Gary in VA, Dan from 3 Eyz BBQ, Mrs Bill the Grill Guy and I decided to meet in Midlothian VA at Tuffy Stones (Cool Smoke) place called
I had picked up a smoker for Dan and we thought that would be a great place to exchange it.
Dan calls me on my cell about 10 minutes from arriving there and says that he just saw Chris from Big Ugly's BBQ (from MD) driving by and wondered if he was going to
's as well.
As we pulled up to the parking lot I could see Dan talking to Chris and to my amazement, Mike from Chix, Swine and Bovine (from MD), Tom and Christy Q from VA BBQ Pirates (Northern VA), Chris and Val from Buttabing BBQ team (from PA), and Sal from Smokin Gnome BBQ team (from PA) were all standing in the parking lot chatting. They didn't know that we would be there and we didn’t know they were going to be there.
The restaurant is in a shopping center on the end with the big
snout sign standing out. The place was well lit and very colorful. You could smell the Q as you walked up to the door. The seating are was almost arena style over looking a wide screen TV mounted over a large gas fire place.
Two Southern Pride smokers were up front on the serving line and the decor was lightly decorated with Tuffy's trophies, plaques, ribbons and beautiful black and white prints. The menu was simple printed on 2 banners over the door to the kitchen. A wide range of bottle beers were displayed in glass door fridges. There is no waitress's for this place. You place your order and you’re given a number and they bring your meal to you.
I ordered the 2 meat platter with chicken and brisket and the wife got the pork and ribs and of course a couple of beers. 2 sides came with our meals which were greens and hush puppy's but the choices were a lot more than that. Slaw, baked beans, mac and cheese, tater salad, corn pudding, onion rings were also on the sides menu.
As we were standing in line, Tuffy walked into the restaurant and you could see the surprise on his face to see 7 fellow BBQ'ers and their spouses standing in line.
After we all ordered we went to the lower section of the place closest to the fire place and enjoyed the beverages and LOTS of talk about past contests and how we all had met at this contest or that contest. We all commented on how well decorated the place was.
The food began to arrive and the talking soon subsided with eating. Tuffy came out with plates of pork that he had just taken off the Southern Prides that he called "money meat". It was better than the served pork which I think had been sitting for a while. The chicken was fantastic. Moist, tender and full of flavor. The brisket was great. Very Texas style with a mild sauce. The ribs were spares and it seemed that the wife got the "ends" with all the gristle. The sweet sauce was a great compliment to the ribs and the rub. The other sauce was good but a little on the “smoky” side for me.
Tuffy came out as we were finishing up our meals and chatted for about 45 minutes about how he started out in his culinary career and made the switch to Q then up to the restaurant and how it got its unique look. Everyone listened to every word, I guess hoping to get some secrets on how he wins over and over and over again.
As we finished up, Tuffy gave a few of us a tour of the kitchen area. The place was clean, well organized and the staff very knowledgeable. Knowing Tuffy for many years this did not surprise me.
Over all a great “Road Trip” which was amplified by seeing all of our friends from the circuit. If your ever in that area, stop by and treat your self to some great
and I have the shirt to prove it.
Open 11am to 9pm
2077 Wal-Mart Way, Midlothian, Virginia 23113
Located in the Shops at Stonehenge between Sam's Club and Wal-Mart off Midlothian