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Thread: Oklahoma > Oklahoma City: Leo's BBQ

  1. #1
    TVWBB Pro Lynn Dollar's Avatar
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    Oklahoma > Oklahoma City: Leo's BBQ

    Leo's BBQ
    3631 N Kelly
    Oklahoma City, OK

    I was looking for a word to describe this joint and iconic kept poppin into my mind, but that's a little much for a barbecue joint , then I thought it was an Oklahoma City institution , and maybe that's over board too. But its been a well known barbecue joint here since opened in an old gas station in 1974. And not much has changed over the years. This one is definitely a throw back.

    Its gotten a visit from Guy Fieri and Diners, Drive Ins, and Dives ........... and I think maybe just let this serve as a review.




    Leo's is all about the ribs .......... and the sauce. This is real barbecue, wood smoked in an old brick pit that's been there from Day One in 1974. The ribs are great, enough said. Ya don't last 45 years serving mediocre ribs, at least not here. The sauce is hard to describe, its not a KC sauce, its got some sweet but it doesn't have the tang of KC style. Its Leo's sauce. And he has a version with some heat.

    Mrs Dollar and I went at noon on Saturday and it was half full. We got the Light Dinner. She got the brisket and I got the ribs and then we split it up. The brisket is chopped, I think I was getting both point and flat. The ribs were what I expected at Leo's, St Louis cut, weren't fall of the bone, perfect tenderness.

    The sides were a mac salad, not mac and cheese, that may have little bits of sweet pickel added, Mrs Dollar thought so, anyway. And some great beans, IDK what they put in em, they were just good.

    And the Leo's World Famous Strawberry Banana Cake that came with the dinner, was all that they say it is.

    Wife struck up a convo with the young couple at the next table, and they were from Tulsa. Said every time they're in OKC, they go to Leo's. I can't blame them. Leo's was really good, however, it would barely be in my top five in this area. While the ribs are great, that's about it.

    I don't think this building has changed in 45 years, they may have added on that little room to the left ......



    This is the menu and first thing ya see when ya walk in, I doubt if its changed much either. But Leo's is a " seat yourself " with a waitress taking your order, kind of joint.



    Ya know you're in a barbecue joint, when the first thing the waitress brings is two wet towels to clean up with . The only thing missing from the old time joints I knew from 40 years ago, was the outside wash basin.



    Barbecue is universal , young and old











    Last edited by Lynn Dollar; 06-20-2019 at 02:10 PM.
    2002 18" WSM , 1999 22 Kettle , 1983 Smokey Joe , 2019 26" Kettle , 2016 Spirit 3 Gasser , Old Country Brazos offset smoker

  2. #2
    TVWBB Platinum Member Dustin Dorsey's Avatar
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    That looks like a great joint. I'd eat those ribs all day!
    22.5 WSM, 22.5 OTS, Smokey Joe, Genesis 1000, Slow N Sear 2.0, Smokenator 1000, Old Country Pecos, Thermapen, Smoke, Maverick ET-732, Igrill 2

  3. #3
    TVWBB Member
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    I ate at Leo's a lot in the early to mid 1990's. The food was always good but never in the top 10 in my opinion. I never has brisket. Usually the ribs but the hot links and bologna were always a close second.
    SSP, Sprit 310SS, 14.5 WSM, Q100, Smokey Joe

  4. #4
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    Great write-up and photos! Just wondering what your Top5 or 10 would look like. I live in SW Oklahoma, about 2 hours away from OKC. Always looking for some good BBQ. I have to admit I've been getting spoiled by Central TX style BBQ, but oh them ribs.


    22.5" WSM, Weber 22.5" charcoal grill, Weber E310
    Last edited by Bill T; 07-25-2019 at 02:19 PM.

  5. #5
    TVWBB Pro Lynn Dollar's Avatar
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    Thanks for reading my posts.

    Hmmm Top 5 -- if ya want central Texas brisket ........ then Texlahoma or Maples top the list. Cornish Smokehouse is very very good. Back Door would be number four. I don't know of a five ..............yet. But the local comp barbecue team that wins most everything they enter, Clarks Crew, is opening a joint. It should be very good, I think maybe later this year they'll be open.

    If you're driving to OKC from SW Oklahoma, then Maples or Cornish would be most convenient. Maples is in the Plaza District, I've heard some complaints about parking there, but we've not had a problem on the side streets. Texlahoma is quite a ways north, on Waterloo Rd north of Edmond, but its really good.

    When ya throw pork into the mix, then Butcher in Wellston is competing with Texlahoma, Cornish, and Maples. Butcher's pulled pork is fantastic as are their ribs. Back Door is right there, but just a notch under the others.

    Mrs Dollar really likes Butcher. I do too. But they're only open Friday, Sat, and Sunday and another 30 minutes on the road for you. And ya need to get there when they open at 11 am. Although, I've heard a theory on that, you can get there at 10:30 , be first in line or near the front and wait 30 minutes. Or you can get there right at 11 and wait 30 minutes in line. And they sell out , some days as early as 2 or 3 pm, if the weather is really nice.
    2002 18" WSM , 1999 22 Kettle , 1983 Smokey Joe , 2019 26" Kettle , 2016 Spirit 3 Gasser , Old Country Brazos offset smoker

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