Tuscaloosa’s Top Ribs

The Southeast has always been known for its distinct style of BBQ. When you think of the Southeast, you think of pork, specifically pulled pork. Being an out-of-stater, Texas to be exact, I had only known beef BBQ.

By Harrison Holditch
Contributing Writer

The Southeast has always been known for its distinct style of BBQ. When you think of the Southeast you think of pork, specifically pulled pork. Being an out-of-stater, Texas to be exact, I had only known beef BBQ.

Moving to Tuscaloosa, I had a difficult time getting over the no beef BBQ rule. This also allowed me to try many places and all different styles of BBQ. I was in search of something that I could be comfortable eating regularly since I was living in Alabama. Ribs just happen to be my favorite item on most menus, so I made a goal to track down the best ribs in Tuscaloosa.

I have produced a list of some of my personal favorite ribs in this BBQ-rich city.

1. JIM ‘N NICK’S 305 21st Ave, Tuscaloosa, AL

Jim ‘n Nick’s have some of the best southern traditional style BBQ in Tuscaloosa. One thing about Jim ‘n Nick’s is they have things not found in a common southeast joint such as, Brisket and chopped beef sandwiches, which are associated with BBQ out west. Also found here are local Alabama beers, which have been on a steady rise in recent years. The real treat that’s waiting, are the giant classic spare ribs. The best part about the ribs is not that you order by the rack, but order by the pound, that’s when you know you’re at a good spot.

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2.ARCHIBALD & WOODROWS BBQ 4215 Greensboro Ave, Tuscaloosa, AL
Archibald is a typical hole-in-the-wall BBQ restaurant. It serves the classics any southern BBQ pit would have. The atmosphere is much different than the franchised Jim ‘n Nick’s. You won’t see whole families after church waiting to be seated. It is a small place, but Archibald’s delivers in big ways. The ribs are big and the sauce is perfect. The wait might be long but it’s worth it.

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3.DREAMLAND 5535 15th Ave E, Tuscaloosa, AL 35405
Dreamland has become a Tuscaloosa staple. It’s the place you go when all else fails, when mom and dad are coming to town. Dreamland opened around the time the great Paul ‘Bear’ Bryant start coaching for the Tide. Just like the Love of Coach Bryant hasn’t changed, neither has the wood burning pits and original recipes. The ribs are a classic southern style with just the right amount of ‘Big Daddy’s’ sauce.

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4.FULL MOON BBQ 1434 McFarland Blvd E, Tuscaloosa, AL 35404
Full Moon is another traditional southern style of BBQ. It has many locations spread through out Alabama. In Tuscaloosa however the original one was destroyed in the tornado of April 27, 2011. This would not stop Full Moon to recover, build a new building, and continue on. Even with the new location on McFarland, it still has the old great taste. The pork ribs are more of a dry rub style, allowing the customer to add the preferred amount of sauce. This brings a unique taste unlike the more traditional spots in Tuscaloosa.

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5.MOE’S ORIGINAL BBQ 2101 University Blvd, Tuscaloosa, AL 35401
Moe’s is, but isn’t your typical Alabama BBQ. Moe’s however is located all over the country, residing mostly in Alabama and Colorado. This BBQ joint brings a unique atmosphere and food experience. The clear Colorado theme in an Alabama BBQ bar has an out of the place, yet still home feeling. Instead of Crimson Tide football posters and painted murals of Coach Nick Saban, Moe’s hangs ski’s, and signs of ski runs from Vail, Colo. The ribs at Moe’s are some of the best for your buck. A large set of ribs is pretty manageable for a college student, to eat there more than just the special BBQ occasion. There is something else about having a Bushwhacker that helps the ribs fall off the bone more than they already do.

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