Red’s True Barbecue, Nottingham
11 Queen Street, Nottingham
Where do you go to find good barbecue in the East Midlands? I had been trawling through reviews and menu’s of so many places before winding up at a place many regard as one of the best. Red’s True Barbecue have locations scattered across England with a reputation for smoking up some of the best meats around. We headed out to their Nottingham branch before another ice hockey game at Nottingham Panthers.
Red’s is situated on Queen Street in the centre of Nottingham in a long row of bars and restaurants – all of which were very popular on a saturday evening. We took an early booking at Red’s due to the game starting at 7pm and at 4.30pm the place was just nicely busy. The staff were very friendly and gave us a mini tour of the open kitchen along the front where the meats are smoked and barbecue heaven is passed from kitchen to diner.
Our seats were on the upper level of the restaurant giving a great vantage point across the floor. We could peer down and see people enjoying huge trays of ribs, brisket and pulled pork along with giant onion rings, a real sight to behold. The menu was incredibly hard to choose from, so many good dishes and combinations all at a fair price. In the end we went for a Dirty Buffalo Chicken S’wich (£11.50) and a Pulled Pork S’wich at £7.50.
We also ordered non-alcoholic cocktail’s known as Pacific Cooler, a blend of mango, passionfruit and lime at a cool £3.50 each. The food here gets served very quickly and that’s probably a good thing – the smoke in here really gets you to begin with but you do get used to it, it’s a good idea not to wear your best clothes. The drinks arrived mere seconds after the food so no problems at all there.
The portions are definitely on the generous side. My tower of pulled pork complete with buttermilk slaw, apple sauce, brioche bun and fries was a hearty feast. Sauces and salt and pepper are provided on the side with the Kansas bbq sauce my personal favourite. The pork was smoked beautifully and melted in the mouth just as good pulled pork should. The slaw was nice, coleslaw isn’t my favourite in general but this was nice, fresh and not overbearing. The fries and apple sauce all added great accompaniments to the bun which was proving tricky (and messy) to dismantle.
The chicken burger was also in the same league of messiness but also deliciousness. They even stuck a knife in it just to keep it standing! Complete with bacon, buffalo sauce and slaw this was delicious, who doesn’t love crispy chicken? Heaven. Thankfully Red’s provide wipes as by now we were practically wearing our dinner on our hands.
I had put aside quite a bit of time for the restaurant as you never know how long you will be in a place on a busy saturday evening. We were in and out in under 45 minutes which is quite something! Full marks for the attentive service with a friendly attitude and the final bill coming in at £26 felt like money well spent. We can’t wait to return to Red’s True Barbecue to sample more of their smoky delights.
Opening times: Daily 1200-2300 (2200 Sunday)
Nearest Train Station: Nottingham