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Thread: California > San Francisco: Black Bark BBQ

  1. #1
    Moderator Chris Allingham's Avatar
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    California > San Francisco: Black Bark BBQ

    Black Bark BBQ
    1325 Fillmore St.
    San Francisco, CA 94115
    415-848-9005
    http://blackbarkbbq.com/

    On 11/20/2017, I visited Black Bark BBQ in The City with my college roommate Eric. We ordered a sample of brisket, pulled pork, and spareribs with sides of collard greens and cornbread, along with beer and sweet tea.

    True to its name, there was lots of delicious bark on both the brisket and the pulled pork. The spareribs were very meaty and perfectly cooked. Four varieties of sauces are served at the table: mild, mustard-based, vinegar-based, and hot pepper. I liked the mild sauce the best. The sides were tasty; the sweet tea was a little too sweet for my taste.

    The only complaint we had was that the food was not served warm enough. The cool weather in San Francisco doesn't help (and the front door was propped wide open), nor does the aluminum quarter sheet pans on which the meat is served--a popular serving tray used in many BBQ joints today--that just sucks the heat right out of the meat.

    Prices are very high at Black Bark BBQ, in fact they charge for meat by the half pound to make the prices appear more reasonable. When adjusted to normal dollar-per-pound prices, brisket sells for $29/lb, pulled pork $20/lb, a half chicken for $10, smoked turkey leg for $8.50, and spareribs-by-the-bone are 3 bones for $9, 6 for $16, and 12 for $29. Individual sides are generally $4.50 each and cornbread is $2.

    In addition to meat sold by the half pound, there are a variety of sandwiches, plates, and salads available. Black Bark also has platters that serve as many as 12 people.














  2. #2
    TVWBB Olympian Cliff Bartlett's Avatar
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    Talk about nostalgia! Just a couple of blocks from the old Fillmore Auditorium. The City holds a lot of nice memories for me. Might have to step back into "The Day" and check this place out. Thanks Chris. Looks interesting for sure.
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    TVWBB Gold Member Dustin Dorsey's Avatar
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    They need to turn down that alto shaam.
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    TVWBB 1-Star Olympian Bob Correll's Avatar
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    Nice review Chris.
    At those prices they would not be in business long around here.

    Meat placed on butcher paper, on a tray, has turned me off most local que joints.
    Styrofoam plates can't add that must to their overhead.
    I think they think it looks cool served like that, maybe so, but who likes cool meat?

  5. #5
    Moderator Chris Allingham's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dustin Dorsey View Post
    They need to turn down that alto shaam.
    I thought so, too, but noticed the door was wide open. Odd, I thought.

  6. #6
    Moderator Chris Allingham's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bob Correll View Post
    Nice review Chris.
    At those prices they would not be in business long around here.

    Meat placed on butcher paper, on a tray, has turned me off most local que joints.
    Styrofoam plates can't add that must to their overhead.
    I think they think it looks cool served like that, maybe so, but who likes cool meat?
    Minimum wage is currently $13/hr and on its way to $15/hr. That explains part of the high cost. Also, styrofoam food packaging is banned in San Francisco. No political comments, please.

    A warm plate would do the job.

  7. #7
    TVWBB Gold Member Dustin Dorsey's Avatar
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    I would have never thought of the aluminum trays thing. Maybe if they kept the trays warm? That is the super trendy way to serve BBQ these days. I'm trying to think back to places I've been. Franklin does that but uses plastic trays. Some of the real old school ones just serve it on butcher paper. I would expect prime beef at that price. They'd go broke here at those prices too, but most joints here are serving select. I kind of wondered if the alto shaam was somehow part of their process, such as doing a super low and slow after getting smoke on it from the Old Hickory smoker. Who knows. Thanks for the review, Chris!
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  8. #8
    Moderator Chris Allingham's Avatar
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    Franklin uses an Alto Shaam to hold briskets prior to service at 11 am. It's a common tool in restaurants of all types, to be sure.



    Black Bark BBQ doesn't specify USDA Prime brisket but describes it as "highest quality, naturally raised (hormone free) meats". Not sure where they're sourcing their meat from.

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