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Slows Bar-B-Q The One Restaurant You Need To Try This Week

Slows Bar-B-Q

2138 Michigan Ave, 48216
  • Neighborhood: Corktown & Southwest
  • Price Level:   
  • Open for: Lunch, Dinner, Weekends
  • Outdoor Patio
  • Cards Accepted

Tags: dinner, drinks, lunch, casual, barbecue, outdoor patio, free wi-fi, Corktown, Craft Beer, bbq, Slows Bar BQ

When we told friends we were writing about Slows BBQ this week, a funny thing happened. At the mention of the name Slows, just about everyone commented on its flawless reputation for mouth-watering barbecue. But there were a surprising number who had never actually dined here. If you’re among the many who suffer from a Slows deficiency, it’s time to remedy that with a trip to this Motor City institution.

Owner Phil Cooley first opened this restaurant in 2005, and the name Slows quickly became synonymous with outstanding barbecue. Detroiters have been known to stand for hours waiting for a coveted table inside the dining room or on the patio. Slows recently added a new room with more tables, a new bar, and 36 craft beer taps. The extra seats are alleviating those epic wait times that regulars have come to expect.

Taking a cue from the finest barbecue methods around the country, you’ll find the menu at Slows stacked with favorites like Texas style beef brisket, St. Louis ribs, Carolina style pulled pork, smoked amish chicken, and Alabama farm raised catfish, served blackened or tempura fried. There isn’t a mediocre dish in the bunch. You could literally close your eyes and point to something on the menu, and it will be one of the best meals of your life.

Slows’ meats are cooked slowly with wood smoke at a low temperature and served dry, which means you get to slather on your own delectable sauce. Slows signature sweet sauce has hints of lemon, onion and ginger. The apple sauce is sweet, tangy, and a little spicy. There’s a rich spicy sauce that has just the right amount of heat, and a whole grain mustard sauce with hints of honey and horseradish. Or try the North Carolina style vinegar sauce, which is tangy and sweet with a little heat.

The awesome part about dry barbecue is that you can combine two or more sauces, creating the perfect flavor for your unique palate. We like to mix the sweet and spicy sauces (sometimes with a little apple swirled in). It works really well with brisket or chicken.

Entrees come with your choice of two sides like baked beans, coleslaw, cornbread or waffle fries. The one side dish you must try is the mac and cheese. Melty, gooey, bubbling baked noodles and cheese converge in a perfect storm of deliciousness.

If that isn’t enough to make your mouth water, Slows also offers a selection of sandwiches that are perfect for lunch but ample enough for a satisfying dinner as well. The Reason is incredibly popular. Made with pork butt that is smoked slow and pulled, it’s bathed in sauce and topped with Slows’ signature coleslaw and dill pickle strips. Another favorite is the Yardbird, which is pulled smoked Amish chicken breast drenched in mustard sauce, tossed with sauteed mushrooms and cheddar, and topped with applewood bacon. We happen to be devout fans of the Longhorn, which is made with beef brisket, onion marmalade, smoked Gouda and a spicy sauce on Texas toast.

It takes a good deal of self control to save room for dessert here, but they are exceptionally delicious. The peach and raspberry cobbler is light enough to follow a hearty plate of barbecue, and just sweet enough to satisfy your sweet tooth.

Slows has arguably the best craft beer selection in town, with 57 microbrews on tap. Among the choices are favorites like New Holland Full Circle, Founder’s Pale Ale, Bell’s Oberon, Arcadia Whitsun, Short’s Bellaire Brown, and Red Streak Cider. They also offer a few mainstream suds like bud light in a bottle, and PBR in a can if you’re too hipster for Oberon.

If you’re among the Detroiters who haven’t visited Slows yet, clear your lunch schedule, find a buddy, and knock this Motor City must-do off your bucket list today.


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