Reviews

Buck’s Naked BBQ, Freeport Maine

Who says you can’t find great barbecue in Maine?  It’s everywhere, my friends; you just gotta know where to look.  And one place is on Route 1 in Freeport, just south of town.

We only review the very best, and this place is no exception.  I was impressed (more…)

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Places We Didn’t Review

The Not Fake News exists because of the distressing tendency of the media to thrive on negativity and chaos.  We oppose the fearmongering and divisiveness by being a voice for reason whenever we can.  When we write a review, it’s because it was so very good we felt absolutely compelled to speak up; people need to know the good things in life.

The trouble is, people deserve a warning (more…)

The Bacon Tree, Winterport, Maine

Full disclosure:  I saw no evidence of barbecue here.  But it was so good it’s getting a review anyway; after all, what are rules for if you can’t break them?

In a tiny room off to one side of the Winterport Winery sits one of the best breakfasts in Maine (not to mention lunch and dinner).  We passed up Dysart’s for this, and we were not disappointed. (more…)

Texas Jack’s Barbecue, Arlington VA

I know what you’re thinking:  Barbecue — in Arlington?!  Well, it just goes to show:  You shouldn’t judge based on your preconceptions.  That’s right:  Texas Jack’s does good ‘Cue.

If you don’t know where Arlington is, “Pentagon” and “Blast Radius” may remind you.  In the shadow of our nation’s capitol, this mega-suburb was originally part of the District until Virginia took it back after decades of of mismanagement and neglect.  It’s a hodgepodge of skyscrapers, hotels, million-dollar postage-stamp houses, Reagan National Airport, and more Starbucks per square mile (more…)

The Black Hog, Urbana MD

The Washington D.C. Beltway is the deadliest stretch of highway in North America.  It goes from two lanes up to twelve, often without warning, and connects I-95 with half a dozen commuter highways, none busier than I-270.  Here, lawyers and lobbyists come together and kill each other daily while playing bumper-tag in Audis, Beemers, Priuses, and Teslas.  Some would say that’s the best public service they’ll ever perform in their abbreviated lives, but who am I to judge?  All I’ll say is this:  Never ever but never take these roads during rush hour.

Fortunately, the Black Hog is open at 11am daily, and Urbana (just off I-270) is only one of three locations — the best, though the two in Frederick come close.  Here can be found some of the best ribs, sauces, and barbecue in the world.  They’ll serve your ribs wet or dry (more…)

Boxcar Bar + Arcade, Raleigh NC

And here you thought arcades were a thing of the past.

The Boxcar is precisely what the arcades of your youth were not.  Those machines were filthy, nasty, and poorly maintained; these are pristine and beautiful.  The crowd back then was smelly pimpled kids sucking Jolt Cola; now, they’re well-groomed urban professionals mixed with college students, and the beverage of choice is craft beer on tap.  And let me tell you, the beer is damned good — too good, in fact; it’ll affect your game if you’re not careful.

Speaking of games, let me tell you about the games.  Not only do they (more…)

Swig & Swine, Charleston SC

“Horrifyng Vegetarians Since 2013”, the Swig & Swine serves what I believe to be the best ‘Que in the Lowcountry, including the third-best ribs I have ever had the pleasure to consume.

With any other style of cuisine I’d have to warn you not to be fooled by the decor, which features corrugated steel and a lot of bare wood.  But that’s (more…)

Skippers Fish Camp, Darien GA

When there’s no parking left because of all the local cars, when the smell of the seafood drives you nuts while you’re in line to get seated, and where there’s an actual shrimp boat tied up to the dock outside — that’s where you go to get good food.

Darien is a little town in Georgia with a big history and a wildlife sanctuary, but that’s not what we’re talking about here.  Instead, we’re talking about fresh-caught Georgia shrimp (more…)

Jet City Espresso, Tampa FL

It’s an unlikely place for wonderful coffee — a tiny repurposed Florida house, beige and unassuming.  And yet… wow.

Pre-Starbucks, there wasn’t a coffee shop on every corner.  You could go a ways before you found the nearest Krispy Kreme or Dunkin Donuts, and even then the coffee was pretty basic — bland and ordinary, and usually weak as dishwater.  But then came the coffeehouse movement of the early 90s, which introduced the joys of espresso and latte to the American public.

Jet City opened up in Tampa back then and has been going strong (more…)