Sunday, August 21, 2011

Johnny's Barbecue, Gainesville, GA

Johnny's Barbecue, Gainesville, GA
. For quite some time I had been waiting to try out Johnny's. On at least two occasions they had been closed the day that I happened to be in Gainesville, so with Debbie and I having a Saturday outing just north of Gainesville, when lunch time got near, I plugged Johnny's into my GPS. Johnny's has a little bit of the "look" of a good bbq joint. It's nothing really fancy from the outside, has a gravel parking lot to the side, and the barbecue pit is located outback in a separate screened building. On the inside, Johnny's also has the appearance of a good little Q joint. There is sort of a mixture of formica and vinyl along with a section that is warm wood panelling. You order up at the counter and pick up your food there, so there's no real service as far as waitresses.

Debbie and I scoped out the menu which by my standards was clearly sufficient, but if you are looking for anything other than some form of barbecue pork, beef, or chicken, pass up on Johnny's. The prices at Johnny's are one of the two best things about the joint. We ordered up our typical sandwiches, stew, and fries and the whole bill was slightly over $12!!! Now that's my kind of meal tab!!! We hardly had time to turn around when our food was ready, so we found us a booth and began our eating and critiquing.

First, let me go ahead and report on the "second" best thing we found about Johnny's.....crushed ice! We both always find crushed ice, and I know that is such a little thing, a bonus! The sandwiches were well portioned, so you don't leave hungry. The quantity of (disappointingly previously frozen) french fries was borderline "heaping". I wanted to try the sauce before dressing my bbq, and it was a very good, sweet thick sauce that had just enough kick to it to make it interesting. There is only one sauce available, which must work for Johnny's but I'd have preferred to try another sauce or so with the bbq. The small cup of stew that I ordered with my sandwich was just decent. The color was a little on the dark side. The consistency was good, and the taste was alright. The stew gets little more than a 3 on the 5 point scale.

Pretty much the same ranking goes to Johnny's bbq. To their credit, again, portion size was good, and if you eat big, they also have a jumbo sandwich for just a little more. The barbecue was clean and relatively free of fat or bark. While my general preference is typically form my meet to be pulled and not finely chopped which is how Johnny's meat is prepared. On the negative side, it was actually a little on the dry side.

Overall, Johnny's just earned a 3 for the overall experience. There are at least 3 other bbq joints in Gainesville, so the chicken capital of world has good choices when it comes to bbq. At least on this visit, Johnny's doesn't get top billing.

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