texan accent increasing with each bite?
The swoon food for us was the baked beans. There were pieces of smoked pulled pork in the beans, adding a smoky flavor. There was some of the BBQ sauce in it, as well. Lo has eaten canned baked beans, has made baked beans from scratch, but nothing, NOTHING, matched these beans!
For dessert, we tried the warm bread pudding topped with custard sauce. It was good old comfort dessert, matching the good honest ribs and burger, at a good honest price. Mel said it best, "this restaurant is a working man's dream."