Well I’m at the HighEdWeb conference in Springfield, MO and was looking for a place to eat some BBQ. Was going to hit Granddaddy’s which is downtown but caught wind it was closed on Monday’s (UPDATE – Tried to go to it that Tuesday as well and it was also closed, not sure what was up with that because they actually advertised at the conference) so hit up another place named Trolley’s which was a cool place, food was a bit higher then it was but can’t beat buck a mug deals.
So today for lunch decided to drive around and found a place named Bandana’s.
Atmosphere is your typical chain kind of place, similar to the Wing’s Etc we have up by us. Country music playing which is a negative in my book but I’ve come to expect. Not to many other electronic music peeps into BBQ. Waiter was great, drink never was empty and he was on top of things.
But onto the things that matter, the food. Had the Brunswick stew which was pretty water for my taste. The vegetables needed to be chopped maybe one size smaller and the meat was just barely there and could have almost been missed. Though the one nice thing out of it was you got a nice BBQ taste from the sauce they use in it. I really like the Brunswick stew I use to get at Smokey Bones and the variant off of that I make I feel is much better. Where I would give SB’s stew a 7.5 out of 10, I would probably give Bandana’s a 4. I wouldn’t order it again.
For the main meal I ordered the pick 3 with the Pork, Beef and Sausage. Sides I got Fried Corn and potato salad. On the menu it said that the Fried Corn was “famous.” I always forget you can be famous for bad food. :) I made it half way down one row of the corn before I had to stop. It’s candy like in taste cause the outside is a bit caramelized but it’s not a very pleasurable taste. It also sticks to your teeth which added a bit of annoyment. The potato salad was good, pretty standard but enjoyable.
As for the main courses, the sausage was standard, nothing out of the ordinary. As for the beef and the pork I was pretty disappointed. It was chopped instead of pulled (which wasn’t really clear because on one spot on the menu it mentions pork as pulled but others as hand carved, only after going to the website did I see the later) and it seemed to only be cooked to get it to be chopped which I prefer mine cooked a little longer. The smoke ring looked funny like it was almost like a dye ran into it. Not quite sure what that was about. The overall flavor was bland, it tasted more like a roast done in the overn then something smoked.
The sauces were overall nothing special. 3 were basically the same with just hot sauce thrown in to make it different. The flavors didn’t really come together in any of the sauces.
Overall I’d give the place a 4 out of 10 and would most likely not go back unless I was with someone who picked it (and I would complain the whole time.) Overall the food was average or below but the service helped to give them a little extra. Though that can change pretty easily from visit to visit.