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Thread: California > Tahoe City: Moe's Original Bar B Que

  1. #1
    Moderator Chris Allingham's Avatar
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    California > Tahoe City: Moe's Original Bar B Que

    Moe's Original Bar B Que
    120 Grove St
    Tahoe City, CA 96145
    http://www.moesbbqtahoe.com/ and http://www.moesoriginalbbq.com/

    Recently my wife and I were on vacation in Tahoe City, CA and learned about a new BBQ restaurant called Moe's Original Bar B Que that had come to town since our visit last August. A quick check online showed that it's part of a restaurant chain with many locations around the USA, but the Tahoe City location is the only one in the entire state of California. Well, that meant we had no choice but to give it a try.

    The thing I assumed going in was that it was going to be EXPENSIVE, and it was. After all, you're in a resort area where EVERYTHING is expensive. So I was not surprised by the high prices, but that coupled with the relatively small portion sizes and it was kind of a double-whammy in terms of value. I can't speak to the size of the plate meals because we had sandwiches at lunch time, but the size of the sammies and sides were on the small side. While I didn't leave hungry, I wasn't completely satisfied, either. If you're a big eater, you may not be satisfied by one sandwich plus 2 sides, which is the standard configuration. You might need a second sandwich or more sides or the "add more meat to any meal" option for $4.

    Moe's serves Alabama style barbecue, so there's chopped pork sammies and spareribs on the menu, plus chicken, chicken wings, smoked turkey, a couple of seafood options, and a couple of vegetarian options. Sides include beans, slaw, potato salad, homemade chips, cornbread, banana pudding, and a bunch of "daily special" sides not on the printed menu. There's a full bar with lots of beers on tap, plus soft drinks and sweet and unsweet tea.

    There's apparently quite a nighttime music scene at Moe's, they include an entire section about it on their website, so I imagine the place rocks hard after 7pm on many evenings. But at lunchtime, it was good country music playing throughout the restaurant that we enjoyed. And as you can see in the photos below, Moe's at Tahoe City must have THE BEST VIEW of any barbecue joint in America...truly world class.

    Yelp reviews indicate some poor service at times, and we experienced some of that during our visit. The line moved slowly, in part because of the complexity of the menu and ordering process, and in part because people aren't well prepared to place their order and make their choices once at the register--both common problems at some BBQ restaurants, in my experience. Once we got our food, there were some issues with order accuracy (pickles included on one sandwich when ordered without) and a missing piece of cornbread on one order. When asked for the missing cornbread, the guy at the pickup window acted like I was bent out of shape and told me to calm down, when in fact I was not the least bit upset. Perhaps he was just having a bad day.

    As for the taste of the food, we had a pulled pork sandwich and a turkey sandwich, and the turkey was the winner between the two, which is kind of a bummer for an Alabama style restaurant specializing in pork! But the turkey was moist and had a nice smoky flavor, whereas the pulled pork, while moist, was bland and had no discernible smoke flavor...most flavor came from the red sauce that I added from the squirt bottle at the table.

    Oh, speaking of sauce, Moe's has white sauce, too, the mayonnaise-based sauce made popular by Big Bob Gibson BBQ and similar joints in Alabama and served here on chicken and turkey and even on one of the pork sandwiches.

    For sides, we chose homemade chips, mac & cheese, cornbread, and banana pudding. The chips were OK, seasoned simply with salt and pepper, but a little too dark for my liking. The mac & cheese had good flavor, but was a bit dry. The cornbread was grilled on one side, a nice touch, with a light jalapeno flavor. And the banana pudding...sad. Between the two of us, we could not find any banana flavor. Two little Nilla Wafers top and bottom with a bunch of filling in between that seemed like a cross between pudding and whipped cream, very light in texture, and flavored with what I thought was cinnamon but that my wife felt was more like pumpkin pie spices. Edible, but not banana. Any of the stupid simple banana pudding recipes I have on TVWB would be an improvement over Moe's version.

    So, the bottom line: Two sandwiches, four sides, two soft drinks, about $30 plus tip. That's only about $4 more than a typical barbecue lunch for two in San Jose where I live, but the portion sizes were a lot smaller.

    Would I go again? Not sure. If I did, I would pay $4 more to add more meat to my sandwich, I wouldn't expecting too much from the sides, and I'd skip the pudding.

    Here are some photos of the restaurant, the food, and the beautiful location for your enjoyment.




    Nice outdoor deck and music stage, probably the best view from any BBQ joint in America.




    Open kitchen lets you see your food while waiting in line to order.










    Top: Turkey sandwich, mac & cheese, banana pudding. Bottom: Pork sandwich, homemade chips, cornbread.


    Pork sandwich looks a little sad and smashed coming out of the wrapper.

    Continued...

  2. #2
    Moderator Chris Allingham's Avatar
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    Inside view of pork sandwich.


    Inside view of turkey sandwich.


    Mac & cheese was tasty but dry.


    Homemade chips were fried a little too dark for my liking. The grilled cornbread was nice.


    No bananas were harmed in the making of this pudding. At least we couldn't taste or see them in our serving.


    Red sauce served at the table. Tomato and vinegar are the dominant flavors, a little sweet, with some black pepper thrown in for good measure. I liked it a lot.


    $30 for a slab of spareribs? Only in a vacation destination like Tahoe City.

  3. #3
    TVWBB Olympian ChuckO's Avatar
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    If you happen to be in Tahoe (specifically Olympic Village / Valley) You gotta go to Graham's. It's pricey, but it's Tahoe

    https://www.yelp.com/biz/grahams-at-...sq=Restaurants

    The Quail in Cabernet and Roast Duck in Cognac are my favorites
    85 78

  4. #4
    TVWBB Wizard Bob Bass's Avatar
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    This pork sandwich vs the Silicon Valley pork sandwich.... Decisions... Decisions...

    If one's mind were to wander... would be easy to picture an Old Southern BBQ Smokehouse at that location.... Dave, Oh Dave....
    KCBS, SCA, Operation BBQ Relief

  5. #5
    Moderator Chris Allingham's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bob Bass View Post
    This pork sandwich vs the Silicon Valley pork sandwich.... Decisions... Decisions...
    Yeah, you think?


  6. #6
    TVWBB Wizard James N's Avatar
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    The bun top on the Moe's sandwich looks like a seat for a bicycle... lol

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