Slab BBQ - Fairfax


#21

Well, it’s smokey as hell here in L.A. and sometimes salty as hell too.

Yah, I get how it’s cooked. I haven’t perfected the ribs, don’t have interest in doing brisket and have chicken down to a science. But where I was confused is whether the smoked meat is considered BBQ. @aaqjr’s video answered that… kinda’. But you see at the end of the video it shows the Q on top of an open air grill. Now, that might be just for finishing. I dunno’ but I like it.


#22

I’m sure. I hope people are happy there, I’m the kind of snob that won’t go to Sugarfish though. We have good burger and pasta places around as well, so they better bring their A game.


#23

I hear ya’, but sometimes a person just likes the comfort of a sure thing. Knowing there’s quality control and it will taste the same every time. You’ve been lucky. But I’ve had so many ups and downs with local mom & pops.

FTC Confession - My favorite fast weekday lunch place was Saffron (Indian food chain) in Beverly Hills. Yummy samosas. I was bummed when they closed.


#24

Of course. People should be happy and eat what they want. I have my own weird joys. But I just won’t be going to some new bleh burger chain while Golden State is just up the road. Really hopeful Uovo kitchen does great stuff here.


#25

You’re talking to self-professed Five Guys lover.


#26

They’re fine. I like taking my kid there once in a while, it’s right by work. Crap, there are chains I like. HiHo better be better than 5guys


#27

Hi Ho makes a really good burger and relatively cheap. I would compare it more to Shake Shack.
it’s not really a burger chain either. I believe this is their 2rd location?


#28

nice that sounds good! tho it’ll be fairly close to Belcampo as well. i’ll be trying it. mostly we burger it up at home with Nancy Silverton’s blend at 4.99


#29

Oh, no contest. HiHo may be my favorite cheeseburger in town these days. Trust me, my friend, you are psyched to have this place (and Uovo) opening near you.


#30

I’m excited to have Hiho burger as I can walk there. I’m really looking forward to Slab.


#31

SLAB opened today and I rushed over on my lunch break.

They were sold out of all ribs already, but i ordered 1/2lb of fatty brisket, 1/4 pulled pork and a small Mac and cheese… they sold out of brisket as I was eating.

buildout wise it’s a nice to go counter type set up… no table service. You order how much meat you want they weigh it out and give it to you on a tray. Maybe only 30 people to seat only? It’s a small place… it’s a nice modern buildout similar to the styling of bludsos on La Brea… Slab feels a little more West Hollywood-y.

I didn’t have a chance to try Bakman’s backyard offerings, but came for the brisket. It was pretty good… albeit a little too salty in bites. Very nice char and overall definitely really nice. Need to try it again outside of opening day but I think it might be better than bludsos brisket.

The pulled pork was very good, definitely better than bludsos.

Mac and cheese was fine nothing special.

The bbq sauces were a regular, spicy, and a mustard based ones. Didnt care for the regular or mustard at all… basically slather the spicy on everything which was pretty good… bludsos sauces are much better IMO… Slab is lacking here.

Overall, pleased with this place but as it’s the same price point as bludsos… and bludsos has full bar… might be more keen going there over this place so far especially with basically comparable bbq. I will be back though definitely.

Toto


#32

Thanks for the report! How long did you wait in line?

I made it to Trudy’s twice in the pop-up phase, was blown away the first time and satisfied the second, so I’m looking forward to trying Slab/having semi-regular access to Burt’s BBQ.


#33

Line wasnt bad maybe 10minutes?

The brisket was pretty damn good not going to lie.


#34

Went today. Enjoyed the briskets tenderness and juice but the rub was too salty and there wasn’t enough smoke. Felt like he possibly pulled the brisket early and wrapped it.

Had half of spare ribs also, tender well smoked. Rub was quite basic didn’t get much other than hints of salt and pepper.

I agree with the first reviewer the sauces were pretty mediocre.


#35

agreed, he definitely needs to tone down the salt in the brisket…that was my first impression as well.


#36

One thing I forgot to mention after eating some leftovers is that the spare ribs is a pretty good deal because slab doesn’t remove the tips of the spare rib and sell them separately as rib tips. So you get the whole spare rib as opposed to just the St. Louis cut


#37

Now I’m really excited. That’s the way I like my spareribs and nobody does them that way.


#38

i really want to try their pastrami rib, i think they’re going to debut in about a week


#39

I stopped by and took some meats to go. You pick up a tray and order at the counter and ask for sides after. The meats are weighed right in front of you and laid atop your butcher paper lined tray.

Half rack of spare rib

Really average tasting and the rib tip that was left on cooked unevenly with the rest of the rib because of the thickness. Kind of shows the lack of knowledge in proper BBQ as the rib tip has more connective tissue which needs to break down more than the rib meat. With such an uneven cut, it cooks at different temperatures and gets color at different rates. They should procure a much more evenly cut of spares to avoid this problem, such as the ones served at Maple Block. A downgraded Maple Block and Bludsos is still better than this place as far a spare ribs are concerned. Slab has very little smoke flavor which is sort of an ingredient in this style of Texas BBQ. The color of the ribs say it all as they are pale, not the mahogany color I think of with properly smoked ribs. The ribs were meaty, albeit unevenly cooked made for quite a chew in rib tips. Hopefully the pit master cares about the product and fine tunes them. These are about the same quality ribs as Rays, which were not good either.

Half pound “lean” brisket

I specifically asked the guy serving the meat for lean brisket as he said they had it. He basically turned around the fatty end and began slicing from the same piece instead of getting a flat section of the brisket. The brisket was really fatty. This is probably the best meat they offer for me at least, it had a nice meaty flavor and a bit more smoke flavor, although still mild. The meat was cooked nicely and was moist. I wish they would trim the brisket better as there is a lot of fat that did not render out. I can deal with 1/2” to 1” of fat but this was in excess of that. Perhaps I didn’t get the smoke flavor since I scraped the fat off and only ate the meat section. Either way, Ray’s and Maple Block serve up better brisket than here for me. Ray’s is using Creekstone Beef brisket and I can tell Slab is not.

Whole smoked chicken

Pretty crappy, rubbery chicken with hardly any smoke flavor. Not sure how they smoked this but look at the color and you can see why there is no smoke flavor. The skin was also very rubbery and still thick, I doubt they slow smoked this. This is just some sad ass chicken.

The place was semi crowded although I walked in second in line. No phone orders. The bbq sauces were very uneventful, which I needed considering the lack of flavor in the chicken and ribs. I ended up using Sweet Baby Rays because the sauces were not my thing. The pickles and onions were great.

To me, the BBQ seems rushed and lacks the care and attention that quality Central Texas style BBQ needs.

And for those wondering what Tony’s ribs are, they are oven baked baby back ribs which are not smoked. I didn’t order them.

Here is a picture of Maple Block BBQ for reference, notice the much more visibly darker mahogany color on the ribs and chicken. I had this back in August.

In the end, I hope they get better but wow did this suck, especially compared to how spoiled we were when Maple Block was at its best.


#40

Hi @A5KOBE,

Thanks for taking one for the team and the warning and thorough report.