Dallas and I recently met up with Todd for an early lunch at Lillie’s Q, a barbecue place on North Avenue that we’ve been meaning to try. Dallas and I arrived early, so we ordered boiled peanuts for an appetizer. We are both boiled peanut lovers, as they’re a local specialty in both Hawaii, where Dallas grew up, and in the South, where my dad’s family is from.
For drinks, Dallas ordered a Lillie Palmer, which is basically a boozed up Arnold Palmer. Don’t ask me what kind of booze was in it, the menu said “moonshine” and you could pick the potency! I got my first Bell’s Oberon of the season. Tasty. All drinks, including water, are served in Ball jars.
Lillie’s Q makes five of their own sauces, which are bottled and available on every table. You can pick and choose whichever sauces you want. Here are the choices:
- Smoky: A unique blend of ketchup, brown sugar, mustard, vinegar, apple concentrate, liquid smoke, and a few other spices known only to Charlie.
- Hot Smoky: A unique blend of ketchup, brown sugar, mustard, vinegar, apple concentrate, liquid smoke, and a few other spices known only to Charlie.
- Carolina: A unique blend of ketchup, brown sugar, mustard, vinegar, apple concentrate, Worcestershire, and a few other spices known only to Charlie.
- Carolina Gold: A unique blend of mustard, brown sugar, ketchup, vinegar, apple concentrate, Worcestershire, and a few other spices known only to Charlie.
- Ivory: A unique blend of mayonnaise, apple cider, vinegar, lime juice, and a few other spices known only to Charlie.
You can also buy the sauces for barbecuing at home. We all definitely liked the Carolina sauces the best. Dallas loved the mustard-based Carolina Gold. My favorite was the Carolina.
For lunch I had the pulled chicken sandwich on brioche, southern style (with coleslaw on top) and the baked beans. Always the baked beans. The chicken was flavorful and so tender. And I loved the beans. Not too smoky, not too sweet.
Dallas got the pulled pork with sweet potato fries as a side.
Dallas and Todd split the tri-tip. Todd didn’t love it and though it should have had a better sear or char on the outside, but Dallas thought it was great.
Todd got the baby back ribs with the stone ground grits with bacon as a side. He gave a rib to Dallas and I to try and I really liked them, but I’m not a huge rib connoisseur. Well, a few days after this lunch I saw that Lillie’s Q was recognized by Food and Wine as one of the top six new barbecue restaurants in United States. And the magazine specifically recommended the baby back ribs. I guess it’s not just me who thinks the ribs were good!
So yeh, we liked Lillie’s Q. When we arrived at 11:30 the place was empty but by the time we left it was full. Not sure how busy they are at night. I think my dad would like this place. Maybe I will take him next time he is in town!